Why Do You Have Heel Pain In The Morning When You Get Out Of Bed?

March 17, 2022 • By Patricia Johnson
The estimated reading time is 10 minutes
heel pain in the morning

Do you feel a stabbing pain in your heels every time you get out of bed in the morning? Well, if your answer is yes, know that this type of pain can be caused by various conditions.

Having sore heels as soon as you make the first steps when you get out of bed can be really uncomfortable and frustrating. Even easy tasks, such as going for a walk or playing with your children, can become more difficult. And if you’re wondering why you often have sore heels in the morning or how this pain can be treated, bear with us since in this article, we’ll explain the possible causes of heel pain and what you can do to alleviate the pain. So, without further ado, let’s dive right into it:

5 Causes Of Heel Pain

1. Achilles Tendinitis

When the Achilles tendon, which is a group of tissues connecting the calf muscles to the bone in the heel, gets inflamed, this condition is known as Achilles tendinitis. Common symptoms of this condition are feeling pain and stiffness in the heel. Symptoms can be more severe when getting out of bed in the morning since there may be restricted blood flow to this area while resting.

One characteristic thing about Achilles tendinitis is that if you have this condition, you’re more likely to feel discomfort and tenderness during the day, not just in the morning.

2. Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a condition which occurs when the ligament, known as plantar fascia, stretching from your toes to your heel gets swollen and inflamed. When this happens, you feel a sharp pain or tenderness in your foot or heel. Symptoms of plantar fasciitis may be more intense after you wake up in the morning since there’s not enough blood supply to your foot when you are resting.(1).

One question that many people commonly ask is:

How Did I Get Plantar Fasciitis?

Well, when you regularly put too much weight on your heel for a longer period of time without resting it or giving it a chance to recover, this results in overuse. Certain habits and activities can cause this overuse. Let’s take a look at the most common ones:

  • Wearing uncomfortable shoes. Wearing bad, unsupportive shoes, particularly on hard surfaces, can easily cause plantar fasciitis. On the other hand, wearing comfortable shoes with good support helps the plantar fascia during the day, whether you’re standing on your feet, walking, or running.
  • Hard jobs. If your work requires standing on your feet for eight or more hours a day, then you know what we are referring to. The pain caused by plantar fasciitis is even worse when the surface under your feet is hard and flat.
  • Hobbies that involve jumping and running. Of course, you’re not expected to quit playing football, basketball, or tennis or running, but it’s a fact that these activities put a lot of pressure on your heels. You can stay active, but also make sure you wear good, comfortable shoes and train wisely without stressing out your feet too much.
  • Achilles tightness , being overweight or obese, and having a flat foot are also considered as common causes of plantar fasciitis as they can cause this condition by irritating the plantar fascia and causing it to get inflamed.

In addition, those who compete in athletics commonly suffer from plantar fasciitis as a big amount of pressure is put on their heels and feet. To ease heel pain, athletes can change their trainers every 500 miles or go swimming and cycling several times a week.

If you have this condition, to alleviate pain, try walking a couple of minutes when you get out of bed so as to warm up the site where you feel the pain.

3. Stress Fracture

Increased athletic activities, doing physical exercises or activities improperly as well as overuse can all result in a stress fracture. The pain can develop during several days, even weeks, and you may have difficulty walking.

4. Hypothyroidism

When hormones and chemicals in your body are disrupted, this can cause your ankles, heels, and feet to become swollen and inflamed. This can also hurt the tibial nerve.

If you have heel pain when you get out of bed as well as some symptoms of hypothyroidism, we advise you to get your thyroid checked by your physician.

5. Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

Those suffering from this condition are more likely to feel pain in the heel when they get out of bed. The reason for this is that rheumatoid arthritis causes the joints and the tissues surrounding them to become inflamed, and it’s exactly this inflammation which makes people diagnosed with RA more susceptible to plantar fasciitis.

To prevent plantar fasciitis, people suffering from RA should do regular physical exercises, but with caution, so as not to worsen the pain or inflammation.

Why Do Your Heels Hurt When You Get Out Of Bed?

If plantar fasciitis is the cause of your feet pain, you first need to understand the function of the ligament plantar fascia. Plantar fascia plays an important and demanding role in distributing your steps’ weight over wide area and as long as possible and providing your arch with support. Since it’s quite flexible and stores energy when it bears your steps’ weight, this prevents the weight and pressure from damaging bones and muscles in your foot.

However, if you put too much weight or pressure on or overstretch your plantar fascia without enabling it to recover on its own, it begins to break down and this causes inflammation or pain. The pain is most commonly felt under the heel.

You might be wondering why a hurt and damaged plantar fascia should only hurt when you get out of bed. Well, the reason is actually pretty simple: When you are resting or sleeping, the damaged plantar fascia moderately contracts. However, once it starts to bear weight, the weight and pressure come like a shock to it. So, the plantar fascia needs to stretch again and this can hurt a lot. To get rid of pain and discomfort, wait for a couple of minutes and then continue moving.

Is Plantar Fasciitis Serious?

Feeling a stabbing pain in the feet in the morning is torturous and frustrating enough. The pain gradually alleviates as you walk around, but it’s wrong to leave it untreated. The longer you allow it to bother you, the more difficult it is to get rid of it completely. If you leave it untreated for a longer period of time, it can lead to chronic pain and prevent you from staying physically active and performing everyday activities.

How Do You Fix Heel Pain In The Morning?

Mild and moderate pain in your heels can be effectively treated at home in the following ways:

1. Massage your feet.

Gently massage your foot with your hand by applying mild pressure on the whole area of the foot. You can also roll the bottom of your foot on a tennis ball or foam roller. This activity eases tension in your feet and stimulates the flow of your blood

2. Rest your feet.

Lie in bed and elevate your feet a bit. Wait a few minutes and then get up. The pain will alleviate a bit.

3. Apply ice on your heel.

Wrap a pack of ice cubes or a bottle of frozen water in a towel and hold it over your feet for around 15 minutes. You can do this a couple of times a day.

4. Draw air letters with your big toe.

This is a good way to activate the muscles in the sore foot.

5. Stretch

  • Plantar fascia stretch.
  1. Sit on a chair or on your bed and cross your sore foot over the other knee.
  2. Slowly pull the toes towards the shin with the hand which is on the same  side as the sore foot.
  3. Hold the toes for 10 seconds and then release them.
  4. Repeat the same process with the other foot if it is sore too.
  • Towel stretches.

-Roll a towel and put it under your foot and pull on the ends.

  • Heel and foot arch stretch.
  1. Stand opposite a wall, bend one knee forward and move the other foot back. Keep your heels and feet on the ground.
  2. Lean forward a bit.
  3. Stay in this position for 10 seconds and then relax.
  4. Do the same with the other leg.

How Can You Prevent Pain In The Heels?

  • Wear comfortable shoes that have a cushioned sole and that support your feet well.
  • Avoid walking without shoes.
  • If you’re a runner, swim and ride a bicycle several times a week.
  • Lose weight if you’re overweight or obese as having extra pounds puts additional weight and pressure on your feet.
  • Avoid standing on your feet for longer.
  • Stretch at home, particularly after you do physical exercises.
  • Use another pair of running shoes every 500 miles.

Can Plantar Fasciitis Go away On Its Own?

It can – but it’ll take you 6 to 12 months to get rid of this problem completely. By using the above-mentioned remedies, you can help the sore foot heal more quickly.

What Happens If You Let Plantar Fasciitis Go Untreated?

If you leave this condition untreated, it may cause chronic pain which can prevent you from performing everyday activities. Additionally, it’s essential that you don’t alter the way you walk while trying to ease pain because this can lead to hip, foot, back, and knee issues.

When Should You Consult A Doctor?

If none of the above-mentioned remedies helps you get rid of pain, i.e. if the morning pain in your heels persists for weeks and/or interferes with your everyday activities, consult your doctor so that they can evaluate your situation thoroughly and treat the affected foot appropriately. They may suggest wearing special shoes, physical therapy, injection, or a surgical procedure (2).

Moreover, be quick to see your doctor if any of the following symptoms appear:

  • Harsh pain in your heels beginning after an injury.
  • Swelling in your heel area.
  • Pain in your heel along with swelling, tingling, fever, or numbness.

Conclusion

  • Feeling pain in the bottom of your feet or the back of your heel in the morning can be frustrating and debilitating.
  • 5 most common causes of heel pain are: Achilles tendinitis, plantar fasciitis, stress fracture, hypothyroidism, and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Your heels hurt in the morning since pressure and weight are put on them after being contracted at rest.
  • Heel pain can be treated at home. Most common home remedies are: massaging the feet, resting, applying ice, drawing air letter with the big toe, and stretching.
  • Heel pain can be prevented.
  • If left untreated, plantar fasciitis can lead to chronic pain.
  • You should seek medical help if pain in your sore foot persists for weeks.

Sources And References

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC3687890/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC3951039/

Patricia Johnson

She is a personal professional trainer, health and fitness blogger that can transform your life and one of her biggest dreams is to see people healthier. Her articles incorporate in-depth exercise evaluation, nutrition advice based on scientific research and she strongly believes that her readers can achieve amazing health results without the guilt of complexity.
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This content is only for educational and informational purposes. It should not be considered as medical advice or taken as a treatment instead of one from a licensed physician. All readers should consult their doctors or certified health professionals before taking any advice from this site and applying it to their condition. We do not take responsibility for possible health issues of any person following the content in this informational website. All the viewers of this site should consult their physicians or doctors before taking on any supplement, diet, nutrition, or lifestyle program.
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