Plantar Fasciitis is a result of inflammation of the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a thick, non-elastic band of fibrous tissue that runs from the balls of your feet (metatarsal heads) and attaches to your heel. It is an overuse injury that is usually characterized by acute heel pain first thing in the morning or after rest.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when stress is applied to the plantar fascia causing it to pull away from the insertion point (the heel). This can cause small tears to the fascia resulting in inflammation and pain. There are a variety of factors that can cause stress to the fascia such as flat arches (overpronation), tight calf muscles, poor footwear, overuse, and sudden increase in weight.
Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include a sharp pain in the heel that can travel towards the arch of the foot. Pain persists with every step of the foot. As the fascia is pulled away from the heel bone, the body reacts by filling in the space with new bone, which can lead to a heel spur. A heel spur can be detected via x-ray and can be treated in the same way as plantar fasciitis.
Many of the treatment options for plantar fasciitis consist of conservative therapy. Short-term treatment includes stretching and icing of the fascia, proper footwear, padding and strapping, and oral ibuprofen or any other anti-inflammatory. If none of these treatment options are working, physical therapy can be implemented. Finally for a long-term treatment and preventative solution, orthotics can be prescribed. Orthotics will help to re-create the arch and reduce stress on the fascia. Surgical options are available, however not very common.
For more information or to arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot & Orthotics at 905-878-6479 in Milton. You can also visit us at www.ontariofoot.ca.