Causes and Treatment of an Achilles Tendon Injury

Achilles tendon injuries are common for both athletes and occasional exercisers, presenting significant challenges due to the tendon's pivotal role in mobility. Often triggered by overuse, athletes may push their limits too quickly or neglect proper stretching before physical activity. Also, factors like wearing high heels or foot issues like flat feet can heighten the risk of an Achilles tendon injury. Symptoms typically include pain along the back of the foot and above the heel, and can be worsened by ankle stretching or toe-standing. Diagnosis involves a thorough physical examination by a podiatrist, who also may order imaging tests like an ultrasound or MRI scans to assess the extent of damage. Treatment options vary based on severity and may include prescribing anti-inflammatory medication or certain exercises for rehabilitation. In severe cases or complete tears, surgery may be necessary for tendon repair. If you have injured your Achilles tendon, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a full exam, diagnosis, and suggested treatment plan. 

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of InStride Family Foot Care. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Concord, Charlotte, and Salisbury, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about The Causes, Types, and Treatments of Achilles Tendon Injuries

Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Treatment for Stiffness in the Big Toe

Stiffness in the big toe, medically known as hallux rigidus, usually develops due to arthritis, especially in adults between 30 and 60 years old. This stiffness in the big toe is often found to be the result of past sports injuries. Symptoms can worsen over time, leading to persistent pain, difficulty in wearing shoes, and changes in the way you walk. Treatment options include non-surgical approaches, such as modifying footwear, adjusting activities, and using medications to manage pain and inflammation. In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary. One option is cheilectomy, where bone spurs are removed to improve joint movement. Another surgical option is arthrodesis, which involves fusing the joint to reduce pain. These procedures aim to alleviate symptoms and improve big toe function. Given the complexity of hallux rigidus, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for a thorough evaluation and the appropriate treatment recommendations. 

Toe pain can disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of InStride Family Foot Care. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Causes Toe Pain?

Most severe toe pain is caused due to a sports injury, trauma from dropping something heavy on the toe, or bumping into something rigid. Other problems can develop over time for various reasons.

Toe pain can be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Trauma
  • Sports injury
  • Wearing shoes that are too tight
  • Arthritis
  • Gout
  • Corns and calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Blisters
  • Ingrown toenails
  • Sprains
  • Fractures (broken bones)
  • Dislocations

When to See a Podiatrist

  • Severe pain
  • Persistent pain that lasts more than a week
  • Signs of infection
  • Continued swelling
  • Pain that prevents walking

Diagnosis

In many cases the cause of toe pain is obvious, but in others, a podiatrist may want to use more advanced methods to determine the problem. These can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatments for toe pain and injuries vary and may include shoe inserts, padding, taping, medicines, injections, and in some cases, surgery. If you believe that you have broken a toe, please see a podiatrist as soon as possible.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Concord, Charlotte, and Salisbury, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Exercises to Strengthen the Ankles

Strengthening your ankle ligaments is essential for preventing sprains and enhancing stability, especially if you are active in sports or physical activities. Simple ankle exercises include pointing and flexing your toes and performing heel raises while focusing on controlled movements. Other simple, but effective, ankle strengthening exercises include partial knee squats, either against a wall or with a chair for support, and incorporating stair climbing into your workout routine. These exercises help build strength and stability in your ankles, reducing the risk of sprains and enhancing overall mobility. However, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist before starting any ankle exercise regimen, particularly if you have existing ankle joint issues or are experiencing ankle pain. For personalized exercise recommendations and treatments to address your ankle instability or weakness, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries and build strength. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from InStride Family Foot Care. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Exercise for Your Feet

Exercise for your feet can help you gain strength, mobility and flexibility in your feet. They say that strengthening your feet can be just as rewarding as strengthening another part of the body. Your feet are very important, and we often forget about them in our daily tasks. But it is because of our feet that are we able to get going and do what we need to. For those of us fortunate enough to not have any foot problems, it is an important gesture to take care of them to ensure good health in the long run.

Some foot health exercises can include ankle pumps, tip-toeing, toe rises, lifting off the floor doing reps and sets, and flexing the toes. It is best to speak with Our doctors to determine an appropriate regimen for your needs. Everyone’s needs and bodies are different, and the activities required to maintain strength in the feet vary from individual to individual. 

Once you get into a routine of doing regular exercise, you may notice a difference in your feet and how strong they may become.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Concord, Charlotte, and Salisbury, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Exercise for Your Feet

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