Heel pain affects many people and can range from mild to moderate, causing various severities of issues standing or walking at any stage. However, knowing about the common causes of heel pain and learning how to identify its signs and symptoms can help you get the help you need as soon as possible. Find out more about heel pain with your podiatrist at The Foot and Ankle Group in Mount Laurel, NJ, Philadelphia, PA, Bordentown, NJ, and Columbus, NJ.
Where does my heel pain come from?
Heel pain has many sources, but some common causes include:
- plantar fasciitis
- stress fracture
- tarsal tunnel syndrome
- heel spur
- Achilles tendonitis
- injury or trauma
Diagnosing Heel Pain
Your foot doctor diagnoses the cause of heel pain during a physical examination at their office. They will begin by visually inspecting the foot and searching for any abnormalities, symptoms, or underlying conditions. They may take an x-ray to help further explore the cause of your heel pain. Often, heel pain comes from an underlying condition but can occur due to simple overuse or a strain. Your doctor will help you find the root of your heel pain to get back on your feet as soon as possible.
Treating Heel Pain in Mount Laurel, NJ, Philadelphia, PA, Bordentown, NJ, and Columbus, NJ
Your podiatrist will treat your heel pain depending on its cause. In some cases, the RICE method is enough to help cure heel pain. This method involves resting as much as possible, icing the foot several times daily, using compression wraps to help control swelling, and elevating the foot over the heart. However, your doctor may suggest lifestyle changes, prescription medications, physical therapy, injection therapy, or even surgery depending on your condition.
For more information on heel pain, please contact your podiatrist at The Foot and Ankle Group in Mount Laurel, NJ, Philadelphia, PA, Bordentown, NJ, and Columbus, NJ. Call to schedule your appointment today!
- Mount Laurel, NJ: (856) 234-0195
- Philadelphia, PA: (215) 332-5300
- Bordentown, NJ: (609) 291-0960
- Columbus, NJ: (609) 298-7000
You've experienced stabbing, shooting pain in your feet for months, and you notice tingling and numbness, too. Could this be neuropathy? Check with your primary care physician to see if you have diabetes or other autoimmune problem, and then contact the Foot and Ankle Group in Philadelphia for treatment of your neuropathy. Avoid the disability and lifestyle-limiting symptoms of this nerve condition. Your team of eight podiatrists are experts in diseases, conditions, and deformities of the foot and ankle, and they can help.
What is neuropathy?
It's an irritation and deterioration of the peripheral nerves associated with the feet and hands. With neuropathy, comes miscommunication with the central nervous system and intermittent to continuous symptoms of:
- Loss of movement and coordination
- Loss of sensation leading to injury
Neuropathy frequently stems from serious health conditions such as:
- Diabetes, and its characteristic blood sugar fluctuations
- Arthritis and its associated joint breakdown and inflammation
- Heredity (it can run in families)
Some cancer therapy medications also damage peripheral nerves, says the American Podiatric Medical Association. However, the APMA stresses that diabetes is the most common cause. Research shows that 60 to 70 percent of diabetics suffer from some degree of neuropathy.
If you have peripheral neuropathy...
See your podiatrist in Philadelphia or at one of the other three locations of the Foot and Ankle Group. Your foot doctor will review your medical history, symptoms, and medications. Plus, the doctor will inspect your feet, ask you to walk and note your range of motion.
Many people benefit from an individualized treatment plan to control their symptoms. Interventions may include:
- Over-the-counter NSAIDS to reduce inflammation and pain
- Prescription steroids to control inflammation
- TENS treatments (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) performed in-office
- Strict blood sugar control
People with diabetes benefit from the communication between the professional team at the Foot and Ankle Group and primary care physicians. Together with patients, they formulate ways to lower blood sugars to a healthy level, monitor feet for ulcer formation, encourage a program of regular exercise and more.
Your podiatrists at the Foot and Ankle Group have a wealth of knowledge regarding the causes and treatments of peripheral neuropathy. Routine office visits are a must. To arrange yours, please contact one of our four locations in the Philadelphia area. We have early morning and evening hours for your convenience.
Find out how to prevent foot complications from happening to you.
If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes the first thing you want to do is work with your doctor to create a treatment plan that will keep your blood sugar in check. Making sure your blood sugar is within a healthy range is key to preventing health problems. Of course, one of the most commonly affected areas of the body when you have diabetes is your feet. Our Philadelphia, PA, podiatrists are here to tell you what you can do to prevent diabetic-related foot complications.
Examine Feet Daily
The only way you are going to know if there is a problem with your feet is if you are checking them out thoroughly every day to look for symptoms such as swelling, redness, tenderness to the touch, corns and calluses, cuts, open wounds and other problems that could easily turn more serious. Detecting these problems now and getting the proper care from our Philadelphia foot doctor could prevent serious complications from happening.
Stay Physically Active
One way to keep your blood sugar levels in check is to get up and moving; however, we understand that if you are new to a workout routine you may want to sit down and talk to us about how to start. Furthermore, you’ll want to make sure you have the right shoes and perhaps even custom orthotics to ensure that your feet don’t cause you problems as you begin your new workout regimen.
Keep Feet Clean
Your feet, just like the rest of you, need to be properly cleaned every day. When you get in the shower or the tub make sure you are using soap and water to clean every area of your feet, including between toes. This is a surefire way to get rid of bacteria responsible for infections such as athlete’s foot. Once you get out of the shower, make sure to completely and thoroughly dry off your feet.
Always Wear Shoes
Going barefoot is a bad idea when you have diabetes. This is because a lot of people with diabetes also have some degree of nerve damage in their feet and don’t know when they’ve stepped on something that could cause a foot injury. Wearing socks and shoes ensures that you keep your feet free from cuts, sores and wounds.
Trim Your Toenail
Long toenails can also increase your chances for ingrown toenails. To prevent this problem it’s important to keep your toenails trimmed regularly. Toenails should be trimmed straight across (never at an angle) and should be level with the tips of your toes. Toenails that are trimmed too low are also at risk for an ingrown toenail. Having trouble trimming your nails yourself? No problem; our podiatrist can do that for you!
The Foot & Ankle Group in Philadelphia, PA, and Mount Laurel, Bordentown, and Columbus, NJ, is dedicated to providing patients of all ages with the proper foot and ankle care they need. If you have diabetes you may have questions along the way about your foot care regimen. Turn to our expert podiatric team anytime.
Find out if you could have a sprained ankle and what you can do about it.
Whether you were in a car accident or someone tackled you the wrong way during a game, there are many reasons people face ankle injuries. In fact, sports are a major culprit when it comes to both foot and ankle injuries. While our Philadelphia, PA, podiatrists hope that athletes are taking the necessary precautions to keep their feet and ankles protected, you should visit us if you think you have a sprained ankle.
Common symptoms of a sprained ankle include:
- Limited range of motion
- Instability or weakness
- A popping sound (at the time of injury)
- The inability to put weight on the ankle or walk
What causes a sprained ankle?
There are many reasons people deal with ankle sprains. In fact, fast, shifting movements such as the ones we see in soccer, basketball, or football can cause athletes to roll their ankles. When the ankle rolls the outside ligaments of the ankle can overstretch or even tear, resulting in a sprain.
Sprains can be mild to severe, depending on the extent of ligament damage. Since it’s impossible to tell how much damage has occurred to the ligaments of the ankle it’s important that you turn to our foot doctors in Philadelphia for a proper evaluation. We will also run imaging tests to determine the cause and the extent of the damage so we can create an effective and individualized treatment plan.
How is an ankle sprain treated?
Most ankle sprains can be managed through a conservative approach known as the RICE method. This stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. It’s important that you stay off the ankle and give it time to rest and heal. A podiatrist will be able to tell you when you can return to your normal activities.
To ease swelling and pain, ice the ankle for up to 20 minutes at a time 2 or 3 times a day, especially for the first three days after the injury. This can keep swelling down while also numbing the pain. Applying compression bandages to the ankle can also reduce swelling, as can elevating your foot above your heart whenever you are seated.
Certain pain relievers can help temporarily take the edge off when pain gets too intense. Your podiatrist might also recommend physical therapy or certain exercises to strengthen the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the ankle to prevent chronic instability. Only in severe cases is surgery recommended to repair the damaged ligament.
The Foot & Ankle Group is committed to providing its patients with comprehensive, quality foot care. We offer locations in Philadelphia, PA, and Mount Laurel, Bordentown, and Columbus, NJ, to serve you better. If you think you might be dealing with a sprained ankle, call one of our offices today.
You shouldn't give up on finding a solution for your chronic, worsening heel pain. Help may be available from a podiatrist at The Foot and Ankle Group, which has locations in Mount Laurel, Bordentown, and Columbus, NJ, as well as Philadelphia, PA. It's a practice staffed by a team of podiatrists who are dedicated to convenient, quality foot care.
When Heel Pain Becomes More Than an Annoyance
Everyone feels a little bit of heel pain every now and again, usually due to wearing a certain pair of shoes that may be a little too tight. But when the pain becomes more than just a minor annoyance, it is something you should talk to a foot doctor about. Heel pain can become a debilitating foot condition that affects your ability to work, move about, and participate in your favorite athletic activities. When heel pain continues to persist even when you’re not standing or walking, that is a particularly urgent sign that you need immediate treatment
Common Reasons for Heel Pain
One of the most common causes of heel pain is a condition called plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia ligament that runs underneath your foot, connecting the toes to the heel, becomes inflamed and damaged. It is often related to flat foot (also called fallen arches) and is common in runners. Overpronation is also a potential cause—it happens when too much pressure is put on the inner parts of your feet when you walk.
How Your Podiatrist Will Help
There are a number of ways that a podiatrist in Mount Laurel, Bordentown, Columbus, NJ and Philadelphia, PA, can help ease your heel pain. Here are some of the treatments you will explore:
- Ice or heat therapy
- Healing foot exercises
- Customized orthotic inserts
- Extracorporeal Shock Wave Treatments (ESWT)
- Heel surgery to remove spurs or repair damaged tissue
Get Help with Heel Pain
Heel pain doesn't have to be a permanent part of your life. Call The Foot and Ankle Group, with locations in Mount Laurel, Bordentown, Columbus, NJ as well as Philadelphia, PA, to talk about treatment options.
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