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  • Writer's pictureCrozet Foot and Ankle

Everything You Need to Know About Plantar Fasciitis

Do you have stabbing heel pain? You may have plantar fasciitis!

As one of the most common causes of heel pain, plantar fasciitis occurs when the band of tissue along the bottom of your foot (the plantar fascia) becomes inflamed. These bursts of pain are most common in the morning, after long periods of standing, and after rising from sitting for a long period of time. Pain usually decreases as you move around, but can return post-exercise. Runners and walkers are especially subjected to developing Plantar Fasciitis, but those who wear inadequate shoes and are overweight may also be at risk. This is why it is especially important to exercise with a proper-fitting shoe!

How did this happen?: Causes

To put it most simply...

The plantar fascia's job is to absorb shock and simultaneously supports the arch of your foot. When tension on the band increases too severely, small tears can develop in the fascia. These small tears often occur due to:

  • running

  • over-activity

  • repetitive tearing

  • hard surfaces

However, sometimes the specific cause of plantar fasciitis is unknown.

Risk Factors! You may be at risk of developing plantar fasciitis if you...

  1. getting older. Plantar Fasciitis is most prevalent between the ages of 40 and 60.

  2. participate in specific exercise. Activities that require substantial tension and pressure on your heel leave participants more likely to develop early-onset plantar fasciitis.

  3. struggle with obesity. Increased weight puts increased pressure on your feet, causing strain on your plantar fasciitis.

  4. have flat or high-arched feet. high arched feet or very flat feet can all cause added stress on your plantar fascia.

  5. have a job that requires standing. If you have a job that requires you to stand for long periods of time, or on hard surfaces, the added stress on your feet may cause you to develop plantar fasciitis.

At Home Remedies

Here are some simple lifestyle changes you can make to help your plantar fasciitis!

  1. ICE! Cover an ice pack with a cloth and hold it on your injury for 20 minutes. Repeat 4-5 times a day.

  2. Wear supportive shoes. Try to avoid really flat shoes, super high heels or other shoes that place extra stress on your heel. Instead, wear supportive, shock-absorbing shoes. Never go barefoot if you can help it!

  3. Throw out old athletic shoes...and get some new ones! If you're into running or walking for exercise you should switch out your running shoes every 400-500 miles; any longer and your shoes will no longer be able to properly support and cushion your feet.

  4. Stay active. Maintaining a healthy weight is important in keeping the plantar fascia healthy. Try low-impact exercises, such as yoga, pilates, swimming, rowing, or cycling to keep yourself moving.

  5. Stretch! Gently stretch the arches of your feet, Achilles tendon, and calf muscles.

If you're still experiencing pain, or your pain gets worse, make an appointment with us at the Crozet Foot and Ankle Clinic, for a full evaluation.

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