What is heel pain?
Heel pain is a common condition in which weight bearing on the heel causes extreme discomfort.
What causes heel pain?
Heel pain may be caused by overuse and repetitive stress, or too much impact on a specific area of the foot. This condition, often referred to as “heel pain syndrome,” can be caused by shoes with heels that are too low, a thinned out fat pad in the heel area, or a sudden increase in activity.
Another common cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, a biomechancial problem often caused by overpronation (flat feet). The plantar fascia is a broad band of fibrous tissue that runs along the bottom surface of the foot, from the heel through the midfoot and into the forefoot. Overpronation can cause the plantar fascia to be excessively stretched and inflamed, resulting in pain in the heel and arch areas of the foot. Often the pain will be most intense first thing in the morning or after a prolonged period of rest. The pain may gradually subside as the day progresses.
How do you treat and prevent heel pain?
To properly treat heel pain, you must absorb shock, provide cushioning, and elevate the heel to transfer pressure. This can be accomplished with a heel cup, a visco heel cradle, or an orthotic designed with materials to absorb shock and shear forces.
When the condition is pronation related (usually plantar fasciitis), an orthotic with medial posting and good arch support will control the pronation and prevent the inflammation of the plantar fascia.
Footwear selection is also an important criteria when treating heel pain. Shoes with a firm heel counter, good arch support, and appropriate heel height are the ideal choice.
If the problem persists, consult your doctor. Your Fit Specialist at Stan’s will advise you on appropriate footwear for your condition.
Courtesy of foot.com