Do you suffer from pain in your heel, particularly when standing or walking and first thing in the morning? If so, there’s a good chance you have a condition called plantar fasciitis. While a common condition of the foot, doctors remind patients not to ignore their symptoms and to get treatment. That said, there are non-surgical, conventional treatment methods available that often help people recover from plantar fasciitis in a few months.
#1) What is Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis is the most common culprit of heel pain. It affects the ligament between your toes and heel bone, called the plantar fascia. This ligament helps to support the arch of your foot, so when it gets irritated, damaged, inflamed, or swollen, it can cause pain in the heel or general bottom area of your foot.
Plantar fasciitis develops when the ligament gets over stretched, which can cause small tears that cause inflammation and discomfort. While you can experience the pain from plantar fasciitis at any time, it usually occurs when you have to stand for long periods of time, are walking, or are participating in other physical activities that require the force of your feet to land on the ground.
#2) What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
There is not a single cause of plantar fasciitis, but rather different situations that lead to the condition. Small tears in the plantar fascia can occur as a result of being obese, from rigorous physical activity, or repetitive walking or standing activities. The way you walk or stand over these prolonged periods of time can also lead to plantar fasciitis. Essentially, anything that puts stress on the feet or heel can cause the condition, along with having flat feet tight tendons or high arches.
#3) Who is Prone to Plantar Fasciitis?
As you might have guessed, individuals who have jobs that require standing and walking for long periods of time and people who are athletic are most prone to developing plantar fasciitis. For example, occupations that requires standing or walking for extended period of time, such as being a security guard, nurse, teacher, or waitress, increase the risk of developing plantar fasciitis. Similarly, runners are especially prone to suffer from plantar fasciitis.
However, there are also some other risk factors to be aware of. For one, if you are an older adult, you are at a higher risk. Plantar fasciitis is more common in adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It often accompanies other age-related conditions, including arthritis and diabetes.
You might also be prone to plantar fasciitis if you wear heels or other types of shoes that don’t support your feet and heels properly, since more stress is put onto the tendons of your heels, leading to inflammation and pain. You are also at a higher risk if you have had any type of cosmetic foot surgery.
If you suspect you have plantar fasciitis, don’t put off getting help. Podiatrists can provide you with a variety of conservative, non-surgical treatment options.