What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain. It is an injury to the plantar fascia, the most important structure at the bottom of your foot that holds your plantar arch together. Pain is usually located at the heel, but can also happen underneath the arch. Plantar fasciitis is characterized by a sharp pain in the morning when you first stand up and/or pain after a while of walking or running.

When left untreated, plantar fasciitis can become very painful and cause injuries elsewhere as you change your way of walking. In more severe cases of plantar fasciitis, as tensions build up, the plantar fascia can tear up and even completely rupture.

What causes plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is caused by an excessive tension in the foot. Therefore, many things can lead to an injury: flat feet, cavus feet, inadequate shoes, weight gain, new or more intense physical activity, foot sprain, etc.

Plantar fasciitis, like any other injury, is painful because there is inflammation around the injury. The more severe the plantar fasciitis, the more inflammation there will be. Hence, it is important to treat your plantar fasciitis early.

How to treat plantar fasciitis?

Your podiatrist can easily treat your plantar fasciitis by applying the proper treatment for your condition:

1. Reducing your plantar fasciitis pain

Your podiatrist can prescribe anti-inflammatory medication according to your medical condition to reduce your foot pain. For severe cases of plantar fasciitis, your podiatrist can provide more efficient pain relief with an ultrasound-guided cortisone injection. By utilizing ultrasound techniques, your podiatrist is able to visualize the extent of your plantar fasciitis and to precisely administer the cortisone injection. Ultrasound-guided cortisone injections are less painful and more efficient than standard injections to treat plantar fasciitis.

2. Providing proper support for your plantar fasciitis

Your foot needs support in order to heal properly and to prevent the plantar fasciitis from happening again. Your podiatrist can provide temporary support and pain relief with a sport tapping. For long-term treatment and prevention of your plantar fasciitis, your podiatrist can provide you a custom-made plantar orthotic.

3. Strengthening your plantar fascia

Your plantar fasciitis is essentially caused by an excess of tension in your foot. Your podiatrist can prescribe you proper strengthening exercises and stretches to relieve your plantar fasciitis from the excess tension.

How to treat plantar fasciitis at home?

While waiting for your podiatric consultation, you can relieve your pain at home by following these steps:

Take some rest

Reduce or stop if possible the activity that has caused your injury. Your plantar fasciitis cannot heal if you continue to exercise.

Ice your heel

Reduce the inflammation in your heel by applying two or three times a day an ice bag for 5-15 minutes.

Change your shoes

Wear a pair of shoes that will give you proper arch support. Stay away from flexible shoes as they will make your plantar fasciitis worse. Refrain from walking barefoot.

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