Heel spurs happen, but they don’t have to sideline you for long. Our dedicated team of experienced podiatrists is here to provide you with comprehensive care and effective solutions for heel spurs. We understand the discomfort and limitations that heel spurs can cause, and we’re committed to helping you regain your mobility and quality of life.
What are Heel Spurs?
Heel spurs are bony growths that can develop on the underside of the heel bone, often causing pain and discomfort. These growths can vary in size and shape and are usually associated with inflammation of the nearby tissues, such as the plantar fascia – the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, connecting the heel bone to the toes.
Heel spurs can be a source of significant pain and can affect your daily activities. Understanding the symptoms, causes, and available treatments for heel spurs is essential in managing this condition effectively.
Symptoms of Heel Spurs
The most common symptom of heel spurs is intense pain in the heel, especially when standing or walking for prolonged periods. This pain can be sharp and stabbing, making daily activities a challenge. It’s important to note that not everyone with heel spurs experiences pain; some individuals may have these growths without any noticeable discomfort.
In addition to heel pain, other symptoms may include tenderness, inflammation, and a feeling of tightness in the arch of the foot. Pain associated with heel spurs is often at its worst in the morning when taking the first steps after getting out of bed. Over time, as you move and walk, the pain may subside somewhat, only to return after extended periods of activity.
What Causes Heel Spurs?
Heel spurs often develop as a by-product of a condition called plantar fasciitis. Plantar Fasciitis occurs when the plantar fascia becomes inflamed or damaged due to excessive strain or pressure. Over time, this inflammation can lead to the formation of a heel spur. Other contributing factors may include poor footwear choices, repetitive activities that put stress on the feet, and obesity.
Plantar Fasciitis is typically the underlying cause of heel spurs. The plantar fascia, which acts as a shock absorber for the foot, can become overstressed due to factors such as excessive running, walking, or standing. When the plantar fascia is subjected to repeated strain, small tears can develop, leading to inflammation and eventually the development of a bony protrusion – the heel spur.
By-product of Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar Fasciitis is a common condition that often precedes the development of heel spurs. It is characterized by pain and discomfort in the heel or arch of the foot, particularly during the first steps taken after periods of rest. The pain associated with plantar fasciitis is caused by the inflammation of the plantar fascia and its attachment point on the heel bone.
If left untreated, plantar fasciitis can lead to chronic pain and the formation of heel spurs. The persistent pulling of the inflamed fascia on the heel bone triggers the bone to respond by developing a bony growth. This is the body’s attempt to provide additional support and stability to the area.