Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Spur

One of the most common foot problems that may occur to many of us or already have is Plantar Fasciitis. The hallmark symptom of Plantar Fasciitis is pain upon rising first thing in the morning.  After walking around for a few minutes the pain begins to subside. If you sit down for a few minutes, and when you stand again the pain returns. This pain is usually located on the inside of the foot about one-third of the way from the heel to the toes. Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammation of a band of tissue known as the plantar fascia. This is a flat wide band of tissue which starts from the heel bone up through the arch to the ball of the foot.  Its function is to help support the arch when the arch begins to collapse, more than it should, due to Pronation or flatting out of the foot, this puts excessive pressure on this fibrous connective band (plantar fascia).  It begins to pull in the area that the plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone.  This band can begin to pull away from the heel bone, and an inflammatory response sets up, and the pain begins. If this continues the body will react to this as a small fracture, and begin to lay down calcium in an effort to repair the area. As this process continues, a heel spur may form. Normally the spur itself does not hurt, but the pull of the plantar fascia and the inflammation caused by this process produce the pain. Plantar Fasciitis can become very painful, and in some cases almost crippling.

How can PodSoles Orthotics help?

PodSoles Orthotics, in most cases, can be a very effective treatment for this problem.  They work by balancing up the foot biomechanically and help decrease the Pronation, or flattening of the arch.  This is done by bringing the mid-foot and ankle to its neutral position.  This is where the joints all fit together best.  When the foot is in a neutral position, it becomes more rigid, and the arch does not collapse. Our high-arched firm orthotics are specifically designed to prevent arch from collapsing due to body weight and force. When the foot excessively pronates, the joints are no longer in this locked or rigid position.  As the arch collapses the plantar fascia is stretched, and the problem of plantar fasciitis can begin.

Treatments for Heel pain, Heel Spur, Plantar Fascitis

Activity should be limited or reduced such as running, extra walkings and any high impact activities. If you want to do exercises outside your daily routine, then we suggest swimming or cycling (with proper cycling shoes) as these are unlikely to aggravate the injured site.

Ice will help reduce inflammation and swelling in the area and will also help to reduce pain involved in the injury. Ice is best applied with rolling a frozen water bottle under the arch. Ice should be applied for 10-15 minutes 3 times per day. Ice should also be applied following activity.

benefits of frozen water bottle rolling for plantar fasciitis

Will also help reduce the pain and inflammation associated with the injury and will speed up recovery.  Anti-inflammatory medication can be purchased over the counter from your chemist (Neurofen). Please seek your medical practitioner before taking over the counter medication.

Helps to rest the injured site without limiting your activity.  The low-dye strapping method is also used to temporarily correct any mechanical abnormality in foot function.  If strapping has reduced the amount of heel pain then an orthotic can be used as a permanent measure.  Strapping is best applied by an experienced podiatrist.

Stretching of the calf muscle group helps to relieve the tension on the plantar fascia in walking and at rest by allowing the foot to function properly.

calf stretches for plantar fasciitis

Used when there is a mechanical deformity in the bony structure of the foot (usually rolling in). PodSoles Orthotics balance the foot which allows it to function more efficiently which relieves the strain on the plantar fascia.

best Arch support for plantar fasciitis

Good supportive shoes are essential to control foot mechanics and unload the plantar fascia. We highly recommend purchasing a good pair of runners or walking shoes (Brands: Asics, New Balance or Brooks). Good supportive footwear and good orthotics go well together like cheese and crackers. Click here to read our Footwear Guide.

Usually used in long-standing cases of heel pain that have responded poorly to the above treatments

Surgery is used when all of the above treatments have failed to relieve pain in the heel.  This usually involves removing the plantar fascia from the heel bone.