If the bottom of your foot in the heel area is painful, especially after exercising or awakening in the morning, the problem may be due to a heel spur. This is a small, sharp bony calcium deposit that forms near the base of the heel bone. Although a heel spur isn’t relieved immediately, there are ways to reduce pain as you wait for it to totally go away.
Causes of Heel Spurs
Heel spurs are often caused by running, dancing or other repetitive movements. If you jog, run or dance on hard surfaces you’re more likely to have this condition.
Walking at an abnormal pace stresses the heel bone, as well as the nerves and ligaments surrounding the heel. This can also lead to a heel spur forming.
Diagnosis and Treatments
Your foot doctor conducts a thorough physical exam to make a professional diagnosis. By observing x-rays, your doctor can determine the presence of a heel spur, ruling out other possibilities such as bone tumors or stress fractures.
Your podiatrist will probably show you how to do exercises that stretch the calf muscle. Other treatments may entail:
- Taking oral anti-inflammatory drugs
- Wearing heel cushions, arch supports or other othodic aides
- Using a night splint
- Orthopedic taping for supporting your arch
- Cortisone shots
- Physical therapy
- Getting rest is critical in easing pain and reducing inflammation.
- A heel spur can feel like a pin or knife on the bottom of your feet when you first stand up after getting out of bed. This pain turns into a dull achy feeling later. Then, after you’ve sat or stood for a long time, the sharp pain can return.
- Aging increases the odds of getting a heel spur because the protective thick pad of the heel becomes thinner with age.
- People spending a good portion of their day on their feet are more at risk for developing a heel spur.
- Diabetics are also more at risk for developing this problem.
- If you have high arches or flat feet you’re more susceptible to getting a heel spur.
If you’re experiencing symptoms of a heel spur, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with Brevard Podiatry. Our clinic treats foot and ankle problems, offering specific exercises and orthopedic shoes. Please contact us so that we can help you.