How to Cure Plantar Fasciitis

How to Cure Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis is a disorder which causes pain in your heels and bottom of the feet. The condition is found to be common among middle-aged people but could happen to anyone. The number of people unaware about this condition is surprisingly high. Due to this, those who experience this medical condition suffer for longer periods than they need to.

How is it caused?

The exact causes of this problem haven’t yet been discovered. But what happens is that the repetitive tearing of your plantar fascia causes uncomfortable pain.

The thick tissue that connects the heel to the toes and acts as a shock absorber and supporting mechanism is called plantar fascia. This tissue can be damaged due to too much strain, leading to it over-stretching. Standing or walking for prolonged periods of time as well as sports and workouts that puts intense pressure on your heels, and ageing are some of the conditions that may cause this particular disorder.

Prevention Methods

Prevention is better than a cure. There are various methods that could help you protect yourself from experiencing plantar fasciitis and minimize the risk of worsening the problem.

  • Taking care of your feet is a must, even if you aren’t experiencing any difficulties right now. Only wear shoes with good arch support and heel cushioning, especially while working out, running, dancing, and so on. Throw away your cheap sneakers and try a branded pair to feel the difference in comfort (if you can afford it, of course!)
  • If your job description requires for you to stand for long periods, wear thick rubber soles to reduce the stress on your feet
  • Staying fit will also help reduce the strain on your feet. Make an effort to build an exercise routine and maintain an average weight based on your height
  • If you’re a runner, make sure you also play other sports that don’t put any pressure on your heels
  • Walking barefoot or in slippers is not healthy for your heels, so put on supportive shoes the moment you get out of bed

Treatment

If you were too late to read the preventing methods and already suffer from this disorder, you will need to focus on treatment techniques. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of possible treatments for plantar fasciitis: Non-Surgical and Surgical.

Non-Surgical treatments include methods which do not involve any operating, although a doctor might be involved to guide you with techniques to take proper care of your feet.

Non-surgical are initial treatments which are done within the first 6 – 12 months of having suffered from the disorder. Non-surgical treatment methods include:

  • Rest is the first step to any treatment. Getting an adequate amount of rest will increase blood flow and help to repair the ruptured fascia faster
  • Using an icepack on the bottom of your feet will also provide comfort and aid in recovery. It is great for relieving pain
  • Try rubbing a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as ibuprofen (advil or mortin) or naproxen (Aleve). These drugs are available in both pills and cream, allowing you to rub them over the sore area

These are the basic methods that should get you better within a few weeks. Although you will feel less pain, to completely cure the problem, it might take a few months to a year. If you do not feel any change regarding pain and discomfort, your doctor will advise you on the following methods:

  • Shoe inserts or Orthotics come in various sizes, and these devices are supposed to provide you with added comfort. You can have your doctor prescribe you custom-made orthotics or shoe inserts. These custom-made devices will fit you better since it will be based on the measurement of your foot, and will control pain better than any random inserts
  • Another handy item to help you with treatment are night splints. A night splint holds the foot with the toes pointed up, so that your foot makes an angle of 90 degrees with the ankle. This constant position provides a gentle stretch to the plantar fascia, thus aiding treatment
  • A walking cast is one of the least-favored options as a treatment method for plantar fasciitis. A cast is also more expensive than other non-surgical treatments. Applying the cast on your lower leg will provide constant support and force you to rest your foot. This method does aid in the treatment; however, you will need some rehabilitation to adjust with your range of motion and gain back your strength
  • Stretching your Achilles tendon and plantar fascia ligament is just as vital a cure for this disorder. Professional physical therapy instructions will make sure you are stretching your affected parts enough

Last-measure treatments (should the conditions get worse)

If you have tried every possible non-surgical treatment, there is a slight chance that they have not been working for you even after a good few weeks. In such cases, doctors might suggest corticosteroid shots. These shots can prove useful as they help to relieve pain. Nevertheless, they might not work for everyone as this relief is often short term and taking steroid injections repeatedly can further damage the heel pad and the plantar fascia ligament.

Surgical treatment is the absolute last-measure of treatment for those who fail to improve despite trying all kinds of non-surgical treatment methods. Statistics show that 95 out of 100 people recover through non-surgical treatments, while only the 5 out of 100 require surgical treatment. Surgery is only for those who do not show any improvements in 6 to 12 months of having tried other recovery methods.

Surgery is called plantar fascia release surgery. The operation involves releasing the tension and relieving the inflammation of the fascia tissue by cutting a part of the plantar fascia.

Preventing recurring injury

Plantar fasciitis is one medical condition that might reoccur at any moment. If you put too much pressure on your heels or start excessively working out, the pain might be back as the ligament won’t be able to withstand the strain. Make sure you keep the prevention methods in mind. The more careful you are, the healthier and happier you are too!

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