Plantar fasciitis is a common problem experienced by Americans every year. Ranging from mild to severe cases, plantar fasciitis can lead to pain in the heel and the bottom of the foot, making walking long distances uncomfortable and sometimes unbearable.
With plantar fasciitis, the fascia—a thin band of tissue that attaches from heel to toes— becomes stressed or overstretched. This can create micro tears and inflammation that results in pain. Further aggravating the condition are bone spurs that may form in the heel area.
Many individuals with plantar fasciitis have a difficult time taking the first few steps after waking in the morning or after sitting for long periods of time. As they stand to take their first steps, they may hold onto furniture for support as they walk, lowering pressure on their feet for pain relief.
If left untreated without changes to routine, it is possible for the condition to worsen where even short durations of standing or walking lead to immense pain.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis
The causes of plantar fasciitis can vary, but generally relate to the following:
- Abnormal gait
- Flat feet
- High arches
- Irregular foot positioning
- Standing or walking for long periods of time
- Tightness of the Achilles tendon
- Walking in flat shoes with hard, thin soles for long periods of time
- Wearing worn-down shoes for long periods of time
How to Treat Plantar Fasciitis
Fortunately, there are treatments available to treat the painful condition of plantar fasciitis. A foot specialist can help find the right podiatry plan for you, incorporating beneficial therapies when appropriate. These can include:
- Calf and foot stretches, lowering tension to the Achilles area
- Electrical stimulation and ultrasound to promote pain relief as well as increase blood flow
- Exercises that strengthen small muscles around the toes as well as the arch
- Strengthening of the ankle for improved movement when standing or running
- Stretching of the ankle and foot to reduce tissue texture or knots
What You Can do on Your Own for Plantar Fasciitis
- Add arch supports to your shoes
- Avoid wearing worn-out or hard, flat shoes
- Promote good ankle and foot alignment with shoes that provide arch and ankle support
- Stretch daily at home
- Talk to a foot specialist to learn how to tape the foot and ankle to perform activities without pain
- Wear a night splint to keep the foot and ankle in a neutral position
Manage Your Plantar Fasciitis With Foot Specialists of Birmingham
There’s a better way to stop the heel and foot pain caused by plantar fasciitis. Contact Foot Specialists of Birmingham about professional and comprehensive podiatry treatments for a better quality of life.