7 top heel bursitis treatments

Experiencing foot pain caused by heel bursitis? Bursitis can be an uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating condition. Caused by inflammation of fluid-filled sacs between the joints, bursitis is a common condition. The symptoms of bursitis include chronic pain and restricted mobility. Fortunately, there are several effective treatments available. Learning about the top treatments for heel bursitis can help empower you to find lasting relief as soon as possible.

Top treatments for heel bursitis


  • Rest — Bursitis is a kind of inflammation. The bursae, which are small sacs that cushion your joints, can become inflamed through injury or overuse. To alleviate the symptoms of bursitis, allowing your body to recover is important. This makes getting adequate rest a good first step in treating bursitis. Try to avoid activities that might make your pain worse, such as running or going on long walks.

  • Elevation — Want to make your rest more effective? Try elevating your leg. When you keep the affected foot above heart level, it can help reduce swelling and inflammation. This is because elevation encourages excess fluid to circulate through the rest of the body rather than gathering in the foot. This simple strategy can be used when you are resting in a sitting or lying position.

  • Targeted exercises — Physical therapy exercises can be highly beneficial for heel bursitis. If your range of motion is limited by your condition, PT exercises can help make you more flexible. Further, building strength in your foot through targeted exercise can improve your foot stability and posture. This can help address the underlying causes of your heel bursitis. Reducing tension through exercise can also help reduce inflammation. With physical therapy, you can address your foot pain now and in the future. Your physical therapist can educate you on proper body mechanics to help prevent future flare-ups.

  • Proper footwear — A leading cause of bursitis is wearing shoes that do not provide adequate support. Some people wear shoes that are too tight, which can restrict blood flow and put excess pressure on the heel. Others might wear shoes that are the right size, but don’t offer the right arch support. If you are experiencing foot pain caused by bursitis, wearing more supportive shoes can help alleviate your symptoms. Make sure your footwear has sufficient cushioning and support that distributes your body weight evenly. With the right shoes, you can address your pain and walk comfortably.

  • Electrical stimulation — Electrical stimulation is a physical therapy modality designed to offer a range of benefits. The treatment targets the affected area with electrical waves meant to trigger healing processes. This can help you recover faster. Electrical stimulation can relax muscles and reduce inflammation as well, offering an immediate improvement to your condition. If you want lasting relief from the pain and stiffness you might be experiencing due to heel bursitis, electrical stimulation can be an effective option.

  • Manual therapy — The aim of physical therapy is to offer a holistic approach to wellness. This approach is inclusive of many different techniques that can offer relief through their specialized strategies. One of the most popular physical therapy techniques is manual therapy. With manual therapy, a physical therapist can use their hands to move affected tissue and boost circulation. This can help loosen tense areas and sometimes provides immediate pain relief. The types of manual therapy commonly practiced include assisted stretching and soft tissue manipulation. When a patient is experiencing pain caused by inflammation, manual therapy is often recommended. By promoting circulation, a physical therapist can use a hands-on approach to reduce inflammation and swelling. This makes manual therapy an ideal treatment option for heel bursitis.

  • Stretches — Stretching is an important activity to incorporate into your daily schedule. When one area of your body such as the heel requires special attention, targeted stretches can be helpful. By stretching the Achilles tendon and nearby muscles, you can help reduce the symptoms of your heel bursitis. A physical therapist can recommend certain stretches designed to work alongside the other parts of your personalized treatment plan. Many PT stretches can be easily performed at home between sessions, meaning your recovery can continue at a steady pace.

Lattimore Physical Therapy can help treat your heel bursitis

Are you having a persistent pain in your heel caused by bursitis? You can find relief with our one-on-one help at Lattimore Physical Therapy. With a range of bursitis treatments including tailored exercises and manual therapy, we are well equipped to guide you through your recovery journey. Our team looks forward to each session and we strive to ensure that our patients do as well. 

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

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