Our New York Podiatrists Answer Frequently Asked Questions About Achilles Tendinitis
You feel pain in your heel and are wondering if it is Achilles tendonitis. The next question is - who can treat it?
What Is Achilles Tendinopathy?
This is a condition where the collagen of your tendon becomes degenerated and damaged. This happens when you have chronic tendonitis and your doctor may also call this Achilles tendinosis, where you will feel burning pain around your Achilles tendon, which joins your heel bone to your calf muscles. You will see a limited range of motion and a lot less flexibility.
What Causes Pain In The Calcaneal Tendon?
If you hear your doctor use this term, they are also referring to the Achilles tendon. Another interesting thing about this is that it is the thickest tendon in your entire body. You likely get this due to a series of small injuries to the area that build up. Then those injuries don’t heal and keep accumulating. People who have a certain type of arthritis may be prone to having this happen to them.
There are a variety of causes, including
- Overusing the tendon, like running too much
- Not wearing the right footwear when you are training, which can stress your feet
- Not using the right technique when you are exercising or training
- Changing the intensity of your exercise program much too rapidly
- Running or training on a surface that is too hard or is sloped
Can Stretches & Exercises Make Achilles Tendonitis Worse?
You might think that you need to stretch to prevent injury - and that is true to a point. There are some that can worsen if you incorporate stretching… and Achilles tendonitis is one of those. That is because the Achilles tendon is compressed around the edge of the heel. Stretching causes the point of irritation to get even MORE compressed, which will make the pain worse.
What Is The Fastest Way To Treat Achilles Tendon Pain?
It may feel like the slowest way to you, especially if you are extremely active, but you need to lay down and rest for a good amount of time. You might have to curtail your physical activities and possibly replace some of them with much less strenuous ones like yoga. If you are a runner, you might change that for a much lower-impact activity like swimming.
How Can I Protect My Achilles Tendon?
Look at your shoes and make sure that they fit well and that they fit well for whatever activity you are doing. Having the proper support can make a big difference in terms of protecting your Achilles tendon. Be sure to warm up so that your muscles and tendons are not cold. As far as stretches go, there are some that you can do, but you should talk to a professional before doing that, since, as mentioned before, some can exacerbate the problem. That little bit of preparation can make a very big difference.
Of course, the last thing that you want to have happened is for your Achilles tendon to rupture. That can set you back for a good amount of time. The best thing you can do is rest and ice your heel when it hurts and monitor your exercise program so that you can scale it accordingly.
To answer the initial question, yes, a podiatrist can treat Achilles tendonitis. An experienced podiatrist will examine your foot and diagnose the problem. They may give you heel lifts to add support. You might have to limit walking barefoot as much as possible, and low-heel shoes should also be avoided. The podiatrist may suggest over-the-counter medications that are anti-inflammatory, and possibly give you bandages to use.
Having Achilles tendonitis can be very annoying given how much we walk around on our feet and having it bother you with every step can remind you of what you used to take for granted. By paying attention to your body, you can greatly reduce the risks of having it happen to you - though if it does, you can also be sure that you can be back on the road to recovery quickly.
Seek Assistance From Professional Podiatrists In Levittown, NY
If you are having problems with Achilles tendonitis, you should seek assistance from professional podiatrists in Levittown, NY. Dr. John J Hickey of Levittown Podiatry will use his expertise to help you get you back up and properly moving around. Give him a call today to make an appointment - 516-735-4545.
Phone: (516) 735-4545