Treating Plantar Fasciitis

So you have been dealing with foot pain and have probably asked yourself “What is causing this pain?”

What is the plantar fascia?

Fascia is a type of connective tissue that surrounds and separates muscles and often adds to stability.

Your plantar fascia is located on the bottom of your foot and stretches from your heel to your toes, helping form the arch of your foot.

How do I know if I have plantar fasciitis?

Most individuals suffering from plantar fasciitis experience heel pain in the morning or after long bouts of inactivity. Often times this can affect the way these individuals walk and can lead to their feet aching at the end of the day.

One way to test if you have plantar fasciitis is to pull back on your big toe while seated. If the pain gets worse than this may indicate that you have plantar fasciitis.

What causes Plantar Fasciitis? 

Plantar Fasciitis is usually a degenerative process that happens over time. Over time your plantar fascia undergoes small injuries, once these small injuries get to a certain point it can start to cause pain.
Some contributing factors can be…

  • Improper footwear
  • Tight calf muscles
  • Lower body weakness

How can I avoid making it worse? 

One of the worse things to do is to wait to get this condition addressed as it will likely get worse or keeping coming back after it starts to feel slightly better.

You can unload the plantar fascia by getting properly fitted for orthotics. If you wear heels, avoiding this can help prevent loading the plantar fascia as well.

What does treatment look like?

Many of the patients we see typically undergo cortisone injections for treatment. Although this treatment can decrease pain at times, it fails to address that causes of plantar fasciitis. Many of these patients end up having their pain not only come back but have it come back worse as well.

The ideal treatment for plantar fasciitis would achieve the following to decrease pain and give long-lasting results:

  1. Decrease the load of the plantar fascia (Orthotics)
  2. Fix the degeneration that has occurred in the fascia (Platelet Rich Plasma)
  3. Address what caused the plantar fasciitis to occur in the first place (Physical Therapy)

How well does this treatment plan work?  

We have found that our approach listed above is superior to cortisone injections in decreasing pain and keeping the pain away for a longer period of time.

Our success rate with this approach is just shy of 100%.

How can I avoid this happening to me?  

For those individuals not experiencing pain a good strength and flexibility program for your lower body can go a long way. This should include…

  1. Calf stretches
  2. Heel raises
  3. Heel walks
  4. Single leg balancing
  5. Step Ups
  6. Squats