Many conditions can cause heel pain, from plantar fasciitis to arthritis. One uncommon but still painful cause of heel discomfort is heel spurs, which are calcium deposits that cause bony bumps to form on your heel and lead to pain that hinders your normal movement.
Fortunately, the compassionate provider team at South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers has extensive experience treating many foot and ankle problems, including heel spurs. Our practice is dedicated to finding the root cause of your foot pain and treating it so you can get back to enjoying life as soon as possible!
Why do heel spurs form?
Heel spurs often emerge because of plantar fasciitis, a painful condition where the plantar fascia — a tough band of connective tissue that attaches your heel bone to the ball of your foot — becomes inflamed.
Osteoarthritis, ligament and muscle strains, and tearing of the membrane that covers the heel bone can also lead to heel spurs. Your body produces them as a response to these stresses.
You’re at higher risk for heel spurs if you participate in athletic activities that require significant jumping or running, but you’re also more likely to develop the condition as you age, if you live with diabetes, or if your job requires you to stand for long periods.
Physical traits also raise your risk, including having flat feet or high arches.
Pain from heel spurs can become constant, but it can also be occasional and bothersome when you’re engaging in physical activity like running or walking.
Pain can be sharp and sudden when your feet first hit the floor in the morning or when rising from a seated position, but it can also become dull and achy.
How can I get help for heel spur pain?
When you visit the South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers for help with heel pain, your podiatrist discusses your history of pain with you and what activities you do frequently, evaluates you by observing your gait (the way you walk), and tests the strength of your foot.
They’re also interested in looking at the shoes you wear most of the time, because wear patterns can reveal a lot about your movement. Finally, imaging tests can tell a lot to your provider.
Conservative treatment approaches first
If you’re diagnosed with heel spurs, your podiatrist typically starts out recommending conservative treatments like:
- Rice (rest, ice, compression, elevation) protocol
- Wearing a splint at night
- Prescription orthotics (shoe inserts)
- Physical therapy
- MLS laser therapy
- Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy
MLS laser therapy is a painless, noninvasive, FDA-approved treatment that employs light energy to repair damaged cells to reduce pain and swelling. PRP therapy harnesses your body’s own healing powers to bring you relief.
Both treatments are advanced options and represent true innovation in treating a range of foot conditions.
Don’t let the pain of heel spurs slow you down. Call us to schedule a visit at the South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers location that’s most convenient to you, in Royal Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Palm Beach Gardens, or Belle Glade, Florida.
You can also request an appointment here on our website. For your convenience, we offer early morning, evening, and Saturday appointments.