Plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tur fas-e-I-tis) is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes (plantar fascia).
Plantar fasciitis commonly causes stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As you get up and move, the pain normally decreases, but it might return after long periods of standing or when you stand up after sitting.
Plantar fasciitis is more common in runners. People who are overweight and those who wear shoes with inadequate support also have an increased risk of plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis typically causes a stabbing pain in the bottom of your foot near the heel. The pain is usually the worst with the first few steps after awakening, although it can also be triggered by long periods of standing or when you get up after sitting. The pain is usually worse after exercise, not during it.
Even though plantar fasciitis can develop without an obvious cause, some factors can increase your risk of developing this condition. They include:
1. Age: Plantar fasciitis is most common between the ages of 40 and 60.
2. Certain types of exercise: Activities that place a lot of stress on your heel and attached tissue — such as long-distance running, ballet dancing and aerobic dance — can contribute to the onset of plantar fasciitis.
5. Occupations that keep you on your feet: Factory workers, teachers and others who spend most of their work hours walking or standing on hard surfaces can damage the plantar fascia.
Ignoring plantar fasciitis may result in chronic heel pain that hinders your regular activities. Changing the way you walk to relieve plantar fasciitis pain might lead to foot, knee, hip or back problems.
Physiotherapy is proven to decrease pain, aid in recovery, and deal with both acute and chronic issues with the foot.
Physio for Plantar Fasciitis
The Physiotherapist at MyoHealth specialises in Plantar Fasciitis, as this was the subject of her research study while she was working towards her Master's in Physiotherapy. Orthotics can also be useful for improving an alignment of the foot.
Who does Plantar Fasciitis affect?
All foot types are prone to plantar fasciitis, including folks with high arches and those with what we call flat feet. The condition is common in middle-aged and older patients. It is also common in patients who walk or stand on hard surfaces a lot. It disproportionately affects those who are overweight.
What are the types of plantar fasciitis?
There are two types of plantar fasciitis — acute and chronic.
- Acute: The condition can be triggered by a specific injury, this is also called an acute type.
- Chronic: There is also a chronic type also known as the classic case of plantar fasciitis which becomes worse over time.
What are the symptoms of plantar fasciitis?
Common symptoms include mild pain on the bottom of the heel, especially when taking your first steps of the day. Often, symptoms improve only to worsen later in the day. This happens due to over-stressing of the plantar fascia causing a chronic healing response at the attachment to the bone that may remain sore for months.
What causes Plantar fasciitis?
Like many degenerative conditions, it is caused by wear and tear of the fibers of the fascia. One of the most common causes, is a strain to the tissue due to a specific activity combined with improper or inadequate flexibility of the Achilles tendon and the calf muscle. Other causes include a pinched nerve in the heel region, thinning of the heel fat pad, or a stress fracture of the heel bone.
When should you see the physiotherapist?
If the pain was caused by a specific episode or injury and doesn’t improve within a week of resting and icing the area, you should seek help. Since most cases are chronic, and the pain appears gradually and begins to worse over time, when your quality of life begins to suffer despite taking time to rest, stretch and ice the area see a physiotherapist. She will will take a history of your symptoms and your past medical conditions, examine your foot and leg to rule out any other possible causes for the pain.
How long does the treatment take?
The amount of time taken to heal each condition is unique depending on unique and individual factors. Usually within in 4-6 weeks time, measurable result in terms of reduction of pain and general uneasiness can be observed.