Learning more about what a heel spur is and how a podiatrist can help you is smart. A podiatrist is a health care professional who has decided to focus their attentions on preventing, diagnosing and treating problems taking place in the feet, ankle and lower legs. Podiatrists are doctors who can prescribe medication as well as perform surgery in order to help patients get better. Find out how podiatrists treat heel spurs below.
What is a heel spur?
A podiatrist can answer all the heel spur questions a patient might have, as podiatrists are specifically trained in how to deal with a wide variety of foot problems. According to WebMD, a heel spur is a calcium deposit causing a bony protrusion on the underside of the heel bone. While some heel spurs are painless, others can cause a great deal of heel pain. A buildup of calcium deposit can be due to a foot-related strain, when the membrane covering the heel bone is constantly being torn and an overstretching of the plantar fascia. The list below includes some of the more common treatment options available nowadays to address heel spurs.
Those suffering from heel spurs can use ice packs and cold compresses to help reduce any inflammation, which in turn will help to reduce any discomfort or pain. An ice pack needs to be wrapped in a cloth so that the ice is not directly next to the skin. A cold compress can also be used to offer relief. Cold therapy can be utilized up to four times a day at 10 to 15-minute intervals.
Physical therapy aka stretching exercises
Physical therapy is a common treatment for heel spurs and tends to include special stretching exercises. The stretching helps to strengthen the area and keep it as flexible as possible. When done right, patients will experience less pain and can also expect to experience fewer occurrences of heel spurs in the future.
Taking medications, injection therapy
Medications that can help those who are suffering from a heel spur include anti-inflammatory medications, as well as over-the-counter pain relievers. Anti-inflammatory medications will help to reduce any swelling. Over-the-counter pain relievers will help to reduce any discomfort or pain the patient is feeling. Injections therapy involves using corticosteroid injections. These do not cure the spur but do help to reduce swelling and minimize any pain.
Think you have heel spurs?
If you think you have a heel spur, a podiatrist appointment is necessary. It is easier to treat foot problems in their earlier stages. Contact your podiatrist now to schedule an appointment at a time that is convenient for you. You do not have to continue suffering and instead, it is time for you to learn which of the many treatment options available will work for you. If there are multiple treatment options available, you can choose the one that makes more sense to you.
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