Your foot is a complex organ made up of bones, tendon, and a unique fibrous tissue known as the "Fascia". When overly strained, tiny tears can appear in this band of tissue, causing intense pain. When this happens it is called plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis can affect anyone but women - especially those who wear high heels regularly - those suffering from obesity, and people with abnormal gaits tend to suffer the most.
How to Deal with Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis can result in debilitating pain in your heels. The pain is often worse in the mornings when you first get up, but standing for long periods of time can also trigger it.
If you are currently suffering from plantar fasciitis, you are probably wondering just one thing: what can you do to stop it?
Dealing with plantar fasciitis can be painful, but there are plenty of things you can do to ease your heels and give you immediate relief from the discomfort…
How to Heal Plantar Fasciitis
In order for your fascia to be able to heal, you need to rest your feet. If you are a busy mom on the go, or the CEO of a business, this might not be news you want to hear.
The more you use your feet, especially if you are wearing high heels, the longer it will take to heal. You may even make the problem worse by injuring the fascia farther if you don't slow down and take it easy.
If you can't rest entirely, you can help ease the pain by opting for flats and choosing shoes with excellent supports in them. Do this for both your feet, even if the problem is only occurring in one foot.
How to Treat Plantar Fasciitis
If resting your feet and wearing arch supports alone are not enough, there are a few other supportive things you can do before turning towards more invasive options…
An over the counter NSAID can reduce inflammation and help ease your pain, and stretching your fascia through exercises and massage can sometimes help bring your pain under control.
If these home treatments don't help, you may need to see a doctor for more serious treatments. A doctor can inject your foot with corticosteroids to try and help ease the pain while the fascia heals. The shots themselves don't heal the injury, but they may make it easier for you to do stretches and other therapies that could be painful without it.
Surgery may be recommended if plantar fasciitis drags on for many months, but it isn't generally recommended anymore. It was once thought that bone spurs were the cause of plantar fasciitis, but recent information has shown they have little or no bearing on your foot pain.
How to Tape Foot for Plantar Fasciitis
You can give your fascia a chance to rest even when you are up and about through therapeutic taping of the foot.
Taping is commonly carried out by athletes who suffer from plantar fasciitis as a method of preventing the fascia from tearing more while they are active.
You can get the same benefits by using athletic or kinesiology tape to wrap the heel and the length of the foot…
Start out by wrapping the ball of your foot once with the tape. This will give your tape an anchor. From there, wrap the tape around the back of your foot, which will be your next anchor point. Then, begin wrapping around the foot in a criss-cross pattern. It is important that the tape is not too tight in order to prevent the tape from restricting blood flow.
Taping your foot can help ease some of the pain of plantar fasciitis and it may help to stretch the fascia while you are at rest for better comfort while it heals.
Read more : How to Get Nice Soft Feet
How to Stretch for Plantar Fasciitis
Tight calf muscles can be a root cause of your plantar fasciitis.
Stretching your tight leg muscles can be a great method of easing your heel pain, and may help you reduce future problems with your fascia. Stretches that might help include:
- Calf Stretches
Standing a few feet away from a wall, you can stretch the calf muscles by using the wall to support yourself as you put one foot in front of the other and stretch the calves slowly. You'll want to approximate a lunge, but without the speed and force of a high energy workout.
- Rolling Stretches
Roll a ball around with your foot to stretch your fascia. Frozen water bottles and cold soda cans feel particularly good under your foot, and can calm inflammation at the same time for an added bonus.
- Toe Stretches
Grab your toes and gently pull them upwards. This is another great way of stretching your fascia. Again, do this gently if you have an injury
How to Massage Plantar Fasciitis
Massage is another great option to help relax your painful plantar fasciitis. You can massage your own feet, or have a massage therapist work on them in order to get the maximum benefit.
Start out with downward strokes from the ankles to the toes on the top of the foot. Try to make your strokes long, smooth, and firm. Repeat this a dozen or so times before moving on to the metatarsal area. (These are the longer bones in your foot, essentially from the front of your arch to the balls of your feet.) Lightly rub this area and attempt to spread the metatarsal bones apart to help and relax this part of your foot.
Massage the under side of the foot with deep pressure from the front of the heel all the way to the toe. This should not be severely painful, so if you feel anything more than mild discomfort, stop this part of the massage.
When you are done with the feet, move on to your calves. You can rub the muscles along your calf to try and work out any kinks or knots you might feel as you go up and down the leg. Working these knots out can help your plantar fascia too, by easing some of the tension placed indirectly on your feet from your legs.
Regular massage may be enough to prevent recurrences of plantar fasciitis, so you may wish to continue massage if this seems to help.
How to Prevent Plantar Fasciitis
Preventing plantar fasciitis may be the best way to handle treatment in the first place. If you have had plantar fasciitis in the past, or have a condition that makes you likely to get plantar fasciitis, you may be wondering how to avoid it.
Wearing properly fitting shoes is probably one of the best places to start in preventing problems with your fascia. Many times the strain we experience in our feet is from shoes that don't give us the support we need. If you are guilty of wearing thin, worn out soles that don't provide proper arch support, you may be at risk for plantar fasciitis. If you wear high heels regularly, especially if you have a job where you are on your feet all day, this could also be a factor.
If you are an athlete, you may also be particularly at risk for plantar fasciitis. Tight calf muscles and improper form while running can cause injuries to your fascia. In order to keep your feet safe, be sure to stretch properly before running, and include your feet in that warm up exercise. After all, they are taking the bulk of the shock from your running. It makes sense to stretch the part of your body that receives the highest impact!
If you are overweight, a gentle, low-impact weight loss program can help ease the pressure on your feet and reduce the chance of plantar fasciitis occurring.
Plantar fasciitis can occur to anyone at any time, but knowing what your potential flare-up could be from and taking steps to remove those problems are your best chances at preventing plantar fasciitis from occurring.
How to Get Rid of Plantar Fasciitis Permanently
In order to say good-bye to painful plantar fasciitis forever, you are going to need to figure out the root cause of your symptoms. This isn't always easy, as many doctors aren't up to date on the latest knowledge about plantar fasciitis, or may not know what your day to day lifestyle looks like.
If the root cause of your plantar fasciitis is poor form while running, or wearing heels, getting rid of the root cause is easy. For other more subtle causes, you may have more difficulty.
If your problem is the structure of the foot, you may be able to gain permanent relief by finding a foot doctor who can make customized shoes to adjust your gait to something easier on your fascia. Until you know for certain what causes it, regular stretching and massage of your fascia can often be enough to soothe your feet into fewer flare-ups.
We very much hope you've found this exploration of plantar fasciitis has been useful and informative.
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