If your first steps each day involve throbbing foot pain near your heel, you could be one of the many people in the US who have plantar fasciitis. Although symptoms of this inflammatory condition tend to be the worst upon waking, they can also flare up after standing up, sitting for lengthy periods of time, and after exercise.
In one study, nearly 54 percent of participants with plantar fasciitis said the pain at least moderately interfered with their normal work activities. One-third of participants reported severe or extreme interference. Fortunately, early diagnosis and treatment can greatly reduce your symptoms, potentially for good.
If you think you may have plantar fasciitis, contact our office to schedule an appointment or contact us online. Dr. Francine Rhinehart and our team would love to help you find your way back to less painful living.
Plantar fasciitis happens when inflammation develops in your plantar fascia. This band of tissue stretches from your heels to your toes on the bottom of your feet, helping your feet stay stable and comfortable throughout each day. When it’s overstressed, your plantar fascia can develop small tears. These tears can trigger inflammation, leading to plantar fasciitis.
While most anyone can develop plantar fasciitis, numerous factors increase your risk, including:
Once you’ve been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis through an exam and possibly imaging tests, treatment will likely start with conservative measures, such as rest, anti-inflammatory medications, changes in your footwear, and stretching exercises you can do at home. Some people also benefit from night splints, which help keep your feet in a healthy position while you sleep. Physical therapy and custom orthotics may also help.
While pretty rare, severe cases of plantar fasciitis for which gentler measures fail to help may require surgery. Regardless, what you don’t want to do is attempt to “grin and bear” your plantar fasciitis symptoms. Left unmanaged, plantar fasciitis can lead to chronic pain and problems in your knees, hips, or back, all of which can greatly impact your overall quality of life.
Learn much more about plantar fasciitis and whether you may be a good candidate for particular treatments by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Rhinehart today.