What is heel & arch pain?
When you step out of bed in the morning, are the first steps you take filled with pain in the heels of your feet? You may have plantar fasciitis or heel pain. Heel pain is one of the most common orthopedic problems many people face, yet many leave it untreated and think it will go away on its own. That’s not the case, heel pain can worsen, so it’s a good idea to visit a foot doctor. Some long-term effects of heel pain can lead to knee, hip, and back problems because heel pain can affect the way you walk.
What causes heel & arch pain?
Plantar fasciitis or heel pain is caused when the plantar fascia ligaments in your feet are exposed to extended pressure such as running. In turn, after the activity is completed, inflammation occurs right after getting up in the morning or after a period of sitting. Essentially, heel pain develops after you have stopped the strenuous activity.
Let’s explore the main causes of heel pain:
- Running long distances on pavements and hard floor surfaces with improper shoes.
- Sudden weight gain due to pregnancy or obesity.
- Working jobs which require standing for long periods of time such as hairdressers, restaurant servers, and retail positions where you’re expected to stand for the whole shift.
What is the best treatment for heel pain?
The good news is that stretching is the best treatment for heel pain. By doing the following stretches every day for 20 minutes, you can say goodbye to heel pain forever!
Plantar Fascia-Specific Stretching Program
- Cross the affected leg over your other leg.
- Take hold of your affected foot and pull your toes back towards shin. This action creates a stretch in the arch of the foot.
- Gently rub the thumb of your unaffected side left to right over the arch of the affected foot. The plantar fascia should feel firm, like a guitar string.
- Hold the stretch for 10-15 seconds. Perform a set of ten repetitions.
- Stand in front of a wall at arm’s length.
- Place your right foot behind your left foot.
- Slowly bend your left leg forward.
- Hold your right knee straight and your right heel on the ground.
- Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds and release.
- Reverse the position of your legs, and do ten repetitions.
Fascia Ball Stretch
- Freeze a golf ball and massage the fascia.
- Sit down in a chair and roll the frozen golf ball under the affected foot, starting from the front and moving it back and forth.
- Place pressure on the affected area of the foot for 15 – 20 seconds before moving to the area of the foot.
- Roll the ball back and forth over the entire foot.
If you have practiced these foot stretching exercises and continue to experience heel pain, we advise you to visit our foot and ankle clinic located in Doylestown, PA.
Podiatrist Dr. Ken Lefkowitz and his professional staff are here to assist you in treating heel pain and preventing future occurrences from developing.
To make an appointment with Quality Foot Care, please call 215-230-9707 or fill our contact form and we will contact you within 1-2 business days to come in for a consultation at our clinic located in Doylestown, PA.