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By Thomas Neuman D.P.M
March 15, 2018
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Heel Pain  

If you are dealing with heel pain find out what might be going on.heel pain

While it’s nearly impossible to diagnose your problem without our Lancaster and Northridge, CA, podiatrist, Dr. Thomas Neuman, examining your foot, it is possible that your heel pain is the result of a condition known as plantar fasciitis. After all, this inflammatory condition is one of the most common causes of heel pain.

What is plantar fasciitis?

The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that runs from the toes along the soles to the heels. When the tissue becomes inflamed or irritated this leads to heel pain.

What causes plantar fasciitis?

There are many factors that can increase your chances of developing this condition. Those with high arches, flat feet, or other structural foot problems are more likely to develop this condition, as are those who are overweight or obese.

If you are a runner or athlete who suddenly increases the length or intensity of your workout you may also find yourself at an increased risk for heel pain.

What are the symptoms?

While heel pain is the most obvious sign that you are dealing with plantar fasciitis, where the pain is located can also give you an indication of whether or not this inflammatory condition is to blame. You may experience pain under the heel that also extends to the arches of the foot. You may find that the pain is worse when first waking up in the morning or after exercise (or standing for long periods of time).

Of course, a heel pain may also be the result of Achilles tendinitis, a heel spur, arthritis, or stress fractures, which is why it’s important that you turn to our Lancaster and Northridge foot doctor who can determine the cause and provide you with a treatment plan that will cater to your specific needs.

How is plantar fasciitis treated?

In most cases, symptoms can easily be managed through simple conservative options such as:

  • Wearing supportive shoes
  • Reducing activity level and avoiding high-impact activities
  • Bracing or splinting the foot
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers
  • Stretching and strengthening exercises

If symptoms don’t improve after a couple of weeks of at-home care then it’s time to see one of our podiatrists in Lancaster and Northridge.

Complete Foot & Ankle Care in Northridge and Lancaster, CA, is always ready to provide you with the comprehensive and understanding care you need. No matter whether you are dealing with a foot injury or just have questions about the services we offer, don’t hesitate to call our office to learn more.

By Thomas Neuman, D.P.M.
December 01, 2015
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Heel Pain  
Don’t let heel pain bench you. Get back to a pain-free life with these treatments.
 

You may not have heard about plantar fasciitis before but it could just be the condition that is causing your heel pain. If your Northridge, heel pain CA podiatrist Dr. Thomas Neuman has told you that you are suffering from plantar fasciitis-related heel pain find out how to best handle your condition.

First Course of Action

There are a variety of treatment options available to you and you’ll be happy to hear that they are more conservative and less invasive than other options. These are usually the first methods we use to reduce foot pain and inflammation and many patients find the relief they need through these measures alone:

  • Take time to rest. While this doesn’t mean you have to be on bed rest, try to limit any activities or exercises that could place too much pressure on your feet. Talk to your foot doctor in Northridge about other physical activities that you could do that won’t exacerbate your condition.
  • Take over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen, which can reduce both discomfort and inflammation. If you prefer to avoid medications as much as possible, then you can also ice your foot several times a day for up to 20 minutes at a time. Icing your foot can also go a long way to reduce swelling.
  • Opt for shoes that only provide the best support and shock absorption. Talk to your Northridge, CA podiatrist about whether arch support or custom-made orthotics could help.
  • Put on supportive shoes once you get up in the morning. Wearing only socks or going barefoot can make heel pain worse.
  • Perform certain exercises multiple times a day that stretch the calf and toes. We would be happy to tell you which exercises will help to strengthen your muscles and possibly prevent problems in the future.
  • We may also recommend wearing a night splint while asleep or wearing a cast during the day, which can help the foot heal while also making it possible for you to continue with your daily activities.

Other Options for Treating Plantar Fasciitis

Sometimes physical therapy will also be recommended, particularly to stretch out and strengthen the plantar fascia and Achilles tendon, two main sources of heel pain.

If conservative treatment options don’t treat symptoms after several weeks then corticosteroid injections may be the next step to alleviate your pain temporarily until the inflamed ligaments heal. For those dealing with heel pain for up to a year without experiencing relief, the next step may be surgery. Surgery is only advised for those with severe and stubborn cases of plantar fasciitis.

Don’t let heel pain get the better of you. Turn to your Northridge, CA foot doctor Dr. Neuman for the care your feet deserve.

By Thomas Neuman, D.P.M.
December 02, 2013
Category: Foot Care

Foot Care for RunnersIf you're a runner, it goes without saying that your feet take the brunt of the punishment. In fact, for runners the feet are more vulnerable to injury than any other part of the body. Luckily, both long-distance runners and casual joggers can improve their performance by paying extra attention to their feet and taking steps to prevent common foot problems. Poor fitting footwear is often the source of many foot problems caused by running. A visit to Thomas Neuman, D.P.M. can help you determine the best shoes for your foot structure.

A Runner's Road Block

While many running-related foot injures can result from a fall or twisted ankle, most running injuries are caused by overuse, meaning the majority of runners experience foot and ankle pain because they do too much for too long. Runners should be aware of the signs of foot problems that can slow them down if not treated promptly. Common foot and ankle injuries experienced by runners include:

Achilles Tendonitis: Achilles tendonitis and other calf-related injuries are prevalent in runners. Poor training, overuse and improper footwear are the three most common reasons for this condition. A sudden increase in distance or pace can strain the muscles and tendons in the foot and ankle, causing small tears within these structures that result in pain and inflammation. Appropriate shoes and training are the most important steps to preventing Achilles tendonitis. Conservative treatment includes, rest, ice, stretching, and sometimes orthotics or physical therapy.

Heel Pain: Runners develop heel pain more than any other foot-related injury. Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, which is the result of excess stress placed on a ligament in the bottom of the foot. Rest, stretching and support are the best ways to ease the pain and inflammation. Reduce your mileage and avoid hill and speed workouts. Stretch before and after you run, and ice your heel after each workout. Special splints and shoe inserts from Thomas Neuman, D.P.M. may also provide support and relief for your heel pain.

Stress Fractures: Stress fractures are small cracks in the surface of a bone. Runners generally notice gradual muscle soreness, stiffness, and pain on the affected bone, most often in the lower leg or the foot. Early diagnosis is critical as the small fracture can spread and eventually become a complete fracture of the bone. Stress fractures are typically caused by an increase in training that occurs more quickly than the body's ability to build up and strengthen the bone. If you have symptoms of a stress fracture, you should stop running immediately and see a podiatrist at our Northridge or Lancaster office. This injury can keep a runner off the roads for several weeks and is not an injury that you can run through. Depending on the severity of the stress fracture, a cast may be necessary.

If you experience chronic foot pain from running, make an appointment with a podiatrist at our Northridge or Lancaster office. Leaving foot injuries untreated could result in more serious conditions, ultimately keeping you from your best performance. Keep in mind that these are not the only foot ailments caused by running, and when at-home foot care isn't effective, you'll need to be evaluated by a podiatrist. As in most cases, prevention is your best treatment. Good footwear, proper training and recognizing a problem before it becomes serious are your keys to staying on the road and avoiding foot injuries.