When you walk or run, the thick tissue on the bottom of your feet connecting the front of your foot with your heel—the plantar fascia—stretches and contracts. Repeated stretching and contracting of the plantar fascia can precipitate tearing or inflammation, otherwise known as plantar fasciitis. Runners are often afflicted with plantar fasciitis, which can cause a stabbing pain located on the bottom of the heel. Some simple at-home therapies for plantar fasciitis include refraining from activities that aggravate the area, icing it with an ice pack or massaging it by rolling a frozen water bottle under your feet. Additionally, a podiatrist may be able to help heal the plantar fascia by taping or splinting it, creating custom orthotics, or suggesting proper footwear and gentle stretching exercises.
Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Richard P. Jacoby, DPM from Extremity Health Centers. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
What Is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
- Excessive running
- Having high arches in your feet
- Other foot issues such as flat feet
- Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
- Being on your feet very often
There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.
- Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
- Maintain a healthy weight
- If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain
There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Scottsdale and Buckeye, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.