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Why Does My Heel Hurt When I Get Out of Bed in the Morning?

Why Does My Heel Hurt When I Get Out of Bed in the Morning?

Do you experience sharp pain shooting up from your heel in the morning? You may have plantar fasciitis. 

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that affects around one in 10 people. It occurs when a thick band of tissue that connects your heel to your toes, called the plantar fascia, becomes inflamed, injured, or irritated. 

The result is stabbing pain in the heel when taking your first few steps in the morning or after long rest periods. 

But why does plantar fasciitis rear its ugly head after you’ve given your feet such a long break? 

Dr. Maurice Aiken and our Bay Breeze Foot & Ankle Specialists team are here to explain it all. Check out these contributing factors to morning-time heel pain. 

The long rest

Believe it or not, kicking up your feet for a long snooze can exacerbate plantar fasciitis. While you sleep, the plantar fascia naturally tightens and shortens. When you stand up, the fascia stretches to accommodate your body weight, which stresses your already damaged feet. 

Changes in blood flow

Your feet also experience a significant decrease in blood flow overnight. The sudden rush of blood back into your feet with your first steps stimulates inflammation and triggers pain. 

Leg stiffness 

Your feet aren’t the only parts to tense up overnight — your legs do, too. And when your legs are stiff, your first steps stretch those muscles and your feet, contributing to your heel pain. 

What to do about your heel pain

No one needs another reason to dread their morning routine. So, if you’re struggling with heel pain in the morning, make an appointment with our board-certified podiatrist. 

We review your medical history, perform physical exams, and even order diagnostic imaging tests if we need to, all to uncover the extent of your plantar fasciitis. 

From here, we create a customized treatment to help you step away from heel pain for good. Depending on your needs, we may recommend one or more of the following:

We’re proud to offer noninvasive and even all-natural options to our patients with other health and wellness goals. However, surgery may be necessary to repair the damage in cases of severe plantar fasciitis. 

What else you can do about plantar fasciitis

Nothing beats our advanced treatments, but we understand that you want to take your feet into your own hands. We recommend doing anything and everything to support your feet at all hours of the day and night. 

During the day, that means wearing comfortable, supportive shoes; at night, that means wearing a night splint to keep your feet in the optimal position for less stiffness and strain.  

You can also try:

Maintaining a healthy weight and doing low-impact exercises are other great ways to keep your feet and their supportive tissues in perfect health. 

If you have more questions about heel pain and would like to get started with treatment, don’t hesitate to call or click to schedule an appointment with Dr. Aiken at our Dunedin, Florida, office today.

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