“Why does my heel hurt?”
That’s a big question. The truth is, there are a lot of possible reasons. Your feet are a lot more complex than you probably think. In fact, about a quarter of all the bones in your entire body are located at ankle level and below. Now throw in tendons, muscles, nerves, fascia, and other structures. The bottom line? Yes, feet are supposed to last, and they’re not supposed to hurt you. But a lot can go wrong.
At the Southern Nevada Heel Pain Center, one of the very first things we’ll do is diagnose one or more conditions, and one or more causes. “Those sound like the same thing,” you might muse. Not really, though.
By “condition,” we mean what structures or tissues have been damaged. For example, the most common heel pain condition is plantar fasciitis, which is the result of stretching or tearing of the fascia tissue on the bottom of the foot, where the arch meets the heel. Pinpointing the exact location and severity of the injury is one important component of putting together an appropriate treatment plan.
The other component is the “cause” or causes. Continuing with our plantar fasciitis example, there are many ways that the plantar fascia could be stretched or damaged. In one patient, the problem might be mostly linked to running long distances in low-quality shoes, or frequent sports participation without appropriate cross-training or rest days. For others, there may be a structural deformity in the foot itself (such as flat feet) or abnormality in the walking gait (such as overpronation) that puts extra stress on the arches and heels. Standing all day at work without any cushioning at your station might be a contributor.
As you can see, even if two people have the exact same “condition,” the real underlying contributing factors to their heel pain might be quite different. And as you can imagine, the best treatment protocols will also vary depending on what kinds of structures or behaviors are giving you the most trouble, as well as what kinds of activities you need your feet to perform on a day-to-day basis.
If you want to find out why, exactly, your heels are hurting and what you can do about them, book an appointment with Dr. Noah Levine at the Southern Nevada Heel Pain Center. We understand that every foot and patient is different, with unique needs and concerns. And because we can offer years of experience and many of the latest and greatest technologies (such as shockwave therapy), we can craft a treatment plan that’s truly personalized to meet your needs. To schedule your appointment, give us a call today at (702) 839-2010.