What is Achilles Tendonitis?

Achilles tendonitis is an overuse injury that affects the Achilles tendon. That’s the tissue at the back of your calf that connects your calf muscles to your heel bone.

Damage and degeneration of a tendon is referred to as Tendonosis.

What Causes Achilles Tendonitis?

Achilles tendonitis can be caused by intense or repetitive strain. It can come from a range of activities since the Achilles tendon is used anytime you walk, run, or jump. However, the injury often occurs among people who only participate in sports once in a while, or athletes who have suddenly increased the intensity of their training.

Some other risk factors include:

  • Repetitive and high-impact activities
  • Age (As you get older, the tendon weakens and becomes more prone to injury)
  • Insufficient warm-up and stretching before athletic activities

Signs and Symptoms of Achilles Tendonitis

  • Pain and swelling
  • Begins as mild aching above the heel or back of the leg
  • Pain appears after physical activity
  • Pain becomes more severe after prolonged activities
  • Stiffness and tenderness that’s at its worst in the morning

How is Achilles Tendonitis Treated?

Self-care measures like rest, ice, and elevating the injury are often effective ways to get some relief from the pain of Achilles tendonitis. However, your doctor may suggest other treatments to help you fully recover, such as:

  • Physiotherapy
  • Over-the-counter or prescription pain medications (depending on the severity of pain) Surgery is used when other treatments don’t work or the tendon is torn 

Physiotherapy for Achilles Tendonitis

Physiotherapy can offer a non-invasive, drug-free option for treatment. Using advanced diagnostics and custom treatment plans, our physiotherapists can uncover the cause of your injury, get you fully healed, and help prevent injuries in the future. Just some of the therapies that can be included in your custom treatment include:

  • Exercise and stretching programs: For increasing calf strength and flexibility.
  • Gait analysis: Studying the way you move to uncover any issues.
  • Custom orthotics: To provide better support or solve gait issues.
  • Education: Guidance on how to modify your activities to avoid future injuries.
  • Braces and Straps: A brace such as a walking boot can protect the injury as it heals.
  • Aqua therapy: To help you start physical training as soon as possible.

How to Prevent Achilles Tendonitis

It may not be possible to totally prevent Achilles tendonitis from happening, but there are a few things you can do to significantly reduce your risks:

  • When starting a new exercise program or activity, start slow and increase the intensity gradually.
  • Wear footwear that provides good support and cushioning
  • Stretch properly before and after exercise
  • Strengthen your calf muscles to make the Achilles tendon more resilient

Book an Appointment

If you think you may have Achilles tendonitis, it’s a good idea to get some professional medical advice. If you try to just walk it off and continue with whatever activity caused your injury, you can end up making things worse.

At Activa Clinics, we know how to get to the root cause of your issue, create a custom treatment plan to solve it, and help prevent Achilles tendon injuries from returning.