What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is the medical term for a common painful condition affecting the connective tissue that stretches between the heel and the middle of the foot. The plantar fascia is a tough and flexible band of tissue that runs under the sole of the foot. It connects the heel bone with the bones of the foot, and acts as a shock absorber. Micro damage can occur over months or years and can cause the plantar fascia to thicken and tighten. This can encourage new blood vessels and nerve endings to grow, resulting in heel pain and an increase in sensitivity.
Those with plantar fasciitis will experience pain in the bottom of the foot. The pain is usually more noticeable at the centre or front of the heel. It is often worse when taking the first step after waking in the morning or after a period of inactivity. It can also occur after exercising especially in non-supportive shoes.
WHAT CAUSES PLANTAR FASCIITIS?
A number of factors can contribute to plantar fasciitis pain, including:
- taking up a new kind of exercise or suddenly increasing exercise
- standing on your feet for long periods of time
- medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus
- wearing flat-soled shoes such as sandals or flip flops
- wearing high-heeled shoes, and switching to flat shoes
- having very high arches or flat feet
- being overweight or obese
- a lack of ankle movement
OUR APPROACH TO TREATING PLANTAR FASCIITIS AT THE FORGE CLINIC
If you have think you have plantar fasciitis you may well benefit from the help of a qualified physiotherapist, osteopath or sports injury therapist.
Our physiotherapists, osteopaths and sports injury therapists at our clinic in Richmond have extensive experience at diagnosing and treating plantar fasciitis. They will aim to reduce the pain, promote healing and prevent symptoms returning in the future.
Following a detailed assessment of your feet and accurate diagnosis, treatment for plantar fasciitis usually involves the following techniques:
- Resting the affected foot and avoiding long walks and standing for long periods
- Exercising to improve the calf muscles and plantar fascia to relieve pain and improve flexibility in the affected foot – download foot pain exercise leaflet here
- Relieving pain using an icepack on the affected heel and taking painkillers.
Other tailored treatment options may include:
- Manual therapy techniques such as massage, manipulation and stretching to reduce pain and stiffness
- It may be helpful to correct posture and movement with gait analysis and orthotics
- Footwear advice to ensure shoes cushion the heels and support the arches of the feet
- Strapping to relieve pressure on the heel and support the foot
The treatment of plantar fasciitis is a slow process and around four out of five cases of heel pain resolve within a year. In some more extreme cases, patients may need to have corticosteroid injections, shockwave therapy and perhaps surgery.
TREAT YOUR FOOT PAIN NOW AT THE FORGE CLINIC, RICHMOND
If you are looking for treatment for plantar fasciitis or other heel pain or foot pain and live in Richmond or the surrounding area in south west London, please call 020 8332 6184, book online or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.