It is a known fact that running puts a lot of stress on the feet. Over time, the pounding on hard surfaces can lead to the irritation of the base of the feet. The heel pain that develops is the usual condition that affects the ankle and foot. Luckily, those who love to run should not completely avoid running anymore. Take note that a sore heel typically resolves on its own with conservative measures if the aching heel is allowed to rest. A doctor must be consulted if the pain persists or becomes severe.
Possible causes of a sore heel
The most prevalent cause of a sore heel is plantar fasciitis. It is important to note that this condition involves the inflammation of the plantar fascia which is a ligament on the base of the foot that connects the ball of the foot to the heel. The other common causes of a sore heel include a bruised fat pad, bone spurs, heel bursitis, calcaneal stress fracture and Achilles tendonitis.
Home treatment for a sore heel
You can provide anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen to help minimize the pain and swelling. Just remember to ask the doctor first before using any new medications even over-the-counter.
The individual should try to rest the affected foot for at least a week and avoid standing or running for prolonged periods. Apply an ice pack on the sore heel for 10-15 minutes at least 2 times in a day to minimize the swelling and pain. Make sure that the running shoes used fit properly and provide adequate support. It is also advisable to purchase a heel cup or orthotic for added cushioning in the heel region. If you want to properly manage a sore heel, all you have to do is to enroll in a class on first aid today.
When to consult a doctor
It is best to consult a doctor if the individual experiences symptoms such as fever, extreme pain, inability to walk, inability to push on the toes or foot, tingling or numbness in the heel, pain that lasts for more than a month and pain while at rest.
Importance of stretching
Stretching the foot is vital in preventing a sore heel in the future. Take note that the calf stretch and plantar fascia stretch are beneficial for stretching tight muscles in the foot. These must be included in the exercise routine of the individual to prevent a sore heel from developing
If an individual decides to run for the first time or simply resuming an old running routine, it is best to steadily build up the mileage. Remember that running high mileages when the body is not properly conditioned can result to injury since the muscles become tired too quickly. It is vital to stretch after a proper warm-up exercise before a run to prevent injuries and pulled muscles. As for the running shoes, they must be replaced every 6 months depending on the mileage they are subjected to.