Bone spurs are tiny bony outgrowths that form at the joints and restrict joint movement. Bone spurs are generally associated with arthritis but they can also be the result of trauma to the joint or certain diseases. Spurs can form on any of the joints of the body including the knees, arms, and hips but they most commonly affect the feet specifically the heel.
A bone spur may remain undetected in the initial stages, and the symptoms may depend on the affected joint. Heel bone spur symptoms include sharp and intense pain in the heel along with swelling and inflammation. Our feet bear the weight of our entire body and so bone spurs in the feet can be particularly painful. Simple chores such as walking to the store or even getting the papers can become quite a task. Since walking is painful, people often stop exercising all together and this can cause secondary conditions such as obesity and muscle degeneration. The symptoms of bone spurs in the spine are quite different from other bone spurs as these spurs can pinch the nerves running along the spine and this results in numbness and tingling. This can also affect the limbs or areas that are connected to the pinched nerve. Therefore, if you have a spinal bone spur you may experience weakness in a certain limb. A bone spur in the left shoulder or the right may be tough to diagnose as it results in non-specific symptoms such as a dull ache or throbbing in the affected shoulder. On the other hand, a bone spur on the upper portion of the foot is easier to diagnose as it causes a noticeable bump just above the big toe. An x-ray test of the affected area would be necessary in order to confirm this diagnosis.
Many theories about the causes of bone spurs have been put forward but it is not always easy to determine the exact cause of the bone spur. Of all the minerals present in the human body, calcium is the most abundant, but in a poor diet, it can also be the most deficient. The total intake of calcium from food varies widely from place to place, and from age to age. Dietary calcium depends on the customary diet, which varies widely from location to location, and from community to community.
The age of the individual also plays a part because a teenager or adolescent is still in the growing stage of his/her life and would therefore require more calcium than an adult. While the adolescent would absorb as much as 75% of the calcium from the food he/she consumes; in an adult, the maximum rate of absorption of calcium would range between 20% and 30%. Our bones are the hardest of our bodily structures, and they seem permanent, but in fact they are subject to degradation just like any other body structure. In order to maintain itself, the body needs to break down its tissues and form them again. An adult gives up 20% of bone calcium and replaces it with new calcium every year. Thus there is a constant process of renewal. Calcium can be found in the soft tissues of our bodies, and is essential for the regular functioning of the cells.
People who suffer from extra bone growths in the legs or spurs on the heel may need to resort to surgery for relief. In surgery healing is slow, so many who suffer from bone spur prefer to alter their diet, with adequate calcium intake to inhibit the progress of this condition. It may seem strange that in order to stop a calcium deposit, you need to increase your calcium intake. In order to understand this apparent paradox, it is important to first understand the process of bone spur formation. What happens is that when the bodys store of calcium is running low, it begins to extract calcium from the bones of the body, especially from a part that is weak. As the calcium is being slowly withdrawn from the bone in question, it causes what may be called an eruption from which the bone material is drawn out into the blood stream. This eruption is the bone spur, and it will carry on extracting its contents until the right amount of calcium along with other vital minerals is provided by the body. This leaching process of the bone spur is best eliminated by supplementing your diet with a tested formulation of calcium mixed with the other vital minerals involved
Some home remedies for bone spurs are as follows:
Another one of the many effective home remedies for bone spurs in your foot would be to place a frozen water bottle on the floor and keep moving it around with your foot. After ten minutes, you can once again place the bottle in the freezer and allow it to cool before repeating this process. Applying a cream that contains capsaicin will provide some relief. Although the cream may sting a bit, you will eventually get used to it. Always wear gloves when applying the medication.
Dietary modifications can help to prevent as well as treat bones spurs. Talk to your doctor before you decide on a specific diet for bone spurs.
In addition to dietary changes and home remedies for bone spurs, there are a number of methods to ease the discomfort caused by this condition.
Bone health is a very important and often overlooked aspect of your overall health. Weakened bones will increase your risk of fractures and bone diseases and can severely impact your quality of life. Most of us do not consciously keep a track of our calcium and vitamin intake and while the effects may take a while to show, they are almost impossible to eliminate in later years. Increase your calcium intake especially if you are above 60 years and discuss you vitamin and mineral intake with your doctor or a nutritionist.