Heel pain is a very common problem in the community and a frequent reason for seeking treatment from your GP, physiotherapist or other health professional.
Heel pain is a vague description of a condition that covers quite a large area of the rear foot. While heel pain is rarely a sign of something more serious, it can still impact massively on your life and significantly alter your usual activities.
Our physiotherapists here have a special interest in heel pain and after a thorough assessment, will outline a treatment plan to help get you back on track.
Not all heel pain is plantar fasciitis – many conditions can present as heel pain, simply pressing on a sore point and calling it plantar fasciitis, a heel spur or tendon issue is not ideal. Seeing your GP or physiotherapist is important to get an accurate diagnosis.
Some causes of heel pain
One of the main causes of heel pain is load or a change in load – whether it is too much (overload) or from inactivity.
- over-use: too much sports, running, walking or standing for long periods (e.g. because of your job)
- weight gain: our feet are designed to carry a ‘normal’ weight. Any excess weight places great pressure on the bones, nerves, muscles and ligaments in the feet, which sooner or later will have consequences. Even pregnancy (in the last 10 weeks) can cause foot problems.
- age: as we get older ligaments, joints, tendons and muscles all change and can contribute to heel pain.
- unsupportive footwear: shoes with no support as well as thongs affect our walking pattern
- walking barefoot: especially on hard surfaces like concrete or tiles
- low arch/flat feet or over-pronation: altered foot mechanics can also cause or contribute to heel pain
We have published a blog recently that covers heel pain in more detail, to check it out, please click here.