Not all foot and ankle problems warrant an appointment with a podiatrist. In some cases, rest, ice or even a change in footwear is enough to reduce the pain and get you back on your feet. But when foot pain and discomfort cannot be resolved by home treatment, you need a professional’s care—someone who specializes in foot-related injuries and disorders.
The Achilles is the largest and strongest tendon in the body. It is located in the back of the lower leg and connects the heel bone to the calf muscle. This tendon is crucial as it facilitates walking and running by helping to raise the heel off of the ground. Even though the Achilles tendon can withstand immense force, it is also very vulnerable with injuries requiring prompt treatment.
When the Achilles tendon becomes inflamed from excessive use, tendonitis can weaken it over time and cause small tears. Athletes are at a high risk for Achilles tendon injuries, which often occurs at the start of a new exercise or training program. It can also be due to not having enough rest or recovery time.
Any time you experience pain, tenderness or swelling along the Achilles tendon, visit our office in Tampa, FL for professional diagnosis and treatment, as treatment should begin immediately for the best results.
Heel Pain (Plantar Fasciitis)
Commonly caused by plantar fasciitis, heel pain is an inflammation of the long dense band of connective tissue that runs from the heel to the ball of the foot. If you experience repeated strain on the plantar fascia, it can cause tiny tears in the ligament. As tension and tearing increase, so does the inflammation and irritation of the affected area. To reduce the pain associated with your heel pain, it is important to visit your podiatrist, in addition to the following:
- Rest by limiting and/or avoiding activities that make your feet hurt.
- Ice to reduce pain and swelling by icing the affected area.
- Stretch your heel throughout the day, especially first thing in the morning.
- Wear shoes that provide good arch support and a cushioned sole.
Feet are invariably the most ignored parts of the body. Too many people dismiss foot health until there is a serious, painful problem. Whenever a foot or ankle problem lasts for several days, contact your podiatrist. Other signs that indicate a worsening condition and warrant medical attention, include:
- Foot discoloration
- Pain and swelling in one foot
- A foot sore or wound that doesn’t heal
How often you should visit a podiatrist depends on the individual. Regular appointments can help you better understand the stresses and strains put on your feet and lower legs on a daily basis. Long-term care and prevention is also extremely important for individuals with diabetes, as podiatrists help prevent ulcerations and loss of limb with early diagnosis and care.
Remember, foot pain should never be taken lightly. Always consult your Tampa, FL podiatrist for proper diagnosis of foot disorders. Are you a patient of Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists? If so, we would love to hear about your experiences below!