What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is pain under the heel. The plantar fascia is a thick fibrous band of connective tissue which runs from the underneath of your heel bone and extends along the foot towards your toes. It provides stability to your foot and limits the flattening of the arch. The pain itself is under the heel and it can often feel like you have a stone bruise under your foot. Most people do not remember how or when the pain started and notice it just getting worse. Pain is typically worse in the morning and warms up during the day. The pain is thought to be caused by wear and tear of the insertion of the fascia onto the heel over time.

What causes it and how is it treated?

Plantar fasciitis can come on due to a variety of reasons including:

  • Activity – lots of running and having tight calf muscles leave the plantar fascia susceptible to overload
  • Being over weight
  • Diabetes
  • Incorrect footwear for the activity you are doing

Treatment initially includes trying to settle the symptoms. This may include soft tissue release of the calf and foot muscles, icing and resting from particularly aggravating activity. Once the pain is under control, exercises are introduced to strengthen the intrinsic foot muscles that help to support the foot and ankle. Referral to a Podiatrist may be required if orthotics are recommended for treatment. Gradual return to sport can be introduced once the strength, mobility and control of the foot are optimal.

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If you are struggling with heel pain, come and see Ergoworks Physiotherapy today for effective treatment.

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