A lot of people do not realise how much importance is placed on their feet. After all, you use your feet to get yourself from place to place. Because of this, it is important to understand at least a little bit about various conditions that can afflict your feet so that you can be prepared and know how to handle issues. Out of the numerous things that can go wrong, there is one complaint that remains common all throughout the world and this is pain in the heel of the foot.
What Is a Heel Spur?
To put things simply, a heel spur, which is sometimes referred to as an “Achilles spur,” is a bony growth that can appear underneath the heel bone. This means that there is a hard growth underneath your heel bone, which can cause tremendous pain when you try to walk. More often than not, it is caused by a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which is the inflammation of the plantar fascia. A curious thing to note about this condition is that many people with plantar fasciitis already have heel spurs but they do not feel pain until it suddenly begins to hurt out of nowhere one day. What this means is that if you know that you have plantar fasciitis, you should take the proper steps to reduce pain early on.
What Causes the Pain?
Because the spur is usually already there, there are often certain activities that aggravate the pain. From having an improper gait to standing for the majority of the day, most of these causes will relate to there being too much pressure or strain on the plantar fascia over a long period of time. More causes for spur pain include the following:
- Being overweight
- Wearing poorly fitting shoes
- Wearing badly worn shoes
- Running/jogging on hard surfaces
Usually, a combination of all these triggers will end up causing the spur pain to appear and worsen.
How Can You Combat the Pain?
Because this condition is so common, there are many ways that you can combat the pain until the spur goes away. Of course, you should try to limit heavy activity on the afflicted foot. Active sports, running, and long walks should be cut out of your life until the spur is gone. Putting an ice pack on the heel can help with the inflammation caused by plantar fasciitis, which can help with the pain as well. Typically, you would keep the ice pack on for about five to ten minutes. You could also take some anti-inflammatory medicines to further reduce swelling and other problems.
You can also choose to go with some orthotic treatments, which typically involve getting specialised insoles for your shoes. These will not only help with preventing future spur pain but will also help correct your gait and improper pronation of the foot, which will further reduce the pain that you feel when walking around.