About Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis is probably the most common cause of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes (plantar fascia).
Symptoms may come on gradually and are often worse first thing in the morning. Pain may ease a little after the foot has been stretched and has warmed up.
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What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar Fasciitis is an overuse injury caused by repetitive over-stretching of the plantar fascia, which is a thick band of tissue and tendons that runs under the foot. This leads to possible inflammation and thickening of the tendon.
Through overuse, the fascia can become inflamed and painful at its attachment to the heel (calcaneus) bone. It’s more common in sports or activity which involve running, dancing, jumping or lots of walking. Although overuse is ultimately the cause of injury, there are a number of factors which can increase the likelihood of developing Plantar Fasciitis including over-pronation, a high-arched foot, tight calf muscles, poor footwear, being overweight or carrying additional weight during pregnancy, as well as having had a previous injury.
Treatment and Prevention for Plantar Fasciitis
Usually, the pain will ease in time if the trauma causing the inflammation can be eliminated or reduced. ‘Fascia’ tissue, like ‘ligament’ tissue, heals quite slowly. It may take several months or more to go. However, there are a variety of treatments that may help to speed recovery and a combination of different treatments may help.
These vary from rest and simple exercises, through wearing shock-absorbing and supportive insoles, to in rare cases, surgery. Steps to take include:
• Rest your foot
• Choose footwear with cushioned heels & soles
• Wear heel pads & arch supports in footwear
• Pain relief: anti-inflammatories / ice
• Regular stretching exercises
• Low-Level Laser Therapy
• Steroid injections
• Shock-wave therapy