About 15 years ago, I fell down a flight of stairs and broke bones in both my feet. I was in plaster for several weeks, and walking was not easy afterwards. This was due to my feet being weaker, the muscles being underused, and the fact that I was quite overweight.
One of the problems that I experienced during this time was plantar fasciitis. This is a common foot condition caused by overstretching or tearing of the soft tissues on the bottom of your foot.
The pain associated with plantar fasciitis can be severe, and it often affects people’s ability to walk and get around comfortably. Common symptoms include sharp or stabbing pains in the heel and arch of the foot, as well as pain that radiates up into your calf.
Plantar fasciitis is a painful inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is the thick band of tissue that runs arch-to-toe along the bottom of your foot. It usually develops gradually and without warning. Symptoms include pain in your heel or arch when you take steps, especially first thing in the morning or after prolonged periods of rest; heel spurs (prominent bone growths on either side of the plantar fascia); soreness around your toes; and redness and warmth to your feet. Left untreated, plantar fasciitis can worsen over time – leading to chronic pain throughout your day that may even affect how you walk.
What Are The 3 Main Causes of Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis doesn’t just happen. There are usually underlying causes behind it.
Cause 1 – Biomechanical
Plantar fasciitis can be caused by many factors including high arches, flat feet, and tight calf muscles. Because your body may not be perfectly balanced, you may have tight muscles, or for a number of other reasons, your foot may be placed under excess strain.
This can cause damage to the plantar fascia, resulting in the burning or tearing pain associated with plantar fasciitis.
Cause 2 – Excess Weight
If you are overweight, your weight may place excessive strain on the muscles and ligaments in your feet. This is similar to the biomechanical issues and will increase pressure on the plantar fascia, which can lead to inflammation, swelling, and pain.
Plantar fasciitis is also more common among people who are obese but can be treated no matter what your physical condition is.
Cause 3 – Improper Footwear
Plantar fasciitis can develop because of shoes that don’t fit correctly such as tight, narrow toe boxes. While this will not result in injury for everyone who wears the wrong size shoe, it is a significant contributing factor to some people developing plantar fascia injuries.
The pain of plantar fasciitis usually occurs in the morning when you get out of bed, and after sitting for a while. It can be avoided by wearing shoes with extra-wide toe boxes that fit properly.
In most cases, people will wear only one pair of shoes regularly – their everyday shoes. If your favorite pair of shoes is old or ill-fitting, you could be setting yourself up for a problem.
Once you are suffering from plantar fasciitis, changing your shoes can help prevent the problem in the future – but you need to treat the issue you are facing right now.
Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis
Treatment for plantar fasciitis typically starts with avoiding activities that cause or exacerbate the pain. Rest, ice and over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs can help reduce plantar fasciitis symptoms.
However, the activities that caused my pain were necessary – I couldn’t just sit around and avoid walking for the rest of my life! The fastest way to gain relief from plantar fasciitis is to use physical therapy – exercising and moving the foot to relieve the pain. In many cases, relief is felt almost immediately after the first set of exercises.
I had the opportunity to go to physical therapy sessions, but didn’t really have the inclination to go. Looking back, I should have gone, as it would probably have solved a lot of problems!
The faster you cure plantar fasciitis, the faster you’ll be able to return to your normal activities. Once the plantar fascia has healed completely, daily wear and tear on the plantar fascia will no longer be painful. This is why it is so important that plantar fasciitis be treated quickly because waiting too long could lead to the plantar fascia becoming permanently damaged.
In many cases, when plantar fasciitis is treated in conservative ways with physiotherapy and stretching, it usually provides long-term relief. In extreme cases, a plantar fasciotomy may be chosen – plantar fasciotomy surgery is a procedure in which a surgeon cuts the plantar fascia ligament to reduce tension and relieve symptoms. Surgery can be done with an open incision or arthroscopically (through tiny holes). Surgery certainly did not appeal to me!
Plantar fasciitis can be resolved by combining plantar muscle stretches, foot orthotics, heel stretching exercises, and an ankle strengthening program. This is used to resolve plantar fasciitis without plantar fasciotomy plantar fascial release surgery.
Knowing which exercises to perform is only part of the story – being able to perform them correctly is also vitally important. Videos can be used to demonstrate the best way to perform any exercise for plantar fasciitis, and when a program of exercise is followed correctly, it can bring relief to sufferers very quickly. This website – https://plantarfasciitisreliefin7days.com/ – offers such a program.
Stretching exercises to help loosen up the fascia
Stretching exercises can help relieve pain and keep the plantar fascia from tightening up. Here are some exercises you can do to stretch your foot:
- Stand on the edge of a step with two feet for balance, keeping your heels on the floor.
- Hang or stand on your toes at least 10 seconds, then slowly lower yourself back to standing position.
- Toe rolls: Sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor. Roll your foot around, feeling the stretch all along the bottom of your foot, for about 30 seconds. Hold each stretch for 10 to 20 seconds. Repeat this exercise 3 times per day.
Calf stretching exercises are important because they help keep tension off of the plantar fascia. Here are some exercises you can do to stretch your calf:
- Stand facing a wall, with your legs about one hip-width apart. Put the leg to be stretched about a foot from the wall and bend that knee, keeping both feet flat on the ground.
- Press lightly against the wall with the balls of your feet and hold for 10 seconds.
- Hold each stretch for 10 to 20 seconds. Repeat this exercise 3 times per day.
Is there a simple home remedy for plantar fasciitis?
Many people find soaking their feet in a warm bath can relieve the pain. The warmth will soothe the muscles in your feet, allowing blood to flow more easily through them.
Prior to getting into the water, you can add Epsom salts or baking soda for extra relief. Both are exfoliants that help remove dead skin cells and relieve pain. Alternatively, ice packs can also reduce swelling and reduce the intensity of pain. Icing down the heel can help reduce pain and inflammation. Here are some steps to take to ice your foot:
- Take a plastic baggie, fill it with water, and put it in the freezer.
- When it’s frozen solid, hold the ice on your heel for 5 to 10 minutes. Make sure to place a towel between your skin and the ice pack – never apply the ice directly to your body.
- Repeat as needed every 1-2 hours.
The best way to prevent plantar fasciitis is by wearing supportive shoes with proper arch support. It is important to replace shoes regularly because foam cushioning in the heels of some shoes can lose its supportiveness over time.
In extreme cases, you may need to find shoe inserts designed specifically for your feet. Your doctor may also recommend orthotics, which are shoe inserts that support the arch of your foot.
Night splints are another option. Night splints put slight pressure on the plantar fascia at night or while you are lying down. This helps to reduce pain from swelling. The splint will help stretch out and lengthen your plantar fascia as you move around during the day.
Additionally, taking the time for regular stretching of the calves and foot muscles will help reduce tension in the plantar fascia and prevent pain from developing.
Can plantar fasciitis go away on its own?
Yes, it can, although this is rare; as often as not, plantar fasciitis is an ongoing problem requiring treatment. Most importantly, if the pain from plantar fasciitis is ignored or treated incorrectly, it can lead to chronic foot pain and serious complications, such as heel spurs or Achilles tendonitis.
Many people believe that resting and leaving your foot to recover will result in the quickest recovery from plantar fasciitis. Unfortunately, it may lessen the pain in the short term, but the underlying problem will still remain.
What Not To Do With Plantar Fasciitis
If you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis, then you want to do everything possible to speed up the healing process. Unfortunately, there are a few things you should avoid doing in order to make sure your healing goes as smoothly as possible.
- Don’t wear high heels or any other shoes that put strain on the heel area. Yes, while this may be what you’re used to wearing, it can exacerbate your plantar fasciitis and make everything worse in the long run. If there is even the slightest chance of hurting your feet, then try to avoid it. I have a pair of ankle boots with pointy toes and raised heels. They aren’t stilettos, but certainly count as high heels. There. I said it. I’ve been known to wear high heels…
- Don’t do anything that causes strain on the calves such as running, jumping, high impact aerobics and bicycling. While these activities may be what you’re best at doing in order to stay healthy and fit, they can actually cause more harm than good if you have plantar fasciitis. This is because running and jumping put strain on the Achilles and plantar fascia, and can make your condition worse in the long run.
- Don’t stretch without guidance. While you may think that stretching can help loosen your muscles, what it can actually do is increase the amount of pain you feel if you don’t stretch correctly. Find out more about stretching and healing plantar fasciitis here.
- Don’t walk barefoot outside. While most people who suffer from plantar fasciitis need to start out by taking short walks every day, they shouldn’t do this barefoot. It’s what many doctors recommend doing in order to ease yourself into physical activity, but what you should actually do is wear light shoes. This way, if your plantar fascia does become strained again, it won’t be as bad.
What not to do with plantar fasciitis during summer
- Don’t go on concrete all day long, as what you should do is give your feet some time to breathe and rest. Try wearing sandals or going on the grass if possible. This will help relieve some of the stress that’s put on your feet after too much time on concrete and other hard surfaces.
- Don’t go barefoot at night. This is what many people with plantar fasciitis do in order to give their feet a break, but it can actually lead to more problems if you don’t cover your feet before sleeping.
- Don’t do what you are used to doing all the time, as what may feel good now will only make everything worse in the long run. Instead of walking around for two hours after work, try walking for 30 minutes and resting your feet for the remainder of the day.
Plantar Fasciitis pain location
It’s not just your feet! The pain you may experience can lead to the adoption of an unnatural gait when walking. This leads to additional stress on other parts of the body, including the knees, hips, and lower back.
That’s right – plantar fasciitis pain can be felt in the back if it is left untreated.
Does plantar fasciitis hurt in the bottom of your foot?
Plantar fasciitis can cause pain in the bottom of your foot. This pain is usually worse when you first get out of bed in the morning or after you’ve been standing for a long period of time.
The pain is often described as a dull ache or a burning sensation. It may be worse when you walk, run, or climb stairs.
If you think you may be experiencing plantar fasciitis pain and it is negatively affecting your life, it’s important to consult with a medical professional. They will be able to properly diagnose the condition and recommend a treatment plan. Treatment options can vary depending on the severity of the plantar fasciitis but may include stretching exercises, icing the affected area, wearing supportive shoes, and taking over-the-counter pain medication.
Why does my leg hurt?
There are actually a few different things that could be causing your leg pain, and only one of them is plantar fasciitis. Another possibility is shin splints. And even worse, one of these can be triggered by the other. Both of these conditions can be quite painful, so if you think you might have either one, it’s important to see a doctor to get a proper diagnosis.
Shin splints and plantar fasciitis are two different conditions that can cause similar symptoms
Shin splints and plantar fasciitis can both be sources of significant pain in your lower legs, feet, and ankles. With both of these conditions, you may feel tenderness and discomfort in your calves, heels, toes, and the arch of your foot while running or engaging in activities that involve a lot of standing.
However, there are some important distinctions between shin splints and plantar fasciitis that are important to understand. The former is caused by overwork of an inner or outer muscle in the leg that becomes inflamed from repetitive motion, while plantar fasciitis is caused by inflammation of the thick band on tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot or heel. It’s best to schedule an appointment with a professional if you suspect one of these conditions so they can evaluate your symptoms and prescribe the correct treatment approach going forward.
Shin splints are usually caused by overuse, while plantar fasciitis is often caused by tight calf muscles
Shin splints and plantar fasciitis may sound like two exotic kinds of fish, but they’re actually two of the more common injuries that can sideline us during exercise. Knowing what causes them is the key to avoiding them!
Shin splints generally result from repeatedly pushing your body too hard during exercise, which causes chronic pain in the front of your leg below your knee. Plantar fasciitis, on the other hand, can be caused by tight calf muscles leading to painful inflammation in the fascia underneath your foot – a classic overstretch injury.
So if you’re heading out for a run or playing a sport, make sure you take time to warm up or consider stretching beforehand so that you don’t ruin any fun workout plans with an unexpected injury!
Unfortunately, adapting your walking or running style to compensate for the pain that these conditions cause can lead to triggering the other condition. For example, altering your gait to relieve pain from plantar fasciitis can cause the fast onset of shin splints as you’ll be overworking muscles you don’t commonly use.
Shin splints can also be caused by walking too quickly (and aggressively), especially if you are carrying a few extra pounds. I’ve moved past this stage, but boy was it annoying to try and go for a walk and feel like my shins were on fire!
Both conditions can be treated with rest, ice, and stretching exercises
Taking care of your body is really important – both when you’re feeling good and not so great. So if you are dealing with either a muscle strain or tendonitis, the prescription is simple: rest, ice, and stretching exercises. Resting the affected area can help prevent further injury while icing it can reduce swelling, pain, and inflammation. As for stretching exercises – these are key to restoring flexibility to the joint or muscle, increasing blood flow for quicker healing and regeneration of healthy tissue. All three aspects work together to treat the condition quickly and effectively.
If you’re not sure which condition you have, it’s best to see a doctor for a diagnosis
When it comes to figuring out which medical condition you may have, it can be hard to decide on your own. Self-diagnosis without a doctor’s help isn’t the safest way to go—your guess might not be accurate, and let’s not forget the potential for misdiagnosis. The best thing you can do is get expert advice from a qualified doctor. They will evaluate your symptoms and provide an accurate diagnosis so you can get the specific care that your body needs. Don’t worry about wasting time or money – getting the right diagnosis and treatment plan will save you both in the long run.
Once you know which condition you have, follow the appropriate treatment plan to get relief from your symptoms. Knowing what’s causing your symptoms can be half the battle in finding relief. If you’re having any kind of physical or mental health-related issues, it’s important to figure out the diagnosis so you can start the appropriate treatment plan. That could mean consultations with specialists and undergoing tests; but in the end, it’s worth it to figure out what condition you have so you can get started on the road to recovery. With access to a personalized treatment plan tailored for your specific issue, you’ll soon be feeling better and getting back to your normal life.
If you’re dealing with pain in your lower legs, it could be shin splints or plantar fasciitis. These conditions can cause similar symptoms, but they have different causes and require different treatment plans. If you’re not sure which condition you have, the best thing to do is see a doctor for a diagnosis. Once you know which condition you have, follow the appropriate treatment plan to get relief from your symptoms.
As mentioned earlier, exercises for plantar fasciitis can be found here, but consult a medical professional if you’re in any doubt. As for me, I’ll keep walking, as I very rarely struggle with plantar issues these days. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and wide shoes and a sensible diet certainly help!