We have seen a number of children lately presenting with heel pain. In fact, heel pain is the most common problem we treat in the many children we see in our Seattle foot clinic.
Most of the heel pain in these kids is due to a problem known as “Sever’s disease” or “Calcaneal Apophysitis“. This is an inflammation of the growth plate of the heel bone. The growth plate is injured due to extreme “tugging” forces from tendons and ligaments attaching into the heel bone.
Soccer is the sport that is most likely going to cause damage to the growth plate of the heel.
Our goal for treatment is to eliminate your child’s pain and then get them back to the activities they enjoy. We do this by providing support that eliminates the forces that are causing the pain. We may use heel lifts, arch supports, exercises and anti-inflammatory treatments. It all depends on what type of foot your child has and the extent of their pain. Our goals are to eliminate the pain and get your child back to activity in the most effective and least expensive way possible.
This is a problem that should be evaluated by a podiatrist familiar with treating pediatric patients. If you are in the Seattle or Belleuve, WA areas then make an appointment to see us in our Seattle office.
If you are not in Seattle and there is no pediatric foot specialist in your area, then following these instructions until you can see a children’s foot doctor:
- Ice the painful area 3 times per day for 10 minutes
- Wear stable shoes all the time – even in the house (get our list of recommended shoes here)
- Have your child wear a very stable arch support. For younger kids (toddler and youth sizes) we recommend the Arch Angels.
- For older kids we recommend the Powerstep Medical Grade Orthotic 3/4 length. We like this one because it offers excellent control for a prefabricated orthotic, but doesn’t take up room in the toebox of soccer cleats.