Don’t let heel pain keep you off your feet
Are you experiencing heel pain that makes it difficult to do your job or doesn’t allow you to participate in workouts?
One of the most common causes of heel pain is plantar fasciitis. So, what is plantar fasciitis? The plantar fascia is a thick tissue attaching to your heel bone, and runs along the bottom of your foot to your toes. Plantar fasciitis occurs when that tissue gets inflamed, causing pain along the bottom of the foot.
The most common symptom of plantar fasciitis is intense heel pain with the first couple of steps in the morning when you get out of bed. You can also experience a dull ache in the heel with prolonged standing, walking, or running.
Treatment options include purchasing a night splint that provides a stretch to the calf and plantar fascia, and arch supports for your shoes to provide better cushion. Custom orthotics can be designed for your foot structure, and work well for individuals with low or high arches. Proper shoe wear based on your foot structure is also important.
There are different types of stretches and strengthening exercises for your plantar fascia and calf muscles. A physical therapist can help you learn the appropriate exercises and educate you on modifying activities that may be aggravating your condition. They can also provide different modalities such as ultrasound in order to promote healing and decrease inflammation.
Plantar fasciitis typically resolves with conservative measures and rarely requires surgery. Unfortunately, in moderate to severe cases it may take up to 12-18 months for it to resolve.
If you start to experience heel pain see your doctor ASAP so you can receive appropriate treatment and possibly a referral to a physical therapist. Stay active - don’t let heel pain keep you off your feet!
About The Author:
Erin Bertani specializes in orthopedic rehabilitation and sports medicine. She has more than eight years of orthopedic experience and is a certified strength and conditioning specialist. Erin focuses on functional rehabilitation incorporating a variety of therapeutic exercises and manual therapies with the goal of returning patients to their active and independent lifestyles.