Plantar Fasciitis : Most common cause of heel pain

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common conditions leading to heel pain. It is commonly seen in people who spend long hours standing. Plantar fascia is a thick fibrous tissue which runs from heel to toes and is responsible in maintaining the arch and overall shape of the foot. Excessive forces on plantar fascia causes micro tears and degeneration which leads to inflammation and pain. Pain is worse early in the morning and after prolonged hours of sitting or standing. Location of pain is usually at the heel but in some cases it can be present at the arch of the foot.

Causes:

  • Jobs involving prolonged standing
  • Weak and tight foot and ankle musculature
  • Stiff ankle joint
  • History of ankle sprain
  • Overweight
  • High arch or flat foot type
  • Improper footwear with reduced support

Treatment options:

Get a proper diagnosis done by a physiotherapist or an orthopedic

  • Conservative treatment
  • Injection treatment (cortisone shot)
  • Shock-wave therapy

Conservative treatment:

  • Stretching exercises for plantar fascia and calf muscles (see pics 1,2,3 below)
  • Ball roll on plantar fascia (see pic 4)
  • Foam rolling on calf and hamstrings to improve flexibility
  • Strengthening exercises of foot and leg to improve shock absorption
  • Icing over the inflamed area
  • Ankle joint mobilization
  • Soft tissue mobilization
  • Wearing proper footwear with good arch support
  • Avoid walking barefoot
  • Use of night splints to keep muscles and fascia in stretched position
  • Tapping helps supporting the foot and reduce strain on Fascia
  • Custom Insoles or orthotic devices to correct foot biomechanics if required

Plantar Fascia stretch

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Pic 1

Calf Stretch

calf-1

Pic 2 – Bend Knee calf (Soleus) stretch

calf-2

Pic 3 -Straight Knee (Gastrocnemius) Stretch

plantar fasciitis

Pic 4 – Ball roll on plantar fascia

 

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