The plantar fascia is a thick section of connective tissue under your foot. It stretches from, and connects, your heel to the ball of your foot, providing support for your foot arch. The plantar fascia also provides stability and shock absorption as we walk, run, climb etc. When the fascia is overloaded due to repetitive strain, it can cause small tears and inflammation within the tissue. Overloading the fascia can occur as a result of poor foot mechanics, repetitive weight-bearing activities, improperly fitting shoes, being overweight, having one leg longer than the other, or calf and foot muscle tightness or weakness. Plantar fasciitis is common and can affect anyone of any age.
With plantar fasciitis, you may have pain under the ball of your foot, your foot arch or at your heel. Characteristically, plantar fasciitis causes pain and tenderness under the foot, which is typically worse when taking your first few steps in the morning or after a period of not walking on your foot. Pain may also be brought on by pulling your ankle upward and bending your toes backwards.
You may have difficulty walking, especially when walking barefoot.
Non-surgical treatment is the first choice of treatment for plantar fasciitis. Physiotherapy is very effective in the treatment of plantar fasciitis. Our treatment will involve advising you on the use of foot orthotics and relative rest from aggravating activities. We will help to reduce your pain and inflammation by applying ice and ultrasound. We will also prescribe specific stretching and strengthening exercises depending on your specific presentation. In some cases where we find that your ankle, foot or toe joints are stiff, we will perform joint mobilisations to improve your mobility. We also use taping, which is very effective in relieving pain and providing foot support.
It is important to note that some people take longer to recover from plantar fasciitis, especially when they do not attend to the problem early on. Contact us as soon as you start to experience foot or heel pain to avoid the struggle.
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