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Plantar Fasciitis and Aging Athletes

Plantar Fascitis and Aging Athletes

As individuals reach the age of 50 and beyond, they may encounter a common issue involving their plantar fascia—the ligament responsible for supporting the arch of the foot. Over time, this ligament can undergo thickening and weakening, which often leads to the development of plantar fasciitis among older athletes and individuals within this age group.

Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that causes foot pain. It occurs when small tears develop in the ligament known as the plantar fascia, making it harder for the ligament to stretch and heal properly. These tears can also hinder the proper stretching of the ligament, resulting in inflammation, swelling, and fluid build-up in the tissue. This leads to further discomfort and pain in the affected area.

If left untreated, inflammation and excessive fluid accumulation can lead to the development of painful heel spurs. Therefore, it is crucial to seek medical attention if you are experiencing symptoms related to plantar fasciitis. Visiting a physician at the earliest signs of discomfort can help prevent further complications and alleviate the pain associated with this condition.

Your doctor will conduct a physical examination and ask about when and where the pain began, where it hurts and how frequently you walk or run. They may also order tests to rule out other issues that might be contributing to it.

Tests available include X-rays to identify bone fractures or an MRI, which can detect problems like herniated discs or any signs of abnormalities such as bone calcifications or thickening in the plantar fascia.

Doctors typically recommend home treatments such as icing, stretching and wearing supportive shoes and orthotics as first line approaches to treating plantar fasciitis symptoms. If these do not work effectively, corticosteroid injections into damaged areas of your plantar fascia could also be considered.

Surgery may be required to successfully treat plantar fasciitis and help alleviate its pain while increasing range of motion.

You might also like to read:

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