How to Heal an Achilles Tendon Fast?

(Last Updated On: September 22, 2018 )

Many people suffer from Achilles tendon injury. The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body. It helps to keep your toes on the floor and rise on your tiptoes. When this tendon gets injured, you get a burning sensation, and your leg feels stiff. In severe cases, the Achilles tendon may be torn or ruptured. So, if you know how to heal an Achilles tendon fast, you will get relief quickly.

Causes:

Achilles tendon injury is common among runners, dancers, gymnasts, football players, basketball players and people involved in other sports who need to speed up or slow down fast. The abrupt motion of raising your feet causes this injury. Usually, men over 30 years of age are more likely to suffer from such injury. Here are the major causes of this condition.

  • 1
    Girls who wear high heels all the time can also suffer from Achilles tendon injury. If you have a flat heel or if your leg muscles are very tight, you may have Achilles tendon. 
  • 2
    If you ignore the pain in the Achilles tendon and run even in this condition, then you will suffer from Achilles tendon injury.
  • 3
    When you increase your physical training suddenly, like excessive hill running, it will cause Achilles tendon injury.
  • 4
    Fault in the shoes that you are wearing can cause this injury. If your sole is too stiff at the ball of the foot or if there is excessive heel cushioning, then it will lead to Achilles tendon injury.
  • 5
    If your posterior leg muscles are too tight, then you have this condition.
  • 6
    When you exercise without warming up first, you can have this problem.

Symptoms:

The common symptom of Achilles tendon injury is a pain just above your heel. You will feel the pain when you stand on the toe or stretch your ankle. The pain can be mild initially and get worse later. In the case of a torn tendon, the pain will be severe. The affected area will become stiff and swollen. You can go to the doctor and carry out an X-ray, Thompson test or MRI to see how much the Achilles tendon is affected.

How to heal an Achilles tendon fast?

Intense physical activity like running causes Achilles tendon injury. There are two types of Achilles tendon injury: one affects the lower portion of the tendon, and the other affects the middle portion. Achilles tendon injury can be painful. So, once you notice the symptoms, you should start the treatment immediately. Here are some treatment options that you can choose.

Change shoes:

You should check the condition of your running shoes. If the heel is worn, you should change the shoe. If the shoe is too stiff at the ball of the foot or if the heel shock absorption is too much, then you should buy a new pair of shoe. You should wear proper shoes for walking and running. There are special shoes for Achilles Tendonitis that you can wear.

The ‘RICE’ method:

It is a common treatment for any leg related injury. This method involves the following steps:

  • Take rest and don’t walk unless you have to.
  • Apply ice on the affected area for 20 minutes several times throughout the day.
  • Wrap your ankle using an elastic bandage to prevent swelling. This step is called compression.
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    You should keep your foot raised using a pillow. This elevated position will improve blood circulation.

Physical therapy:

If the ‘REST’ method doesn’t work, you may have to go for physical therapy. Massage and stretching during the physical therapy sessions will improve your condition. Your doctor can prescribe ultrasound and electrical stimulation as well.

Use cast:

Sometimes the way you walk causes Achilles tendon injury. In such a case, you can use a cast or walking boots for walking. This way your tendon won’t move the wrong way.

Avoid certain exercises:

You should avoid exercises that require excessive stretching. You should avoid the ‘stair stretch’ or the ‘incline stretch.’ You have to ensure that too much tension is not applied to your injured tendon.

Use medication:

You can take anti-inflammatory medicines. Over-the-counter medicines also work for a minor injury. You should consult the doctor before taking these medicines.

Prolotherapy treatment:

It uses stem cell treatment to start the natural repair of the injured tendons. It is a very effective treatment for Achilles tendon injury.

Diet:

You should consume food that is rich in collagen and Omega-3. Bone broth is rich in collagen and can be helpful in this case. You should eat foods rich in Omega-3 like salmon, chia seeds, etc.

Soft tissue therapy:

Soft tissue therapies can treat the causes of Achilles tendon injury. You should go to a trained practitioner for these therapies.

Surgery:

If the Achilles tendon is completely torn, then you need to have surgery. If it’s torn partially then, it can be treated with casting. Sometimes, casting is needed after surgery as well. After removing the cast, a heel lift is used for some time.

To prevent Achilles tendon injury, you should always warm-up for a few minutes before exercising. You should stretch the calf muscles every day to improve agility. Always wear shoes of the proper size and avoid wearing high heel shoes. Whenever you notice symptoms of Achilles tendon pain, you should immediately start the treatment. Delaying it will make the condition worse and the recovery period can be long.

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