The heels of the legs are a kind of shock absorbers that protect the entire bone tissue of the lower extremities, as well as the muscular-ligamentous apparatus. Due to their structure, they withstand enormous loads, as well as the pressure of body weight when walking and running. The heel bone is the largest of the bones of the foot, it is soft, spongy, surrounded by a fatty layer and passes through itself blood vessels and nerves, including those leading to other parts of the foot. The Achilles (calcaneal) tendon departs from the calcaneus, connecting it with the calf muscle and providing mobility to the ankle joint.
Why can the heels of the feet hurt?
The sensation of pain in the heels in women is most often caused by excessive loads on the legs, as well as wearing unsuitable shoes (with an unsuitable block, instep, insole, etc.), shoes with high heels. This is especially familiar to people who, due to their professional activities, are forced to walk a lot or stand for a long time. Those who have flat feet are most susceptible to heel pain. As a rule, these factors can explain why the heels of the legs hurt when walking and at the end of the working day.
Also, pain can be explained by trauma to the heel. It can be either a bruise, or a crack or fracture of the calcaneus, a rupture or stretching of the tendon. The injury is most often associated with an unsuccessful landing after a jump, walking on nerve surfaces, and playing various sports. But if the pain does not go away after rest, and traumatic factors are excluded, it is not so easy to understand why the heel on the right or left leg hurts and how to treat it. To do this, you should contact a specialist.
Consider the most common diseases that can affect the heel and cause pain:
- Plantar fasciitis (“heel spur”) – inflammation of the fascia – a flat ligament that connects the heel bone to the bases of the fingers. This is a common reason why the heels of the feet hurt in the morning. The disease is caused by regular exorbitant sprains and loads that cause microdamage to the ligament.
- Calcaneal tendonitis – a degenerative-inflammatory process affecting the ligament tissue, resulting from excessive loads or associated with a decrease in the elasticity of the connective tissue.
- Osteochondropathy of the calcaneal tuber – necrosis of the calcaneal tuber. It is assumed that the pathology is associated with vascular and metabolic disorders.
- Achilles bursitis – acute inflammation of the periarticular sac and the area adjacent to it. The disease is provoked by both physical exertion and infections.
- Tarsal syndrome – neuropathy, in which there is compression of the tibial nerve at the level of the ankle joint.
- Compression neuropathy of the plantar nerves – compression of the nerves of the sole leading to the toes, often caused by wearing tight shoes with high heels.
Also, heel pain can be associated with various systemic diseases that lead to damage to the bones and joints of the feet:
Treatment for heel pain
Without finding out why the heels of the legs hurt, you should not independently carry out treatment, including folk remedies. Incorrectly selected therapy can not only not give positive results, but also lead to the progression of the underlying disease that provokes pain. As a rule, for the treatment of most pathologies that cause this symptom, medical methods of treatment are used, which are combined with physiotherapy, massage, therapeutic exercises, wearing orthopedic shoes.