FAQ - Heel Pain
Why does my heel hurt in the morning?
If your morning heel pain consists of sharp discomfort under your heel, the likely cause is plantar fasciitis. This condition is a swelling and inflammation of the plantar fascia, a flat, thin ligament that lies at the bottom of your foot and connects the heel bone to your toes. This tissue helps support your arch, but with overuse or overpronation, the stress can cause the outer fibers of the ligament to develop tiny fissures or tears. It hurts worse in the morning because your plantar fascia contracts at night while you are asleep and becomes shorter. The first time you put weight on it in the morning, it is too tight to stretch out and pulls against the surface of your heel where it is attached. After you take those first few steps, it gradually stretches again and the pain can go away—at least until the next time you sit for a while or sleep. For expert help in treating the pain in your heel, schedule an appointment with Aadvanced Foot Care Associates in New York by calling (516) 822-9595 in Plainview, (718) 969-2266 in Flushing, or (718) 896-4433 in Rego Park.
How do I avoid foot pain while wearing high heels?
If you wear high heels every day, your feet will hurt. There may be a few things you can do, however, to avoid high heel pain and decrease your chances of forming corns and calluses, serious deformities, and damaged feet. Choose heels two inches or shorter in height to lessen pressure on the ball of the foot. Make sure the back of the heel fits snugly, so your feet don’t slide forward and press your toes into the front. Avoid stilettos in favor of a chunkier heel to distribute your weight evenly and improve balance. Buy shoes large enough to use foam or gel inserts in them to compensate for the loss of fat pads in your feet. Platform or thicker soles are better, too. Wearing heels for extended periods every day can cause your muscles to cramp and your Achilles tendon to shorten. Counteract that by religiously stretching your feet and Achilles whenever you remove your shoes—several times throughout the day, if possible. Aadvanced Foot Care Associates has many more tips on shoe choice and keeping your feet pain free. Call us today in Rego Park at (718) 896-4433, Flushing at (718) 969-2266, and Plainview at (516) 822-9595.
Can orthotics help relieve my heel pain?
Orthotics for heel pain are one of the more common treatments that we use to relieve discomfort from sore heels. A variety of factors contribute to developing heel issues, particularly plantar fasciitis. Since the problem is an overuse condition, relieving the pressure and tension on the heel is key to your comfort. A custom orthotic controls abnormal motion and adds extra padding under the heel bone. It can also correct biomechanical issues, reducing the strain on the plantar fascia. If you’re struggling with heel pain, orthotics may be your answer. The type of support that will benefit you the most will depend on your individual needs and unique feet. Let our team of specialists at Advanced Foot Care Associates examine your feet and design the best inserts for your problem. You can use our online contact form or call any of our three locations to make an appointment: (718) 896-4433 for Rego Park, (516) 822-9595 for Plainview, or (718) 969-2266 for Flushing, NY.
How is plantar fasciitis treated?
Plantar fasciitis treatment focuses on relieving the pain in your heel. Injury to the ligament under your foot is common in people who overpronate (feet roll inward too far when you walk) or have high arches or flat feet. Therefore, wearing shoes or custom orthotics that properly support your arch and correct improper foot mechanics can be very helpful in reducing your discomfort. Resting and icing also help, and we can recommend certain pain relievers as well. Sometimes treatment involves medication injected into the heel or the use of night splints.
You can help head off problems by doing toe, calf, and towel stretches every day—we’ll show you how. Surgery remains an option if 6 to 12 months of conservative treatment haven’t helped. For assistance in getting rid of heel pain, contact the experts at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates by calling (718) 969-2266 in Flushing, (718) 896-4433 in Rego Park, and (516) 822-9595 in Plainview, NY.
What are some causes of plantar fasciitis?
The plantar fascia is a flat band of tissue that connects your heel bone with your toes. It expands with each step and contracts again as weight is removed. The causes of plantar fasciitis include things that cause too much strain to this ligament.
If your foot rolls to the inside too much, or if you pound on hard surfaces while running, extra stress is put on the ligament. This is compounded by too much weight, tight calf muscles, tight Achilles tendons, and high arches or flat feet. Eventually, the ligament can stretch too far and develop tiny tears. The damaged tissue swells and becomes inflamed; this inflammation is plantar fasciitis.
The expert podiatrists at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates deal with injuries like this every day. Give them a call in Rego Park: (718) 896-4433, Plainview: (516) 822-9595, or Flushing: (718) 969-2266 and get help for your sore feet.
What stretches can I do to relieve heel pain?
Stretches to relieve heel pain are those that keep the plantar fascia strong and supple. This ligament can tighten up while you sleep or sit for long periods. Begin by flexing your foot up and down 10 times before getting out of bed in the morning. Massage the area from side to side as well. Do toe stretches to keep the tissue limber. Sit in a chair with your heel on the floor. Reach down with your hand and pull back gently on your big toe, holding for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat 2 to 4 times, several times a day. You can also sit on the floor, wrap a towel around the ball of your foot and gently pull your toes toward you, keeping your knee flat on the floor.
If your heel pain continues, let the experts at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates in New York diagnose what is going on and find the right treatment. Call our Rego Park office at (718) 896-4433, our Flushing location at (718) 969-2266, and our Plainview office at (516) 822-9595 for relief from your discomfort.
Can stretching help my Achilles tendon pain?
Right after your injury, stretching may not be the best thing to do. First aid includes things like RICE therapy (Rest, Icing, Compression, Elevation), and taking any oral medication we may recommend for your pain. However, once the Achilles tendon begins to heal and the pain and swelling lessen, stretches to recondition it and your muscles are crucial to regaining full use of your foot and ankle and preventing future problems.
Your Achilles attaches your calf muscles to the heel and bones of the foot to allow for movement. When stiff, tight calf muscles pull on the tendon, it becomes painful. Doing wall stretches, first with your back leg straight, and then repeated with it bent, are a great way to loosen up the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles in your calves and reduce the tension on your Achilles, thus getting rid of the pain.
For more info on which stretches help most and how to do them properly, call the expert podiatrists at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates in Plainview (516) 822-9595, Rego Park (718) 896-4433, or Flushing (718) 969-2266 and set up an appointment. We’ll help you get your Achilles back in shape and free of pain.
Does Shockwave Therapy hurt?
Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) is being used increasingly to treat chronic heel pain from plantar fasciitis or heel spurs. When other more conservative methods such as rest, icing, pain relievers, or use of orthotics are not bringing relief from pain, this treatment can be tried before resorting to surgery.
The therapy involves a device that collects sound waves in a chamber and targets them through a fluid filled membrane to the painful area on your heel. This therapy encourages new healthy tissue to grow and replace the damaged tissue. The procedure is not painful, although you might feel a pulsing or vibration at the treatment site and hear snapping or popping sound as the shockwaves are being transmitted. Patients have reported a marked reduction of pain, sometimes immediately after the first treatment.
If your heel pain is not responding to conservative treatment, contact Aadvanced Foot Care Associates at our main offices in Rego Park at (718) 896-4433 or Plainview at (516) 822-9595 to find out if you are a candidate for ESWT or you can request an appointment online.