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Plantar Fasciitis: Pain in the Foot

Plantar Fasciitis is a common issue that 1 in 10 people will experience during their lifetime. So, if you have been experiencing foot pain, this common culprit may be to blame. 

Learn more about plantar fasciitis pain, causes, treatment, and more.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

A thick band of tissue called the plantar fascia connects your heel bone to the toes. When this band of tissue becomes inflamed, it can cause stabbing pain that ranges in severity.

Many doctors once believed that heel spurs caused plantar fasciitis pain. It is now known, however, that heel spurs result from this condition.

Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis symptoms are typically unmistakable. The pain is usually located in the heel and is at its worst during your first steps in the morning. The pain may go away throughout the day but come back after you have been on your feet for an extended period.

Causes of Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia supports the arch of your foot and absorbs shock when you walk or run. When you are on your feet, you can get tiny tears in the tissue, which irritates it and causes plantar fasciitis.

Although anyone can get plantar fasciitis, a few things put you more at risk. Here are a few risk factors and causes of foot pain from plantar fasciitis.

Age

Plantar fasciitis is most common in people between 40 and 60 years old. This is due to their plantar fascia wearing down over time.

Exercise

Exercises such as long-distance running, soccer, and dancing can place extra stress on the foot, causing pain in plantar fasciitis.

Occupation

If you have an occupation where you are on your feet all day, you are more likely to put stress on your feet and therefore experience plantar fasciitis. 

Weight

Those who are obese are more likely to get plantar fasciitis due to the extra weight their feet have to support.

Genetics

Some people get lucky with genetics. If you have naturally flat feet or high arches, you may be more likely to experience pain from plantar fasciitis.  

Plantar Fasciitis Medical Treatment Options

There are many different options when it comes to treating plantar fasciitis pain. Some are stronger than others. Consult your doctor to see which treatment option is right for you.

Here are just a few of the most common medical treatment options.

Medication

For pain that can be managed easily, you may be advised to take over-the-counter pain medication such as Advil or Aleve. This can help to reduce inflammation and therefore reduce your pain.

Therapy

Some people choose to get a physical therapist to help with the pain. A physical therapist can teach you exercises to stretch your legs and plantar fascia that will relieve some of your pain.

Some physical therapists may prescribe night splints, walking boots, or orthotics. These are all forms of support that can hold your foot in place and relieve some of the stress you put on it.

Surgery

For more severe cases of plantar fasciitis, your doctor may recommend surgical treatment. Typical forms of surgical treatment for plantar fasciitis include steroid injections, shock wave therapy, and in rare cases, invasive surgery.

Plantar Fasciitis Lifestyle Treatment Options

Before turning to medical treatments, many people try to eliminate the pain alone. A few small changes can go a long way regarding plantar fasciitis.

You can do this daily to reduce pain from plantar fasciitis.

Switch Up Your Exercise

If your exercise of choice is hard on your feet, it may be time to switch it up for a while. Try something less impactful such as swimming, rowing, or biking. If you must continue your current exercise, choose supportive footwear.

Rest and Recover

Taking adequate time to rest and recover is one of the best ways to relieve pain. Do specific exercises to stretch the arch of your foot and take some pressure off your heels. You can also reduce inflammation by holding an ice pack to your feet for 15 minutes.

Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Because extra weight can put more stress on your feet, reducing your body weight can help significantly. If you are overweight, you may want to consider a few small lifestyle changes to lose weight and take some stress off of your feet.

Shoes to Help Manage Plantar Fasciitis Pain

One of the best ways to combat pain is to select the right shoes. Plantar fasciitis shoes offer support that will give you relief from your stubborn foot pain.

If you are on your feet all day, you should always wear supportive shoes. Choose a shoe with good arch support, extra cushioning, and a roomy toe box.

Shoes such as Alegria are great for those who stand on their feet all day in occupations such as teaching and nursing. Alegria is made explicitly for women, but similar brands exist for men.

If your plantar fasciitis pain comes mostly from exercise, you should get a supportive shoe for these purposes. Choose a tennis shoe with extra stability and cushioning to support you on rough surfaces. 

HOKA ONE ONE is an excellent brand for sports lovers with plantar fasciitis pain. They have a rocker sole and a built-in orthotic footbed that will help to support you through any activity.

Take Control of Your Pain Today

Plantar fasciitis pain doesn’t have to ruin your life. With the proper tips and tools, you can reduce pain and return to your everyday life.

If you want to buy footwear to support your feet, then feel free to check out our plantar fasciitis footwear section.

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