Football practice is in full swing by now. Your little athletes are getting more than their fair share of exercise out there on the field from running, jumping, and throwing the ball around. Just make sure they are staying pain free. Active children are more likely than non-active ones to suffer from Sever’s disease, a condition that affects adolescents and causes heel pain.
Sever’s disease creates inflammation in the growth plate located in the heel. This area, called the epiphyseal plate, is where cartilage is formed and eventually turns into bone cells. It is most active during adolescence when we grow at a very rapid pace. Sometimes the heel bone can grow more quickly than the surrounding muscles and tendons, which causes the muscles to become overstretched. This, in turn, creates more pressure on the growth plate. The result is pain in the heel area where the growth plate is located.
Certain people are at a higher risk of developing Sever’s disease than others. The more constant pressure you put on your feet the greater your chances increase. This means that active children, especially those who participate in sports with a lot of running or jumping, are at more of a risk. However, this isn’t the only contributing factor. Children who are obese or overweight, have high arches, or overpronate when they walk are also more likely to suffer from Sever’s disease.
The good news is that it’s very treatable, and once your child is finished growing the pain will fade with no lasting damage. The bad news is that this often means giving up sports while recovery takes place. Your child can cross-train with low-impact activities (swimming, cycling, etc.) while they heal. When they are able to put their full weight on their feet without pain they may return to their sport.
We know you don’t want to see your child suffering from foot pain, so call Dr. Peyman Elison and Dr. Viedra Elison today at (623) 584-5556 to schedule an appointment with us at Fixing Feet Institute in Surprise, AZ.