Experiencing discomfort in your heel upon standing or sitting down could indicate plantar fasciitis. This prevalent condition can hinder your mobility, making activities like walking, running, and even getting out of bed in the morning challenging.
Plantar fasciitis is a condition that arises as a result of the excessive strain and overwork on the plantar fascia, a thick tissue band located on the bottom of the foot. This tissue is responsible for absorbing shocks and stresses during movement. However, when the plantar fascia becomes overworked, it is unable to effectively perform its role, leading to inflammation and discomfort in the foot.
One of the most prevalent indications of plantar fasciitis is experiencing discomfort in the sole of your foot and heel. However, it’s important to note that not everyone with this condition will necessarily have this particular symptom. Typically, the pain tends to subside after taking a few steps or engaging in physical activity.
Your doctor can diagnose plantar fasciitis by doing a physical exam and looking for tender areas in your foot. Your provider may also recommend X-rays to see if there’s something else causing your pain.
Rest is the key to treating plantar fasciitis. It’s important to avoid activities that put extra stress on your feet, such as running or dancing. You can also ease the pain by using ice, NSAIDs or iontophoresis (a device that emits a stream of water).
It’s important to use good shoes that support your arch and cushion your heel, which helps decrease strain on the plantar fascia. If you’re a runner, it’s also a good idea to change your shoes regularly to keep them in top condition.
Tight calf muscles and tight Achilles tendons can also contribute to plantar fasciitis. These problems prevent your feet from flexing and bringing your toes up toward your shin as you walk, which increases the stress on the plantar fascia.
You should also try to keep your weight within a healthy range. Overweight people are at an increased risk for developing plantar fasciitis because their feet aren’t able to absorb the stress they’re putting on them.
Stretching exercises and a stretching routine can help to reduce the stress on the plantar fascia and improve its flexibility. They’re best done before you start any new activity, such as running or walking.
If you have symptoms of plantar fasciitis, you should contact your provider as soon as possible so he or she can prescribe the right treatment. This can include icing, NSAIDs, iontophoresis, or cortisone injections.
Most patients with plantar fasciitis improve by starting simple treatments such as icing, changing their footwear and doing some stretching exercises. However, some patients require more invasive therapy such as cortisone injections or platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections.
Typically, these treatments will improve the pain for three to six months. If they don’t, your doctor might suggest other therapies to relieve the pain, such as dry needling or joint mobilization.
Aside from these treatments, your health care provider can also give you advice on how to relieve the pain by doing daily stretches and strengthening exercises. You can also wear a cushioned walking boot and crutches when you’re experiencing heel pain to allow your feet to heal.
You might also like to read: