Heel pain in children commonly affect to young athletes with ages between 9 and 14. Expert said that young male athletes are more prone to this heel pain. Yes, it could happen to female young athletes but it rarer compared to male. This heel pain has been reported to appear in many young soccer players once the pain is going bad, it could very hurt and affect to child activity limitation.
One thing we should know that this pain condition in children is totally different to hell pain that occur on adults that commonly start to develop when an inflammation of plantar fascia, a ligament that located on the bottom of the arch. This condition is common in those with high arches, flat feet, and those who deal with ladder frequently.
What causes heel pain in children?
Severe’s disease is claimed as the main culprit of this heel pain in children. The disease starts to develop when an inflammation occurs to the growth plate on the back of the heel. Severe’s disease makes tendons and muscles in affected area become tight and the heel area is less flexible. The pain start to appear once direct pressure from activities hit the back of the heel and cause a tiny fractures that cause extreme pain. Besides young athletes, children with over weight are also has greater risk for developing this condition.
How to treat this heel pain?
Treatments for the condition are focused in pain management and how to minimize the pain causes. Basically there is no cure for this heel pain in children, and the pain will go over the time. What parent can do to minimize the effect of the pain is by doing these steps:
1. Reduce the amount of sporting activities. There is no need to stop the activities at all, just cut some extreme activities until the signs and symptoms improve.
2. Use an ice pack to cooling down the heel after several hour activities. Put the ice pack for at least 20 minutes. Do this step for 2-3 times a day.
3. Stay away from going barefoot.
4. A soft cushioning heel raise can reduce the spasm of calf muscles and increase the sock absorption. This technique makes the growth plate is not knocked much.
5. Do a simple calf muscle stretching.
If your children experience this type of heel pain and it won’t go for couple days, it better to talk with the expert to make sure the cause and to get proper treatment. Drug base treatments such as anti-inflammatory or pain killer may be prescribed by the doctor if needed.
After the treatment and the pain start to decrease, maintain the activities are important to stay away from heel pain in children. Some simple prevention such as cut the sporting activities, using good supportive shoe that can absorb the sock on heel region are important to prevent the pain to come again.