Think of your body as a mighty pyramid. The more stable your foundation is, the more resistant you will be to the natural wear and tear that comes with time. Our foundation is our feet. When you keep your feet strong, it holds the rest of your body tall and keeps it from crumbling down.
When our feet are not strong, it opens up the floodgates to a plethora of misalignments, ailments and injuries. Because our feet are our foundations, foot pain can be the root cause of pain and discomfort to any part of our bodies.
The Silent Killer: Risks of Untreated Heel Pain
Even regular ailments such as a simple bruise or wound are infinitely more impactful when they occur on the heel. If one heel is feeling tender, then our natural reaction is to place extra weight and pressure on the other heel. When we do this we open ourselves up to misalignments in our hips, back, shoulders and neck. This lopsided walk or any other untreated heel pain can create pain and injury in your joints as well as a number of other ailments:
- Pressure Ulcers
- Compartment Syndrome
- Loss/Damaged Function
- Chronic Pain
- Nerve Damage
Identifying Heel Pain
Timing is everything when dealing with foot pain of any kind. The longer your pain and discomfort is allowed to fester, the more likely it is going to cause unnatural gaits and alignments. Watch for these disorders and their key identifying factors for heel pain:
Trapped Nerves – This is caused by over compression of nerves in the heel. Symptoms are pain, numbness, tingling, swelling and discoloration. Symptoms of trapped nerves can be found anywhere at the back, inside or undersurface of the heel.
Plantars Fasciitis – Plantars Fasciitis can be identified as extreme pain underneath the heel that is commonly felt in the first few steps of the day and, in severe cases, again in the afternoon or evening.
Pump Bump – Pump Bumps are sores that are created as a result of friction between the back of a shoe and the back of the heel or achilles. These can be very painful, disrupt your natural gait and if gone untreated may lead to infection.
Local Bruises – Bruising around the heel is often caused by sprains or fractures. Look for blue or dark discoloration and swelling.
Calcaneal Apophysitis – Found in children, Calcaneal Apophysitis is found in the lower-back of the heel. You can identify Calcaneal Apophysitis as soreness to the touch without signs of swelling.
Heel Spur – Patients diagnosed with Heel Spurs can often have no symptoms, but for certain cases, patients show signs of pain and tenderness.
Bursitis – Those suffering from Bursitis will present with pain in the middle surface of their heels that worsens with extended standing, as well as a discomfort in the back of the heel that worsens when bending the foot up or down.
Achilles Tendonitis – Often found in athletes and workout enthusiast, Achilles Tendonitis is a pain in the back of the heel near the achilles. After extensive exercise it is common to feel soreness, stiffness and swelling.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, or extended and excessive heel pain, go see a podiatric specialist for a consultation before it leads to greater or worsening symptoms or conditions.
Effectively Treating Heel Pain
Modern pediatric clinics have found an effective treatment to heel pain that addresses the root cause of heel pain disorders. Radio Frequency Therapy for heel pain is now one of the most common and effective treatments to foot pain disorders. With a small needle, pediatric physicians are able to disrupt the nerves that are sending pain signals to the affected area by introducing radio waves which heat up the nerves.
To completely eliminate your heel pain and prevent further discomfort or serious injuries, contact Infinity Foot & Ankle today!