Plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue that runs along the underneath of the foot from the heel bone to the toes. It acts as a bowstring pulled between the heel and the toes and helps in maintaining the longitudinal arch of the foot.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
As the name suggests this is a condition where plantar fascia is irritated/inflamed as a result of stress it is put under during daily activities. Some of the factors which could potentially increase relative stress on the plantar fascia are but not limited to flat feet/low arch, very high arch, knock knees, tight calf muscles or any biomechanical mal-alignment in the lower limbs that could alter the way you walk or place the feet on the ground. People with flat feet are at the top of the list presenting with plantar fasciitis, however, any mal-alignment or activity that puts excessive stress or over load on the plantar fascia can result in plantar fasciitis.
Symptoms of Inflamed Plantar Fascia
It usually presents itself as heel pain, but can sometimes be felt along the whole foot and or the back of the leg. Especially, the inner heel is tender to touch or slight pressure as that is where the plantar fascia originates. Initially the symptoms are worse in the morning and getting onto your feet after a period of rest which settles down after taking a few steps. Your feet might also be sore and painful at the end of the day if you are on your feet mostly through the day. And, the symptoms become more persistent as the condition gets worse.
How to Relieve Heel Pain Due to Plantar Fasciitis:
The following things could be considered to help alleviate the symptoms and treat plantar fasciitis:
1. The first thing to start with is avoiding the activities if you know which are causing stress or putting extra load on the plantar fascia
2. Foot wear: Avoiding high heels and considering flat foot wear with soft soles
3. Taping which can help in offloading the plantar fascia
4. Icing the heel and foot to calm down the pain and inflammation
5. Stretching plantar fascia and calf muscles to increase flexibility
6. Custom made orthotics if you have low arch or flat feet
7. Strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the foot
As this can be a condition that is difficult to get rid of we are happy to advise you on the measures that are most appropriate to your recovery. Allow us to help you stay on the move. Call Life Force for an in depth assessment at 416-207-9395.
Life Force Physio is a local physiotherapy clinic serving Etobicoke and Mississauga (Toronto). Our team of Physiotherapists, Massage Therapists and Kinesiologists is passionate in their level of care, and believes better health is an achievable goal for everyone. We run a Physiotherapist Supervised Gym designed to support your healing, rehabilitation and ongoing fitness safely and at your pace. Located at Burnhamthorpe Rd and The West Mall.