How Physical Therapy Can Help Your Achilles Tendonitis

What is Achilles Tendonitis?

The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the human body. This tendon joins the calf muscles to the heel bone and travels down the back of the lower leg. If it’s put under strain, it can get inflamed. This is known as Achilles tendonitis . If it’s left untreated, the Achilles tendon can become ruptured or even torn.

Causes and Types of Achilles Tendonitis

The causes of Achilles tendonitis include:

  • Running on uneven or hard surfaces
  • Wearing improper shoes when exercising or running
  • Introducing stair climbing to an exercise routine
  • Increasing the intensity of an exercise too soon
  • An injured calf muscle
  • Not warming up properly before an exercise routine
  • Sudden intense physical activity

The types of Achilles tendonitis are non-insertional and insertional. Non-insertional Achilles tendonitis is more common in both active and young people. The fibers of the tendon begin to break down and swell. Insertional Achilles tendonitis affects the lower section of the tendon and it inserts into the heel bone. It’s not related to any one specific activity.

The Benefits of Physical Therapy for Achilles Tendonitis

Physical therapy is the treatment of choice for Achilles tendonitis . A physical therapist provides many different types of treatment. They provide flexibility and stretching exercises to help the tendon heal and decrease pain. With strengthening exercise, you can regain strength and protect yourself from another injury. Physical therapists also provide deep massage to increase blood circulation and flexibility. They also do ultrasound heat therapy, which aids in the healing process and increases blood circulation.

With physical therapy, your physical therapist will devise a specific recovery program just for you. He or she will evaluate your physical fitness, regular level of activity and extent of the injury to your Achilles tendon. If you’ve incurred an injury to your Achilles tendon, seeing a physical therapist can get you on the road to recovery.

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