What Is Plantar Fasciitis?
A common cause of heel pain and foot discomfort, plantar fasciitis occurs when the main supporting ligament of the arch becomes damaged and/or strained. There are a multitude of treatments and plenty of specialty care but in all cases it is wise to start with a full assessment and posture analysis to try and discover the underlying cause. Rapid weight gain or weight loss can be a factor as can poor footwear or even the type of flooring you stand on throughout the day. It goes without saying that misalignments of the spine or pelvis can affect the mechanics of walking and lead to strain and inflammation of the feet. Likewise, undiagnosed muscle imbalances lead to postural imbalances and mechanical strain and inflammation.
When these issues are addressed, you can start adding home remedies to speed up the process:
- Supportive Shoes – Purchasing a good pair of everyday shoes and a pair of running shoes for inside the house will help add the needed support for your arches and take the strain off the healing foot. Talk to your chiropractor or massage therapist about how to evaluate the appropriateness of shoes for your foot type.
- Ice – Decreasing the swelling and inflammation along the arch and sole of the foot will allow you to do more through out the day and offer some pain relief. Try drinking 1/4 of a small bottle of water and putting the rest in the freezer. Once frozen, you have a handy cylinder of ice to roll under the sole of the foot.
- Stretching – Taking time to stretch out the foot and calves will remove any residual tension in the area and allow a greater range of motion for the foot. Ask your massage therapist or chiropractor to demonstrate which stretches are appropriate for you.
- Products – Applying castor oil patches at night or a topical anti-inflammatory cream will help make the inflamed tissue pliable and reduce the heel pain. Custom made orthotics from a chiropodist or even good quality off-the-shelf orthotics from a sporting goods store will help support the arch and relieve the strain.
Whatever you do, don’t wait! This condition is not known to go away on its own and the longer it’s there, the longer it takes to treat.