Plantar Fasciitis

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

The Plantar Fascia is the name given to the thick band of tissue found in the arch of your foot. The muscle connects the heel bone to the bones in your toes, allowing movement in your foot. When your Plantar Fascia becomes inflamed it is known as Plantar Fasciitis. This condition is caused by a gradual or sudden tear in the muscle tissue, which is common in active people who play a lot of sport or go running regularly. Injury to the Plantar Fascia is also common among the elderly as your muscles simply wear out over time through every day use.

If you’ve got Plantar Fasciitis you’ll feel a sharp pain on the underside of your heel, usually when you walk or move after sitting or resting for a long period of time. Fortunately, there are several easy and affordable treatment options available for this common condition.

 

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Treating A Painful Plantar Fascia Effectively

Once you’ve established that you’ve got Plantar Fasciitis, you’ll need to take steps to reduce the pain and prevent further damage to your Plantar Fascia. One of the most highly recommended options for treating a painful Plantar Fascia is an orthotic insole. This will correct your posture, by re-aligning the foot, ankle and lower leg muscles. Many people with pain in their Plantar Fascia are simply suffering from fallen arches, where the arch of the foot flattens when you walk, which can easily be corrected by wearing the right orthotic insoles.

 

 

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There are a variety of options available for orthotic treatment. You can have a custom-made insole by visiting your GP, or podiatrist, or you can simply purchase standard orthotics for arch correction. Custom made devices are usually more expensive and are often unnecessary, as several studies have found that Plantar Fascia pain can be relieved just as effectively with a standard orthotic. Failing to address a fallen arch can cause many problems later on in life, including knee and hip problems due to misalignment and strain on the muscles.

As well as wearing your orthotics every time you go out, whether you are going to be exercising or simply going shopping, you might need to complete some stretching exercises to strengthen the muscles. If you have a severe Plantar Fascia injury and it is too painful to walk, you should limit the time you spend moving around to give your muscles time to heal. Taking anti-inflammatory pain relief medication, and applying ice to the painful area, is another solution to help reduce pain in your Plantar Fascia after exercising.

 

Stretching Exercises For Plantar Fasciitis

There are a number of useful stretching exercises you can do to help alleviate the pain caused by Plantar Fasciitis and other foot complaints.

  • Tennis Ball Exercise
  • Towel Stretch
  • Calf Muscle Stretch
  • Achilles Tendon Stretch

In extreme cases, an operation may be necessary to help your damaged Plantar Fascia heal. However, for most people with Plantar Fasciitis, this is not necessary and other treatment methods will always be taken first.

To prevent damage to your muscles when exercising, you’ll need to make sure that you are stretching properly and wearing shoes with an appropriate amount of support for your ankles and heels. If you have any questions or simply seeking advice, please do feel free to contact us.

 

Plantar Fasciitis FAQs

 

How do I know if I have Plantar Fasciitis?

The most common complaint of people with Plantar Fasciitis is pain on the bottom of the heel. It usually affects one foot but can sometimes affect both.

 

What causes Plantar Fasciitis?

There are many contributing factors to Plantar Fasciitis.  These include:

Flat Feet, High Arches, Obesity, Shortened Achilles Tendon, Over-Pronation, Improper Footwear, Tight Muscles

 

Why does Plantar Fasciitis hurt?

Plantar Fasciitis causes pain because the Plantar Fascia tendon has been over stretched.  This causes micro-tears in the tendon which become inflamed.

 

Why does Plantar Fasciitis hurt more first thing in the morning?

People suffering from Plantar Fasciitis find it more painful in the morning because the tendon has become shortened during the night (or periods of inactivity) and is not being stretched.  When you first get up in the morning and put weight on your feet the tendon is immediately stretched and this will cause some pain.

 

What can I do to help with Plantar Fasciitis?

There are a few things you can do to help:

  1. FootActive insoles. Using a pair of FootActive Insoles will support the arch and stabilise the heel.  Supporting the arch is vital as this will take the pressure off the Plantar Fascia tendon and stop the over stretching.
  2. This can be done by using a Moji Massager or rolling a ball, bottle, can etc. under the arch of the foot. Moji Pro products can be frozen for a more effective massage.
  3. Stretching exercises. Please see our helpful videos here.
  4. Anti-Inflammatories such as Ibroprufen

 

How do insoles help with Plantar Fasciitis?

FootActive insoles help with Plantar Fasciitis by supporting the arch of the foot and stabilizing the heel.  This stops the foot rolling inwards and also supports the fascia tendon.

 

How do stretching exercises help with Plantar Fasciitis?

Stretching can help as quite often tight calf muscles or Achilles Tendons can contribute to Plantar Fasciitis. Please see our stretching videos.

 

How long does Plantar Fasciitis last for?

Unfortunately there is no exact timescale as everyone is different. Over 90% of cases should go away with the use of home remedies such as insoles, stretching and massage.  If problems do persist or get worse please consult your GP.

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