Do I Need Plantar Fasciitis Treatment?
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most prevalent causes of heel pain in adults today. This disorder typically presents with, you guessed it, pain that is especially harsh when taking your first few steps in the morning.
Keep reading if you are experiencing foot pain and want to know if plantar fasciitis treatment is something you might need.
What Is Plantar Fasciitis?
It is characterised by inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of fibrous tissue located on the sole.
This tissue is connected to the calcaneus, commonly known as the heel bone, and the bottom of the toes. This tissue is essential to the foot’s walking mechanics because it supports its arch.
The plantar fascia experiences strain or stress increased by the weight put on your foot, like standing. This strain is also escalated by pushing off the ball of your feet and toes.
Both of these actions happen while running and walking. When this tissue is overworked or just with constant use over time, the elasticity of plantar fascia is diminished, and you can begin to experience irritation during everyday activities.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
The inflammation and heel pain that is occurs in the plantar fascia is caused by:
- Increased activity levels
- The anatomy or foot shape
- The kind of surface on which activity takes place
- The shoes you wear
- Being overweight
There are other less common causes of plantar fasciitis, such as a medical history of lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.
Plantar Fasciitis Symptoms
Pain is the most prevalent symptom of plantar fasciitis, and it often occurs in the heel and Achilles tendon. Plantar heel pain can occur suddenly after missing a step or when jumping from a considerable height.
This foot pain is usually worse in the morning or after a long period of inactivity, and this is referred to as “first-step pain”. The pain intensity is sometimes reduced after warming up or with more active use, but extended or vigorous activity will worsen the pain.
Most people experience their plantar fasciitis pain more intensely with bare feet or when wearing shoes with poor arch support.
Heel spurs, which occur when calcium deposits build up on the underside of the heel bone, are often wrongly assumed to be the only cause of heel pain.
Although heel spurs occur often, they are the body’s natural response to traction or pulling and usually do not cause any actual foot pain.
Therefore, diagnosis is essential as plantar fasciitis is but one of the many causes of heel pain. You will need to be examined by a physician to get your plantar fasciitis diagnosed..
Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis
The general rule is that the longer you have experienced the symptoms, the more intense the pain will be and the longer the treatment will take to relieve pain.
Treatment for Plantar fasciitis include:
Stretching Exercises and Attending a Physical Therapist
Stretching is one of the most effective ways to treat plantar fasciitis and should be focused on the Achilles tendon and plantar fasciitis tissues. Physical therapy can teach you the stretching techniques that you can then do yourself at home.
These exercises will help you alleviate the pain, and they will also strengthen your lower leg muscles, stabilising your ankle and preventing future pain.
Icing and Medication
Icing the spot that is the most painful a few times a day will reduce pain and inflammation.Your doctor might also prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for chronic plantar fasciitis..
Rest, Modifying Your Activity or Orthotics
One of the most effective treatments for plantar fasciitis is easy, reducing the weight and stress on your foot!
It is wise to combine the following:
- Exercising on a more shock absorbent surface
- Getting more supportive shoes, especially those which cushion the heel, or try heel cups
- Make use of athletic tape to support your ligaments and muscles during daily and workout activities
- Wearing night splints while sleeping to continue stretching
- Minimizing the distance or longevity of walking and running
- Changing workout activities: such as swimming in place of running.
Most cases of plantar fasciitis generally improve after a period of stretching, icing and the other treatment methods mentioned above. However, if your symptoms do not improve or worsen, steroid injections will decrease the inflammation and pain.
Having completed my Bachelor’s degree in medicine and currently pursuing a house job at a well-reputed hospital in California, I decided to utilize my spare time in sharing knowledge with others through my blog. Apart from my time spent in the medical field, I love to read fiction novels and go on long drives.