What is plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of pain in the bottom of the heel, the arch or both areas. The plantar fascia is a thick, fibrous, ligament Like muscle on the bottom of the foot. It is attached to the heel, runs forward along the foot and attaches again at the ball of the foot.
When the plantar fascia becomes irritated and swollen, the condition is called plantar fasciitis.
What causes plantar fasciitis?
With every step we take, our body weight comes to rest first on the heel and then gradually over the length of the foot. As the foot begins to bear weight, it flattens. This puts pressure on the plantar fascia, which has very little stretch. As we walk, the plantar fascia pulls on its attachment at the heel.
If the foot is properly aligned, this pull causes no problems.
Plantar fasciitis can be caused by:
A lack of arch support.
A sudden injury.
A tendency to roll your feet one way or another.
An increase in activities such as running, basketball, tennis, soccer or gymnastics that involve repetitive pounding of foot.
Doing a lot of walking barefooted.
Having one leg that is shorter than the other.
Poor flexibility in the calf muscle.
Poor training for physical activities.
Standing too long.
Wearing shoes that don't bend easily under the ball of the foot.
Wearing the wrong shoes
It's not always possible to identify the cause.
What are the symptoms of plantar fasciitis?
When you have plantar fasciitis, you usually feel pain in the bottom of the heel or the arch of the foot. Some people describe the pain as feeling like a bruise or an ache. The pain tends to gradually go away once you begin walking around. With continued walking, the pain may return, but usually goes away after rest. If the swollen plantar fascia irritated a nerve in the foot, pain may radiate into the ankle, but sometimes movements can make it feel worse.
How is plantar fasciitis treated?
Depending on the individual, different treatments may be more effective than others. Treatment include:
Rest. It can help to do weight-bearing exercise that involves running and jumping. Sitting or lying down and raising your feet can also reduce swelling.
Applying ice. Using ice packs to cool (not freeze) your foot helps reduce pain and swelling. The ice should be used on heels and arches (not toes) for about 20 minutes three times a day. If you have diabetes or poor circulation, you should discuss this with your doctor first.
Heel cushions. These off-the-shelf devices go inside your shoes.
Splinting your foot at night.
Avoid going barefoot.
Stretching your foot.
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of pain in the bottom of the heel, the arch or both areas. The condition comes on with inflammation of the plantar fascia, a ligament like band on the bottom of the foot.
It's not always possible to know which of the numerous causes of plantar fasciitis is at work.
Rest, ice and heel cushions are some ways to treat the condition.
A good exercise to help the condition is to stretch out your legs and pull Back your toes, does this for about 10/20 minutes everyday.
Freeze a bottle of water and run it up and down your feet for about 20 minutes on each foot.
Here are some good exercises