Heel pain is an extremely common condition, affecting people of all ages and genders. It’s interesting to note that for every kilometer walked, our feet absorb approximately 60 tons of stress, which can generate significant tension, weakening the tissues over time.

However, walking is not the only factor that affects heel pain. Problems such as plantar fasciitis, tendinitis, and other similar conditions are also frequent causes of discomfort in this area. The good news is that these conditions are treatable. To learn more and to find out about the available treatment options, we invite you to continue reading our article.

Main causes of heel pain

Heel pain can occur for different reasons, some more severe and others mild. In order to have a proper treatment, it is important to know them, since the pain can also vary in area. Therefore, here we present them to you:

Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include pain in the back of the heel when you stand up, and this occurs when the plantar fascia ligament is damaged. With this condition, you may need to practice special exercises and treatment prescribed by a professional podiatrist to relieve heel pain.

Achilles tendinitis

Achilles tendinitis, a condition characterized by the inflammation of the tendon that connects the calf muscles to the heel, is often the result of overuse of this area. This condition not only causes swelling and tenderness in the tendon but can also lead to notable heel pain, especially during and after physical activities.


Bursitis is a condition that occurs when the bursa, a small fluid-filled sac located near large joints, becomes inflamed. This structure serves a crucial function in the body, helping to absorb shock and reduce friction between tissues, such as bones, tendons and muscles, during movement. One of the common manifestations of bursitis, especially when it affects the bursa located in the heel area, is heel pain.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome is a condition that commonly manifests as heel pain and is frequently associated with trauma to the foot or ankle. This condition involves compression or injury to the posterior tibial nerve, which runs from the back of the leg to the ankle and foot. This nerve compression can cause symptoms such as sharp pain, tingling or numbness in the heel, sometimes extending into the sole of the foot.

Preventive measures

A good way to relieve heel pain is to avoid activities that cause it. You can also try wearing supportive shoes or inserts. In some cases, it may be necessary to use an insole for the shoes. Other remedies for heel pain are contrast baths, alternating hot and cold water. Often, this type of treatment can be effective in treating inflammation in the area, but may not be appropriate for your case.

How to treat heel pain?

  • Rest and activity reduction: The first step is often to decrease activities that put pressure on the heel, especially high-impact ones such as running or jumping.
  • Cold compresses: Applying ice or cold compresses to the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes several times a day can help reduce inflammation and pain.
  • Stretching and exercises: Stretching exercises, particularly for the plantar fascia and Achilles tendon, can be very beneficial. These exercises improve flexibility and can reduce tension in the heel.
  • Proper footwear: Using shoes with good support, cushioning, and a proper fit is crucial. In some cases, orthotic insoles or arch supports may be recommended.
  • Anti-inflammatory medications: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, can help relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Physical therapies: In some cases, physical therapy may be recommended to strengthen the muscles of the foot and leg, as well as to improve foot mechanics and alignment.
  • Consult a professional: If heel pain is persistent or severe, it is important to consult a health professional, such as a podiatrist or orthopedist, for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Remember that the treatment of heel pain largely depends on its cause. Therefore, proper evaluation and a personalized approach are essential for effective treatment and successful recovery.

Does your heel hurt? At Clinique Podiatrique Duvernay you will always find the care you need to maintain the health of your feet. Visit us and make an appointment with us to relieve your heel pain.