Plantar fasciitis, is a condition that causes pain on the bottom of the heel when putting weight on the foot.
Causes of plantar fasciitis:
Heel pain from plantar fasciitis can have several causes. In rare cases, the heel spur can form and become so big it causes pain. The chronic inflammation of the fascia itself may be the source of pain. As we age, the fat pad that makes up the fleshy portion of the heel becomes thinner and degenerates. This can lead to inadequate padding on the heel and chronic pain in this area. The small nerves that travel under the plantar fascia on their way to the forefoot can also become irritated and may contribute to the pain.
High impact activities (running)
Poor shockabsorbing footwear
Trauma/injury to heel
Tight calf muscles
Symptoms of plantar fasciitis:
The symptoms of plantar fasciitis include:
- Pain in the centre of the heel when weight is placed on the foot.
- 'First step pain' - this is a sharp pain in your heel when you get up after sitting down for awhile
- Sometimes described as a "ripping" sensation under the heel
- Pain in heel and arch after standing for long periods
Treatment for plantar fasciitis:
There is no single cure for plantar fasciitis. Whilst many treatments can be used to ease pain, in order to treat it effectively long-term, the cause of the condition must be corrected.
What can you do?
- Rest until it is not painful. It can be very difficult to rest the foot as most people will be on their feet during the day for work. By walking on the painful foot you are continually aggravating the injury and increasing inflammation. Rest as much as possible and stop any unnecessary activities which place additional stress on the fascia.
- Taping the foot - visit Footfit today for advice on what technique to use
- Apply ice to help reduce pain and inflammation. Cold therapy can be applied regularly until symptoms have resolved. A good tip is to fill up a small water bottle, place it in the freezer, once frozen roll affected foot over the bottle for relief.
- Plantar fasciitis exercises such as stretching a strethening exercises is an important part of treatment and prevention. Simply reducing pain and inflammation alone is unlikely to result in long term recovery. The plantar fascia tightens up making the origin at the heel more susceptible to stress. - Ask Footfit Podiatry today to get an information leaflet on what exercises you can do.
- Get yourself into a supportive, shock absorbing pair of shoes. If you are unsure what to get visit Smiths Sports Shoes for expert advice on what type of shoes to buy.
If you think you might have Plantar Fasciitis or want some advice contact Footfit Podiatry Tauranga 0508 366 834 and we will be happy to help.