What Causes Achilles Tendinitis?
Achilles tendinitis is typically caused by overuse or a sudden increase in activity (ex: walking, running or jumping). Tightness and lack of flexibility in the calf muscle could also lead to tendinitis. Tendinitis caused by overuse is most common in younger individuals, and in athletes involved in sports requiring excessive jumping, such as basketball.
Signs and Symptoms
Typical signs and symptoms of Achilles tendinitis include pain in the heel when walking, running, or jumping. The tendon is usually painful with activity and tender to touch; visual swelling and redness may be present.
General guidelines include reducing or modifying activity in order to begin the process of healing. Activities that aggravate symptoms should be avoided. Increasing flexibility is an important step in the rehabilitation of the tendon and calf muscles with the use of heat, massage and regular stretching. Strengthening exercises, taping techniques, the use of heel lifts and recommended changes in footwear may be suggested. RICE (rest, ice, compress and elevate) to aid in the management of inflammation and soreness.
Your physical therapist will give you specific guidelines for your individual needs.