What are heel spurs?
The heel bone is the largest bone in the foot and absorbs the most shock and pressure. A heel spur develops as an abnormal growth of the heel bone. Calcium deposits form when the plantar fascia pulls away from the heel area, causing a bony protrusion, or heel spur, to develop. The plantar fascia is a broad band of fibrous tissue located along the bottom surface of the foot that runs from the heel to the forefoot. Heel spurs can cause extreme pain in the rearfoot, especially while standing or walking.
What causes heel spurs?
Heel spurs develop as an abnormal growth in the heel bone due to calcium deposits that form when the plantar fascia pulls away from the heel. This stretching of the plantar fascia is usually the result of overpronation (flat feet), but people with unusually high arches (pes cavus) can also develop heel spurs. Women have a significantly higher incidence of heel spurs due to the types of footwear often worn on a regular basis.
How do you treat and prevent heel spurs?
The key for the proper treatment of heel spurs is determining the cause of excessive stretching of the plantar fascia. When the cause is overpronation (flat feet), an orthotic with rearfoot posting and longitudinal arch support is effective in reducing overpronation and allow the condition to heal.
Other common treatments include stretching exercises, losing weight, wearing shoes with a cushioned heel that absorbs shock, and elevating the heel with a heel cradle, heel cup, or orthotic. Heel cradles and heel cups provide extra comfort and cushion to the heel, and reduce the amount of shock and shear.
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