2 Common Causes Of Foot Pain In Your Heel

Foot pain isn't easy to live with when every step you take makes you feel miserable. You can have pain anywhere in your foot, but heel pain is quite common. Sometimes heel pain gets better with rest and other times rest makes the pain worse once you get up and start walking again.

That's because there are a few different causes of heel pain. You'll need a doctor to diagnose the reason for your pain and recommend treatment. Here are two common causes of heel pain and their treatments.

1. Tendonitis In Your Heel

Tendonitis, such as Achilles tendonitis, causes pain in the back of your heel. This is a common sports injury caused by overexertion from running and jumping, although it's also possible to get tendonitis if you don't play sports. Tendonitis is inflammation in the tendon that runs down your heel. The inflammation is often caused by tiny tears or injuries in the tendon.

Sometimes, tendonitis can be serious, such as when there is a large tear in the tendon or when the tendon is severed. However, small tears are a common cause of foot pain, and these can often be treated at home. Your doctor may recommend anti-inflammatory medication and ice to reduce swelling that contributes to pain. You might also need to rest with your foot elevated.

Switching the type of shoes you wear could help too, since high heels might make your foot pain worse. Your doctor might even have you wear a walking boot while your heel is mending so your heel is stabilized. Physical therapy might be ordered too so you can learn how to do foot stretches that reduce tightness and stiffness in your foot.

If your tendon injury is more severe, surgery might be needed. The doctor might need to stitch a ruptured tendon together, reposition where the tendon attaches to your heel, or remove a bone spur.

2. Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a common reason for foot pain in the heel area. This differs from tendon pain in the back of your heel. The pain from plantar fasciitis is often on the bottom of your heel, and it often gets worse with rest. Your heel pain may be at its worst when you first get up in the morning.

Your doctor might recommend wearing a splint on your foot at night to counter morning foot pain. The splint keeps your foot stretched so there is less pain when you get up and start moving.

Plantar fasciitis is caused by inflammation in the fascia that connects to the bottom of your heel. Anti-inflammatory medications and ice might help decrease swelling and pain. Your doctor may even need to inject an anti-inflammatory drug in your heel to help reduce pain.

Physical therapy and shockwave therapy are often recommended to treat this type of foot pain. Severe cases might even need surgery. However, surgery is usually saved for a last resort when other treatments don't help reduce pain or speed healing. Look into a foot pain doctor near you for more information.