Home treatment is often used for
Achilles tendinopathy and in
physical therapy or rehabilitation after an Achilles
If you have
Achilles tendinopathy, follow these steps to rest,
heal, and strengthen your Achilles tendon and prevent further injury:
- Rest your Achilles tendon. Avoid all
activities that strain the tendon, such as stair climbing or running. While
allowing your tendon the days, weeks, or months it needs to heal, try
other activities, such as swimming. Your doctor will give
you information on what you can and cannot do.
- Reduce pain by icing
your Achilles tendon and taking nonprescription pain relievers such as
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) as
directed. An example of acetaminophen is Tylenol. NSAIDs include
ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and aspirin. Do not give aspirin to anyone younger
than 20 because of the risk of
- Follow your
physical therapy program if one has been prescribed
for you, and do gentle stretching and strengthening exercises, especially
calf stretches .
- Do not smoke or use other tobacco products.
Smoking slows healing, because it decreases blood supply and delays tissue
- Wear footwear that protects the tendon while it is healing.
- Quality athletic shoes that support your
arches and cushion your heels can make a big difference in your daily comfort
and the healing process. If needed, talk to your physical therapist or
podiatrist about heel pads or
- A bandage that keeps your foot
flexed can restrict the motion of the Achilles tendon.
- A silicone
sleeve or pad can distribute pressure on the Achilles tendon.
Your doctor may suggest you wear a
night brace to keep your foot flexed, if your Achilles tendon shortens and
stiffens while you sleep.
Achilles tendon rupture
Whether you treat an
Achilles tendon rupture with surgery or use a cast, splint, brace, walking
boot, or other device to keep your lower leg from moving (immobilizing your
leg), after treatment it's important to follow the
rehabilitation program prescribed by your doctor and physical therapist. This program helps your tendon heal and
prevents further injury.