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Few things to know about your heel pain

November 03 | 2022
Posted by Sharon Tierney

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What is heel pain?

Heel pain

What causes your heel pain?

Heel pain could be from any reason either your inflamed plantar fascia causing plantar fasciitis or any abnormal bony growth causing heel spurs. To get in further details plantar fasciitis is an irritation and inflammation to the tissue that runs at the bottom of the foot extending from the heel to the toes, causing heel pain. It supports the arch of the foot which helps in shock absorption. On other side, heel spur is when a bony outgrowth forms on the heel, which causes heel pain while walking and standing.

What are the causes of heel pain?

Causes are not limited to high and low arches causing irritation to the plantar fascia with running, jogging, playing any sports, prolonged standing and walking. Also, any strain or tear to the fascia. As a result, if this condition is left untreated can lead to bony growth causing heel spurs.

5 Most common risk factors of pain

  • Improper foot wear: The foot wear without proper arch support or worn-out shoes.

    Causes of heel pain

    Improper footwears

  • Weight gain leads to changes in arches and support and affects the weight transmission and shock absorption.
  • Foot mechanics: flat feet or high arches, stiff mid foot and ankle.

    Risk factors for plantar faciitis

    Types of Arches

  • Age: commonly seen between 40 – 60 years old.
  • Occupation: commonly seen in clients with jobs that requires long standing.

What are the symptoms:

With plantar fasciitis it is like a stabbing pain felt at arch of foot and near the inner part of heel whereas pain with spurs is in the center of heel and also feels like a stabbing.

Heel spurs and plantar fascia

Location of pain

Pain is usually worse in the morning taking first few steps with plantar fasciitis. It usually gets better with walking but comes back with long hours of standing and sitting. On other hand pain with spurs gets worse as the day progresses with long hours of standing and walking. Sometimes, there could be swelling present over the heel area.

How will Physiotherapy help you with heel pain?

Your physiotherapist after a detail assessment would be able to identify the cause of the problem and give you advice on how to modify and handle the situation and life style which will help in the road to recovery. Advice would include,

Arch supports

Foot insoles for arch support

  • How to modify activities of daily living.
  • Advice on foot wear.
  • Suggestions on arch supports and custom-made orthotics, night splint.

Apart from this, treatment sessions will include:

  • Hands on techniques to release the tight plantar fascia, calf, mobilization of foot and ankle manually or with a tool.  Stretches for the tight surrounding structures.

    Techniques to release plantar fascia

    Hawk tool to release plantar fascia

  • Strengthening exercise for the supporting structures and muscles that maintain the arches and functional training
  • Kinesiotapping to relieve stress from the affected structures.

Don’t let your pain affect your quality of life and stop you from doing your activities. Book your assessment session now with qualified physiotherapists of PhysioNow. We have various locations to serve the communities in Mississauga, Oakville and Etobicoke. Contact us and get started today!

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