Activities such as basketball, cheerleading, lacrosse, track and softball can cause common foot and heel pain in children. It is important that your kids never “play through the pain” in their feet.
Left untreated, a nagging heel pain can lead to difficulty in walking that may require complicated therapy or treatment. Over exercising, repeated trauma such as jumping, running or excessive weight or force on the Achilles tendon can also cause inflammation and pain.
Kids who have growth spurts can also have heel pain, starting at age 8 until around age 13 for girls and age 15 for boys. The pain is usually associated with the growth plate in the heel bone.
How can heel pain be prevented? A few precautionary measures:
- Use the correct shoe for the given sport, since different sports require various levels of support.
- Make sure that the child goes through the appropriate stretching and warm up before participating in the sport.
- If your child is overweight, help him or her to shed some pounds.
- Limit wearing cleated shoes to the time actually spent on the field. Cleated shoes do not provide adequate support and may cause increased pressure on the feet.
Dr. Laghaeian sees patients at The Everett Clinic Gunderson Building.