Your Achilles tendon – the longest tendon in your body – connects your calf muscles to your heel bones. One incorrect step or landing though, and you can quickly injure it. When this happens, the expert podiatry team at The Foot Doctors of Santa Cruz County can help. They offer several Achilles tendon treatments at their Watsonville and Santa Cruz, California, offices, so you can heal and come back stronger to prevent future injuries. Schedule your exam by requesting an appointment online or by calling your most convenient location.
Achilles Tendon Q & A
What causes Achilles tendinitis?
Achilles tendinitis stems from repetitive motions or intense strain on the tendon. Since your Achilles tendon is responsible allowing walking, running, or jumping motions, it’s relatively easy to stress or overuse it. You have a higher chance of developing an Achilles tendon injury — including a tear or rupture — if you:
- Run long distances
- Are older or are male
- Have flat arches
- Participate in jumping sports or activities that require sudden stops, like basketball or tennis
Medical experts also find that men and women who have chronic inflammatory conditions, such as psoriasis, also have a greater risk of Achilles tendinitis. Sometimes, you might just be prone to injury because of the use of certain types of antibiotics, too.
How do I know if I have Achilles tendinitis?
The symptoms you experience from Achilles tendinitis depend on the severity of your injury. Initially, you may feel mild aching along the back of your lower leg, right above your heel, especially after running or playing sports.
As your Achilles tendon injury worsens, it’s common to start noticing some tenderness or stiffness that’s usually worse in the morning or right after waking. You might also find that this discomfort occurs after long periods of sitting. If left untreated, your Achilles tendon issues can continue to worsen.
What is the treatment for an Achilles tendon injury?
Treating an Achilles tendon injury includes a combination of several therapies that are designed to reduce pain and inflammation, build up strength, and prevent future injury. Your individual Achilles tendon injury care plan at The Foot Doctors of Santa Cruz County can include:
- Custom orthotics or wedge inserts
- Stabilization through bracing
- Physical therapy and localized stretching
- Anti-inflammatory medications
In most cases, Achilles tendinitis improves within a few months of trying these conservative therapies. If your condition is worsening or if you’re just not getting relief, your dedicated podiatrist could suggest surgery. Achilles tendon surgery involves repairing any tears or ruptures in the injured tendon.
Book your Achilles tendon injury evaluation at The Foot Doctors of Santa Cruz County today. Either click on the online booking feature or call your closest clinic.