Achilles Tendonitis: Symptoms, Causes, and Podiatry Treatments | Achilles Tendinitis Heel Pain Clinic

Achilles Tendonitis: Symptoms, Causes, and Podiatry Treatments | Achilles Tendinitis Heel Pain

Achilles Tendonitis: Symptoms, Causes, Risks and Podiatry Treatments

Achilles tendinitis, a condition characterised by pain, swelling, and stiffness at the back of the heel, particularly after periods of inactivity or physical exertion, poses significant challenges for those affected.

Often rooted in causes such as improper footwear, muscle imbalances, and limited flexibility, this condition necessitates timely and precise treatment intervention.

Podiatrists offer a range of treatments, from custom orthotics and shockwave therapy to dry needling and targeted exercises, each tailored to the individual’s specific needs.

Understanding the intricacies of Achilles tendinitis is essential for effective management and prevention of further complications.

There are three types of Achilles injuries - Tendonsis (a degenerative condition, typically without inflammation), Tendonitis (inflammation and minor tear damage to the Achilles tendon), and a rupture where the tendon breaks.

Symptoms of Achilles Tendon Pain

Achilles tendinitis typically presents with pain and tenderness localised at the back of the heel. Swelling of the Achilles tendon, along with warmth and redness in the area, often marks this condition. Other common symptoms include:

Tendon Pain

Patients frequently report experiencing significant Achilles tendon pain, especially during physical activities such as running or walking, which can severely limit their mobility and independence.

Morning Stiffness

Morning stiffness is another common symptom, with patients often noticing increased discomfort and rigidity upon waking, making the first steps of the day particularly challenging. This stiffness tends to subside with mild activity, only to return with more intense exertion.

Noticable Lump

Additionally, a noticeable lump or nodule may develop along the tendon, further contributing to walking difficulty and exacerbating the pain.

Walking Difficulties

Clinical evaluation reveals that individuals with Achilles tendonitis commonly face walking difficulties due to pain and swelling, which can alter gait and contribute to secondary issues such as muscle imbalances.

To manage these symptoms effectively, early diagnosis and a patient-focused treatment approach are essential. This may include interventions aimed at reducing inflammation, improving tendon flexibility, and restoring normal function to support the patient’s desire for an active lifestyle.

Achilles Tendinitis Common Causes

Achilles tendinitis is primarily caused by overuse of the Achilles tendon during repetitive high-impact activities such as running and jumping. The following factors contribute to the excessive strain experienced by the Achilles tendon, potentially leading to inflammation and even a ruptured Achilles tendon if not addressed:

Recognising these common causes is vital for individuals aiming to maintain an active lifestyle while minimising the risk of Achilles tendinitis and associated complications.

Achilles Tendinopathy Risk Factors

There are several common risk factors to experiencing Achilles Tendinitis – some people are exposed to more than one of the following risk factors, that are managable or avoidable.  Being aware of the risks empowers you to take action to avoid the pain, injuries and impacts to your daily activities that Achilles Tedonitis brings with it:

High Impact Sports

Engaging in high-impact sports such as running and basketball significantly increases the risk of developing Achilles tendinitis. These activities impose repetitive stress on the Achilles tendon, leading to microtears and inflammation.

Tight Calf Muscles

Engaging in high-impact sports such as running and basketball significantly increases the risk of developing Achilles tendonitis. These activities impose repetitive stress on the Achilles tendon, leading to microtears and inflammation.

Poor Footwear

Footwear choice plays a crucial role in either mitigating or exacerbating the risk. Shoes that lack adequate arch support or cushioning can contribute to undue stress on the Achilles tendon, increasing susceptibility to injury.

Training Intensity

Additionally, sudden increases in training intensity or duration without proper conditioning can overload the tendon, leading to the onset of tendonitis.

Demographics

Demographic factors also influence risk. Men over the age of 30 are more prone to developing Achilles tendonitis, possibly due to age-related degenerative changes in the tendon.

Chronic Health Conditions

Chronic health conditions such as obesity and diabetes further raise the risk, as they can impair tendon health and healing capacity.

Understanding these risk factors empowers individuals to make informed decisions about their physical activities and lifestyle choices, thereby reducing the likelihood of developing Achilles tendinitis injuries and preserving their freedom to engage in desired sports and activities.

Do you have tendon pain when you walk? Is there a noticable lump or swelling? You may have Achilles Tendinitis - a very common and readily treatable condition. Get the help you need today at Bellevue Podiatry.

Achilles Health Podiatry Treatment

Podiatry treatments for Achilles tendonitis encompass a multidisciplinary treatment approach designed to alleviate pain, reduce inflammation, and restore full function to the affected tendon. Podiatrists often employ evidence-based interventions tailored to each patient’s specific condition.

Key health treatments may include:

These treatments are patient-focused, aiming to enable individuals to regain freedom of movement efficiently and effectively.

Preventive Health Measures

Implementing preventive measures is essential to reducing the risk of Achilles tendonitis and maintaining peak tendon health and avoiding injuries:

These evidence-based treatment strategies empower individuals to maintain an active lifestyle while safeguarding against Achilles tendinitis, ensuring sustained freedom of movement and peak tendon functionality.

Conclusion

Achilles tendinitis, akin to a persistent thorn in one’s heel, arises mainly from overuse, improper biomechanics, and inadequate footwear.

Effective management through podiatry treatments, including custom orthotic therapy, shockwave therapy, targeted exercises, and foot mobilisation techniques, is vital for alleviating symptoms and promoting recovery.

An emphasis on preventive measures, such as appropriate footwear and biomechanical correction, is necessary to reduce the risk of recurrence and ensure long-term tendon health.

You don’t need to put up with Achilles Tendonitis any longer.  Our team of experienced Podiatrists have the education and experience to get you moving pain free again.  Take control today by booking in online or call us today on (03) 8104 9270 to get this issue sorted once and for all.

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