Looking at the big picture of life, we learn early on that every action has a reaction. Whether it’s drinking and driving, maxing out your credit card or having unprotected sex, every decision you make creates a reaction or consequence. So does it seem so silly to say mixing bad health habits and our bodies are just another example of adding fuel to a fire?
Look at it this way: to avoid the flu, we inject the flu into our bodies hoping the antibodies fight each other off. To lower our cholesterol we take medicine, which could result in headaches or diarrhea. Our bodies have a strange way of reacting when it comes to encountering a medical condition. You know the “funny bone song"? Well, the same is true for the rest of your body. Everything is connected somehow, someway. And to get to the point of this article, the same is true for tendonitis. Posterior tibial tendonitis to be specific.
As most of us know from experience - or knowing someone with tendonitis - it can be simply described as inflammation of a tendon due to injury, overuse, poor biomechanics or age. When you say you have posterior tibial tendonitis you are referring to the tendon attached to your tibia that helps maintain the arch in your foot. So, if you are pointing your foot down or in, you are using your posterior tibial tendon to do so. Imagine not being able to do that?
If you are one of the many people suffering this condition, it is probably not the only condition you are facing. Posterior tibial tendonitis can be a direct result of flat foot, high arches or arthritis – most commonly rheumatoid arthritis. Remember how we talked about every action having a reaction. Well, the same goes for this. The end result - if not treated in a timely fashion - can be a ruptured tendon. Can we say ouch! That is when you know you are in some serious trouble.
Because foot pain is so common and there are so many foot conditions a person can get, ask your self this: can I stand on my toes without pain? If the answer is no, you can probably narrow down your list of possibility to posterior tibial tendonitis and then call a doctor immediately.
So remember, every action to your body creates a reaction; and sometimes that reaction is not in your favor. Keep this in mind the next time you stand up to walk, or lace up your shoes to run. Did you stretch? Are you overusing your feet on a daily basis? Do you have good walking mechanics? If you are flat footed, are you taking proper care of your feet to exercise?
Come back Wednesday for Part 2 where we will examine things you can do in the comfort of your own home to ease your pain and when it is safe to resume normal activity.