A heel spur is a condition that affects the largest bone in your foot... your heel.As you might imagine, the heel absorbs a large amount of shock during the course of its workday.A heel spur is a calcium deposit that builds when the plantar fascia pulls away from the heel area of the foot. This calcium deposit is where the 'spur' part of the heel spur gets its name.The aforementioned plantar fascia is the band of tissue that runs all along the bottom of the foot. You may have heard of another common foot ailment known as plantar fasciitis - this is where this condition gets its name from.Needless to say having a boney spur develop on your heel will not go un-noticed for long. Heel spurs can cause an intense type of pain when any pressure at all is applied to that area.Since heel spurs develop as a result of the plantar fascia being pulled away from the heel, the root cause isn't the fact that calcium deposits have developed, rather the ultimately painful deposits develop due to what ever is causing the plantar fascia to be pulled away from the heel itself.Over pronation of the foot which causes the arch to flatten out is the mechanical problem that causes the plantar fascia to overstretch and pull aware from heel.Footwear can also contribute significantly to the development of heel spurs. As with other know foot problems high heels aren't the best choice of shoe for continuing foot health. This is why women have a significantly higher incident of foot problems... among them being heel spurs.For the vast majority of heel spur cases prevention is the best treatment. Having said that, and remembering that the spur actually develops because of an over-stretching of the plantar fascia, one needs to determine the cause of the over-stretching.If the root cause is over-pronation (flat feet), orthotics (special shoe inserts) can be a very effective measure to provide relief for the pain and allow the condition to heal up.Other common treatments can be as simple as a routine of stretching exercises or even weight reduction. Heel cradles, and heel cups will also help take the stretching pressure off while providing additional shock absorption as well.As with any health condition is the problem doesn't respond to conventional in house treatment or becomes chronic, consult with your physician.