What’s the Best Way to Treat Heel Pain in the Morning?
An estimated one million people visit the physician each year seeking relief from heel pain.
If you have experienced this kind of discomfort, you know how debilitating it can be. For some, the pain begins as soon as they wake up and intensifies throughout the day as they put pressure on the heel.
If you suffer from heel pain in the morning, there are simple steps you can take to help alleviate your condition. In this article, we’ll look at causes of heel pain and will share a few of the top exercises, stretches, and tips that may help you find much-needed relief.
Understanding Your Heel Pain
There are several reasons for heel pain, whether it’s most intense when you’re lying in bed or when on your feet. Most commonly, severe heel pain may be caused due to one of the following:
- Plantar fasciitis—a condition where the band of connective tissue on the bottom of the foot becomes inflamed.
- Achilles tendinitis—inflammation of the Achilles tendon, which wraps around the back of the ankle and connects to the heel bone.
- Bursitis—occurs when a small sack of inflamed tissue irritates the heel.
- Rheumatoid arthritis—known as RA for short, is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the joints.
Any of these conditions can cause your heel to feel stiff or achy, even cause severe pain. The pain could also be associated with excessive pronation, a condition characterized by rolling the foot inward while walking.
Heel pain may also stem from an injury, rather than a medical condition. The most commonly associated ones include stress fractures and bone bruises.
It is highly recommended to consult a foot specialist to diagnose the cause of the pain and get the best treatment for the condition. In addition to the treatment and plan provided by the foot specialist, there are the following ways to help strengthen the heel area and reduce pain.
Exercises and Tips to Alleviate Heel Pain in the Morning
If your heel pain is mild to moderate, these at-home exercises and tips may help. Always practice caution and start as gentle as possible to avoid further discomfort.
A gentle massage can help relieve the tension on the bottom of your foot. Try rolling a tennis ball back and forth from your toes to your heel or use a foam roller on the same region.
You can also hold your foot in your hands and use your thumbs to apply soothing pressure to your heel area.
Before going to bed, fill a small bottle with water and freeze it overnight. When you wake up, you can wrap it in a towel and run it along your heel to help reduce some inflammation and relieve pain.
Light stretches can help relieve the strain you’re feeling in your heels. Sitting on the side of your bed, cross your aching foot over your opposite knee.
Then, gently pull back on the toes of your affected foot, using your hand on the same side. Aim the stretch toward your shin, and hold it for around 10 seconds. Relax and repeat, or switch legs if the pain is present in both feet.
Treat Your Heel Pain
The exercises, techniques, and tips provided in this article may help reduce heel pain in the morning.
However, patients suffering from such conditions should consult a foot specialist at the first sign of such pain or discomfort as the condition may worsen if left untreated. To find long-term relief from your pain, consult The Foot Doc™.