Achilles tendonitis is a problem of inflammation and irritation of the big tendon at the back of your ankle. It's a very common injury among recreational athletes. When you overuse the Achilles tendon, it may cause inflammation and lead to swelling and pain. Your Achilles tendon is a huge band of tissue connecting muscles at the back of your lower leg to your heel bone. It is also known as the heel cord and is useful when you walk, jump, push up on toes, or run.
What Causes Achilles Tendonitis?
Achilles tendonitis is caused by intense or repetitive strain on your tendon. Several other factors may lead to an Achilles tendonitis problem, including:
- Intense stair climbing or hill running
- A sudden increase in speed or distance during your running routine
- Sports such as tennis or basketball that require sudden starts, stops, or jumps
- Failure to warm up before exercising
- Lack of flexibility in your calf muscles
- Running on hard or uneven surfaces
- Wearing inappropriate or worn out shoes for physical activities
- Traumatic injury in the tendon
Achilles tendonitis has various common symptoms, including:
- Morning pain and stiffness in the Achilles tendon
- Pain at the back of your heel or tendon that gets worse with activity
- Sharp pain the day after exercising
- Thickening of your tendon
- Swelling that worsens with activity throughout the day
- Bone Spurs pushing into shoes
- Weakness lifting yourself up on toes
Achilles Tendonitis Treatment
To find out if you have tendonitis, it's best to have your condition checked by a doctor. Self-diagnosis with severe injuries is not a wise thing to do. In order for your condition to get better, you need to know exactly what is wrong with you, so you can receive the right treatment.
Some of the most common treatments for Achilles tendonitis are:
- You can place some ice on the area that hurts most in the Achilles tendon area throughout the day, combined with rest and elevation when you are sitting or lying down
- Switching to low impact exercises like swimming and biking can provide rest to the Achilles tendon and reduce the pain
- Calf stretch exercises can make calf muscles stronger and lessen the stress on your Achilles tendon
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines like naproxen and ibuprofen can reduce the swelling and pain, do not use for more than a few days
- Physical therapy can also be helpful in treating the problem
- Surgery might be required in extreme cases where the pain has lasted for more than six months, several alternatives are very successful, such as Extracopreal shockwave therapy, platlet rich plasma, or amniotic membrane/ fluid injections
If you have Achilles tendonitis, you may have to try various treatment options before you get relief from the pain. But make sure to report the problem to a doctor before commencing treatment. Talus InMotion Foot & Ankle today to set up a consultation.