Intense, sustained, incapacitating pain, especially in the heel of the foot: this is what most people with plantar fasciitis experience.
More specifically, plantar fasciitis presents as inflammation of the fibrous ligament, which is what supports and stabilizes the arch of the foot.
Because of the considerable number of nerve endings involved, the pain associated with inflammation can be considerable. Fortunately, there are treatments that help.
In this article, we’ll look at the causes and symptoms of plantar fasciitis, along with treatments that are effective in relieving pain, reducing inflammation, and preventing flare-ups from recurring.
What causes plantar fasciitis?
Many of us are likely to suffer from plantar fasciitis at some point in our lives: a large percentage of the population has risks and behaviors that are related to developing this inflammatory condition.
It is the overuse of the plantar fascia that causes the inflammation to develop that is the source of the discomfort. In addition, there are certain factors that can predispose to this condition, including:
- Flat feet or very high arches
- Wearing unsuitable shoes
- Playing sports that involve a lot of running (jogging, soccer, tennis, etc.)
- Untreated or inadequately treated heel spurs
- Excess weight, or significant weight gain over a short period of time
What are the symptoms?
The main symptom of plantar fasciitis is sharp stabbing pain under the heel; for some people, the pain extends to the arch of the foot.
Secondary symptoms can include pain in the Achilles tendon, a permanent burning sensation under the foot, or tingling throughout the sole of the foot.
Pain and other symptoms are generally most severe first thing in the morning, or after a long period of inactivity. For most people who suffer from plantar fasciitis, the discomfort eases or even disappears after a few minutes. In athletes, the pain is usually worse after intense physical activity rather than during exercise.
How to treat plantar fasciitis
If you think you may have plantar fasciitis, there are fortunately a number of treatment options available.
Seeing a specialist, like one of the orthotists at the Médicus clinic near you, is an excellent first step towards recovery. An orthotist can evaluate whether your pain is in fact caused by plantar fasciitis, and can then propose a treatment plan that is tailored to your needs.
From orthopedic shoes to orthotics; from preventive advice to additional care: your orthotist-prosthetist will guide you to a more rapid and effective recovery.
Foot orthotics: continuous support
The first step to eliminating foot pain is to have a knowledgeable professional do a biomechanical examination of your feet. It allows to target the specific causes of inflammation in the fascia. Based on the results of this analysis, a number of targeted treatment options are presented.
State-of-the-art custom orthotics are molded to match the shape of your foot exactly, so they play an undeniable role in the treatment of plantar fasciitis by reducing tension, pain, and pressure.
What’s more, prescribing orthotics early may mean avoiding the need for medications (like anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids) and cortisone injections.
Orthopedic shoes: the importance of having good ones
Whether orthotics or orthopedic shoes, the ultimate goal is the same: to reduce pain and break the cycle of inflammation, so that those struggling with plantar fasciitis can get back to normal.
Orthotics fit into certain types of shoes, while orthopedic shoes have an integrated insole, which is more practical for some clients. At Médicus, we offer a wide variety of brands and styles of orthopedic shoes.