Self-treatment options for heel pain
Heel pain is very common. Fortunately this condition can be alleviated by following a few simple steps, which are all inexpensive and can be done at home. Most people will find heel pain relief by following these steps; if none of the treatment options below work for you, please consult your with a medical advisor.
More than 70 percent of heel pain cases are found in individuals over fifty years of age as they are affected with weak ankles, over-pronation, and excessive body weight. For proper upkeep of your body, it is important to keep body mass within limit. Excessive body weight and obesity create untoward pressure on your legs. The basic step towards heel pain relief is to keeping body mass within control. Another basic requirement for your aching heels is proper rest of your feet. Unnecessary strain or excessive exercising could cause your heels to develop a chronic ache which stays on. All activities that lay additional stress on plantar fascia are to be discontinued till the painful condition disappears completely.
A. Stretch and massage the Plantar Fascia
Plantar Fasciitis is a condition where your heels become painful on getting up from bed. The best way to get relief of this pain is to begin an elementary stretching exercise for your affected foot. Lying in bed stretch your affected foot and move it upwards and downwards for twenty seconds. Repeat this exercise four times. Then after getting up stay seated with your feet on the floors. Now place a rolling pin or tennis ball under your affected foot and roll it forwards and backwards for about twenty seconds. Repeat this exercise four times.(More heel pain relief exercises..)
Never start your day on barefoot. Always use a pair of slippers or sandals when walking on hard surface after leaving the bed in the morning. Thereafter throughout the day perform a number of stretching exercises for your feet. Exercises like wall push-ups, heel lifting on step edge, towel stretching with foot, and marble lifts are extremely helpful in reducing heel pain. All these exercises could be done at anytime of the day, but it is advisable to stick to a particular time schedule.
B. Hot & Cold Therapy
This pain relief therapy is easily done at homes. Take two tubs of hot and cold water. Dip your affected leg in either of the tubs for five minutes alternately. Half an hour of this therapy would provide you immense relief from heel pains. Alternatively you could also apply hot and cold gel packs to your affected foot. Application of hot packs in the mornings and cold packs in evenings will have a curative action on your aching heels. Another option is to freeze a plastic bottle filled with water and roll it under the foot for approx. 10 minutes. This will cool the inflammation and make the plantar fascia more flexible at the same time!
C. Orthotics for heel pain relief
Orthotic inserts are very effective in reliving pains from heels and foot. These specially designed inserts are placed inside footwear to distribute the pressure evenly on your sole so that your body movements become regularised. Orthotic insoles have multiple arches that help in reducing heel pain from over-pronations. Sustained use of orthotic inserts help in bringing back the correct alignment between your heel and ankle. This is a biomechanical process which takes some time to get rectified. Regular use of these inserts eases heel pain substantially. (Read more..)
D. Night Splints
Heel pains are markedly reduced by using night splints. These padded splints provide delicate tension to plantar fascia to keep it flexed when you are asleep. This prevents the tissue from tightening up and causing your heels to pain. (Read more..)
Narrow tapes are applied across your painful plantar fascia to take off stress from your foot and heels. This tape when left overnight not only eases the pain but also helps in curing it. This process could be repeated till your pain totally subsides.
Anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and aspirin, and non-steroidal medicines have relieving effects on aching heels. These drugs provide temporary relief and are not recommended for regular treatment of heel pains. Cortisone injections are also used at times for providing relief from aching heels. This drug is more effective than usual anti-inflammatory medications in reducing heel pain, but could have detrimental side effects. However for any drug administration for heel pain relief, it is always advisable to consult a doctor.
This is the very last option left if none of the non-invasive and therapeutic remedies are unable to provide heel pain relief. It is to be performed by experts, as inexperienced hands could cause damages to nerves or result in other injuries and infections. (Read more..)