The plantar fascia is a ligament, connecting your heel bone to your toes. Identify when it’s inflamed.
When you take your first step in the morning or after sitting, do you experience foot pain? Does the pain disappear after multiple steps? You may have strained the ligament sustaining your arch — that is, the plantar fascia. Over time, repeated, tiny tears to this ligament can cause pain and swelling known as plantar fasciitis, one of the most prevalent issues plaguing the patients of podiatrists universally. Here’s our breakdown on symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment with Dr. Cox, your foot doctor in Prescott AZ.
● Weight gain
● A sudden increase in exercise
● Wearing shoes that don’t fit well or are worn out
● A flexible, flat foot or high arch
● Calcium deposits in the heel bone, known as a heel or bone spur
● Standing, walking, or running for an extended time, particularly on hard surfaces
● A tight Achilles tendon or calf muscle
● Rolling your foot inward too much
By ignoring the symptoms described above, you may rupture the plantar fascia, which in turn, can cause you to wear a boot and walk on crutches for a few weeks, interrupting your active lifestyle.
● Dr. Cox will examine your feet, asking you to stand and walk.
● Inquire about your health history to better understand the source of your pain.
● Talk to you about your symptoms, including the location of the pain and at what time of day it occurs.
● If you’re quite active, he may ask you what type of physical activity you frequent most — running to weightlifting, etc.
Your foot pain may have developed from a stress fracture. In that case, Dr. Cox will take an X-ray of your foot, discerning whether or not this is the issue.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any exercises that will entirely cure plantar fasciitis. What’s more is that each person’s body reacts differently to treatment — some methods may work while others will not. That’s why it’s ever so crucial to work closely with your foot doctor in Prescott AZ to develop the best healing option for you.
For the time being, though, there are stretches you can implement to lessen the pain, according to Dr. Marlene Reid of the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA), an organization we highly respect:
● Cross your right foot over your left knee, grabbing the toes with your right hand.
● Pull your toes toward your right knee, holding the stretch for three seconds.
● Release it, and pull your right foot away from your right knee.
● Repeat this five times, alternating between left and right feet.
Picking out the right shoe for your feet’s special needs is crucial in avoiding future foot problems. For runners who are searching for new shoes, check out our recent post on locating the best running shoes for you.
● Press on the back of your shoe for heel stability. If it caves in at first touch, they won’t support you when it’s most necessary.
● If the heel appears unstable, invest in a new pair of shoes or buy a heel cup insert from your local drug store.
● According to Fitness Magazine, 14 percent of people polled in a study that measured the effectiveness of shoe fit and support said that this option worked best in helping cure their plantar fasciitis.