Are you suffering from a pain in your heel or arch area? If so, you may be experiencing plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of this type of pain and it’s important to understand what exactly it is, and how best to treat it.
Read on for some insight into this condition, its causes, and treatments available for sufferers.
Defining Plantar Fasciitis
Our feet take us places every day, but have you ever stopped to consider the intricate workings of this vital body part? The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, connecting the heel to the toes. Its main purpose is to act as a leaver to walk, run and jump, as well as to support the sole of the foot. When this tissue becomes inflamed, it can lead to a painful condition called plantar fasciitis.
Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
This common ailment can be caused by a number of factors, such as overuse of the feet and high-impact activities. While it’s often associated with people who spend a lot of time on their feet, it can affect anyone.
Certain lifestyle factors, such as obesity or wearing poor-fitting shoes that do not provide the necessary support and cushioning, can also be a factor in the onset of Plantar Fasciitis.
In addition, other conditions such as flat feet, high arches, and tight calf muscles can exacerbate the inflammation. Understanding the various causes of plantar fasciitis and how they affect the feet is essential in preventing and treating the condition. With proper care and attention, individuals can manage it and get back to their daily activities pain-free.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
If you’re experiencing pain, tenderness, inflammation, or stiffness in your feet, it could be a sign that you have plantar fasciitis.
If your pain is causing discomfort, it’s best to make an appointment to come in and see us so we can accurately diagnose your pain. We’ll start with a thorough foot examination to look for signs of inflammation or swelling. We may also ask you to describe your symptoms, such as when the pain is at its worst or what types of activities make it worse. In some cases, we may refer you for further imaging tests like an X-ray or MRI to get a closer look at the affected area.
If you suspect that you might have this condition, don’t ignore the signs. With the right diagnosis, we can start exploring treatment options to help you get back on your feet and feeling your best.
Treatment Options for Plantar Fasciitis
Once you have an accurate diagnosis, we can start to treat your pain. Our treatment will depend on the cause and seriousness of your heel pain but could include custom foot orthotics, shockwave therapy, foot mobilisation therapies, dry needling and exercise rehabilitation.
If you are yet to visit a podiatrist, rest and ice are often recommended as a first line of defence, as they can help reduce inflammation and alleviate discomfort. Orthotic insoles can also offer support and relief for those suffering from plantar fasciitis. Our friends at Foot Health Solutions stock a range of podiatrist-approved Orthotic Insoles, including the Footlogics Plantar Fasciitis Insole.
With many treatment options available, sufferers can take comfort in the fact that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Prevention Methods for Plantar Fasciitis
There are ways to prevent this painful condition from occurring. One of the most effective prevention methods is stretching exercises, to strengthen the muscles in your foot and increase flexibility, thereby reducing the likelihood of inflammation or injury. The Fasciitis Fighter is available in the clinic or online via Foot Health Solutions. It was designed by a physiotherapist to help strengthen the foot and provide relief for ongoing plantar fasciitis and heel pain symptoms.
Additionally, selecting proper footwear is essential in preventing plantar fasciitis. Shoes with good arch support and cushioning can provide the necessary support and distribute your weight evenly. We stock a range of orthotic shoes and sandals instore that are designed to support your feet, but also look great! Come in and see the range anytime.
Compression Socks can also help with preventing symptoms, while also acting to strengthen the foot structure and prevent overuse injuries. We have OS1st Plantar Fasciitis Compression Socks in the clinic, which are also available online at Foot Health Solutions. They feature award-winning, patented technology, and are available in ‘no-show’ or quarter length.
Don’t let plantar fasciitis hold you back from the activities you love. Incorporate these prevention methods into your routine and keep your feet healthy and pain-free.
If you have any concerns about your feet, early diagnosis by a podiatrist is key! We encourage you to call our friendly team and make an appointment with one of our podiatrists. Call us on 5522 1230.