The heel pain associated with heel spurs and plantar fasciitis may not respond well to rest. If you walk after a night’s sleep, the pain may feel worse as the plantar fascia suddenly elongates, which stretches and pulls on the heel. The pain often decreases the more you walk. But you may feel a recurrence of pain after either prolonged rest or extensive walking.
If you have heel pain that persists for more than one month, consult a healthcare provider. He or she may recommend conservative treatments such as:
- Shoe recommendations
- Taping or strapping to rest stressed muscles and tendons
- Shoe inserts or orthotic devices
- Physical therapy
- Night splints
Heel pain may respond to treatment with over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen. In many cases, a functional orthotic device can correct the causes of heel and arch pain such as biomechanical imbalances. In some cases, injection with a corticosteroid may be done to relieve inflammation in the area.
Surgery for Heel Spurs
More than 90% of people heal with nonsurgical treatments. If conservative treatment fails to treat symptoms of heel spurs after a period of 9 to 12 months, surgery may be necessary to relieve pain and restore mobility. Surgical techniques include: release of plantar fascia and/or removal of the spur.