By Rehan Iqbal
Plantar fasciitis is inflammation and irritation of the thick, strong tissue (plantar fascia) in the sole of the foot. This band of tissue connects your heel to your toes. Plantar fasciitis is a painful condition that is typically characterized by a stabbing sensation at the heel of the foot where this flat tendon joins with the calcaneous bone (heel bone). This pain is usually especially noticeable upon arising from bed or when getting up from long periods of sitting. In this article we explore the pain of plantar fasciitis and offer sound advice to help you deal with it. Read on to learn more.
Plantar Fasciitis goes by another nickname “heel spur syndrome”. If you have Plantar Fasciitis, you may feel a stabbing pain in your heels as you walk. The pain can be very overwhelming after spending a lot of time standing or walking. If you have it you may also notice it more first thing in the morning as you get out of bed. The sharp pain you feel upon standing after a period of inactivity is often excruciating.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
How Do You Know You Have Plantar Fasciitis?
In addition to (or instead of) sharp pain at the connecting point of the plantar fascia to the calcaneous bone, you may feel dull pain at this point. You may also experience pain, burning and swelling in the sole of your foot. Your heel may also become swollen.
You will especially notice this when you get out of bed in the morning or after you have been sitting for a long time. Your symptoms may also be aggravated by periods of intense activity.
If you have plantar fasciitis, you may also have heel spurs. These usually develop as a result of the plantar fasciitis and do not actually cause pain, themselves.
What Can You Do About Painful Plantar Fasciitis?
Your doctor may order some diagnostic tests, such as ultrasound scans or X-rays. These will help identify the precise cause of your foot pain. If your doctor finds that you are suffering from plantar fasciitis, he or she may recommend :
Your doctor may also recommend physical therapy and/or tell you to exercise and stretch at home. Exercises may include:
Is Medical Intervention Necessary?
If you follow this non-invasive protocol devotedly for six months or more and do not get relief, your doctor may recommend corticosteroid injections in your heel. This may also be the case if your heel pain is interfering with your ability to perform activities of daily living and/or to work.
If none of these approaches work to relieve your pain, you may be a good candidate for surgery. The most common type is endoscopic plantar fasciotomy, which is an outpatient procedure taking only a few minutes to complete. This surgery is performed under general anesthesia. Recovery time is quick; however, about twenty-five percent of patients receiving this surgery do not experience a relief of pain following the procedure.
Is It Better Just To Go For Surgery First?
Surgery of all sorts runs the risk of complications such as adverse reactions to the anesthesia, scarring, nerve damage, surgical damages that cannot be reversed or healed and simple failure of the procedure. For these reasons, it is always a good idea to try non-invasive healing methods first before seeking surgical remedies.
Natural strengthening and healing of your plantar fascia is preferable to having surgery. Non-invasive treatment essentially involves making positive lifestyle changes and adding beneficial exercise to your everyday routines. This type of healing takes time, patience and commitment, but in the long run, it’s a win-win.