We have always referred to something that drives us crazy as “the pain in the neck”. However, I am strongly convinced that if there are any chances that our dictionaries are written by people suffering from plantar fasciitis, the phrase would possibly be changed to “the pain in the heel”. For people who are on their feet quite often, which include many of us not just athletes or runners as you may have thought, plantar fasciitis is a nightmare. But wait, it is not actually a nightmare because it haunts you all day long. Well, it seems like we do need further insight into this annoying thing and seek for something that can heal our heels.
What is plantar fasciitis & What causes plantar fasciitis
First, in order to tackle plantar fasciitis, we need to get down finding out what actually lies behind our pain. In fact, the irritating pain you feel stems from the straining of a thick issue band named the plantar fascia. This ligament is what supports your arches. When it is drained, the heel consequently experiences pain. But then you may continue to wonder why the plantar fascia is strained. Well, in this case, there are many factors leading up to this.
- The first reason is that you may have a deformed structure of foot. For example, you are born with flat feet or high-arched feet. If so, you are more likely to be prone to plantar fasciitis than others.
- Second, being overweight may also increase the pressure and eventually lead to the pain in the feet every time you walk or stand.
- Third, it is the amount of hours you spend being on feet. Job that requires standing, walking or running for a long time may lead directly to the terrible feeling in your feet. That explains why plantar fasciitis is often associated with runners.
Still, there is one reason for plantar fasciitis that have nothing to do with your weight, your work or foot structure. It’s your choice of shoes. Yes, shoes do matter a lot. Shoes that do not fit or provide enough support for your feet will end up worsening the pain.
Symptoms of plantar fasciitis
But how we know for sure that we are having plantar fasciitis, not just a random pain we happen to feel in the feet. You should check whether you have developed pain in the bottom of your heels or in the arches. If yes, answer the question when you often feel them.
- Do they become really sharp when you first get out of bed in the morning, then become less severe when you take several more steps?
- Do they strike your feet right at the moment you start to stand up or walk again after a long period of sitting?
If the pains keep returning on arising, you are likely to have plantar fasciitis. However, in order to be sure about that, it is recommended to go to doctor and have your feet checked.
Please note that there are other things apart from plantar fasciitis that can cause foot pain. For instance, if you have pain at night, you should go to doctor to check whether you are suffering from arthritis or not.
Plantar fasciitis treatments
Now that you have plantar fasciitis – which is by no means an easy thing to experience, you have to seek for ways that put an end to all these irritating pains. Basically, plantar fasciitis can be demolished by two ways: surgery and non-surgical treatments. You don’t have to be overly worried as there are only a small percentage of patients that needs surgery. In most other cases, it can be cured without any surgery.
You can try some of the ways listed below to deal with plantar fasciitis:
- Ice massaging: This way proves to be useful when it comes to alleviating the inflammation. However, bear in mind that directly applying ice onto your feet is not recommended. Instead, put ice inside a towel.
- Choosing shoes wisely: A good choice of footwear will do your feet well. Opt for those that include arch support and foot cushioning. They will help to maintain your feet in the natural and comfortable alignment to prevent overstraining. You can check out best shoes for plantar fasciitis here.
- Stretching: Spend some time doing some exercises. Making your muscles feel relaxed will alleviate the pain.
- Stop walking around with barefoot: Use shoes that can absorb the shock instead.
- Using night splints: You may feel uncomfortable wearing a bulky thing to sleep. However, it does prove to be quite helpful. It keeps your feet in the right angle all night long and prevent the sharp pain in the morning. You can check out best night splints for plantar fasciitis here.
- Cutting down your activities: Though it may sound impossible, it does help a lot. As walking or running too much leads to plantar fasciitis, reducing your activities may be a solution.
- For people who have already developed plantar fasciitis, you can try applying some ways recommended above for pain treatment or consult to your doctors for a more professional approach to this problem.
- For those who have not had plantar fasciitis yet, please note that prevention is better than cure. So, take care of your feet from now. For example, you should pay more attention when choosing shoes or insoles for it definitely benefit your feet a lot and prevent plantar fasciitis.
For more details about stretching, ice massaging, etc., read Home remedies for plantar fasciitis.
Still, there are many other ways to end plantar fasciitis besides those mentioned above. Many may choose other physical therapy to deal with it. Some with more severe symptoms may go to hospital and get medications or injections. You can consult this clip for information on plantar fasciitis and its treatment:
To conclude, though plantar fasciitis makes us suffer a lot, it is by no means incurable:
Plantar Fasciitis Infographic