Do you have intense heel pain? You may have plantar fasciitis. This condition can curtail your ability to perform everyday activities, from walking to playing sports. Plantar fasciitis can cramp your style, literally and figuratively.
The doctors at Peninsula Orthopedic Associates are experts in diagnosing and treating foot problems. In this blog, they discuss what plantar fasciitis is and how you can treat it.
What is plantar fasciitis and what causes it?
The wide strip of connective tissue that lines the bottom of your foot, from your heel to your toes, is called the plantar fascia. It provides significant support to your feet and body. If it gets inflamed, the condition is called plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis is often caused by continued stress to the ligament. This stress can cause tiny tears, which can inflame the ligament and lead to intense heel pain. You’re more likely to be affected by plantar fasciitis if you’re:
- Overweight or obese
- Performing work that requires standing for long periods of time
- An avid walker or runner
- Age 40 or older
The condition is also more common in people with certain anatomical features, such as flat feet or high arches.
Treating plantar fasciitis
The goal of the team at Peninsula Orthopedic Associates is to get you mobile and pain-free quickly. Toward this end, there are different treatment options, and we may recommend a combination of them:
Our initial strategy for treating plantar fasciitis is to try the most traditional, noninvasive methods available, including:
- Resting your foot
- Icing your heel and sole
- Taking over-the-counter pain medication, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen
- Wearing supportive shoes and orthotics
We don’t advise taking pain medication any longer than a month straight.
One of the most important components of our treatment plans is physical therapy, because the plantar fascia must be loosened in order to get relief. There are several exercises that can help alleviate plantar fasciitis pain by strengthening the tissue.
As walking cast is a type of brace that you wear on your foot for several weeks. A walking cast will give your plantar fascia rest, which can help heal the condition.
Steroid injections can help relieve the symptoms of plantar fasciitis, but they aren’t a long-term solution.
If you end up needing surgery, we can perform procedures that will either elongate your calf muscles or partially cut the plantar fascia ligament to permanently ease the tightness.
The good news is that the vast majority of patients respond to nonsurgical treatments. If you have plantar fasciitis or want to see if you do, book an appointment online or over the phone with Peninsula Orthopedic Associates today.