5 Solutions for Plantar Fasciitis Pain

Do you dread getting out of bed in the morning or standing up after a long meeting, knowing that foot pain won't be far behind? If so, you may suffer from plantar fasciitis. 

Dr. Frank Henry and our highly trained staff here at our clinics in Victoria and Marble Falls, Texas, offer state-of-the-art, innovative treatments for all lower limb ailments. We provide digital X-ray and ultrasound imaging onsite for a timely diagnosis, as well as physical therapy and other procedures to help get you back on your feet as soon as possible. Below, find out more about plantar fasciitis and how it is treated.

Plantar fasciitis explained

Our muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons are held together by fascia. When the fascia is healthy, it is supple and glides easily. However, it also can become stressed, inflamed, and painful, especially in the foot.

In some cases, wearing unsupportive shoes can cause plantar fasciitis, especially if you play sports on surfaces that are hard and flat. Other risk factors include being overweight or obese, working in a job that has you on your feet all day, or participating in a high-impact exercise program. Sometimes, it can also be the result of the shape of your foot, such as having high arches or flat feet.

Symptoms of plantar fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis pain most often affects the heel and arch. Symptoms can include tenderness and swelling along with stabbing pains. You may even have problems with putting weight on the foot. Discomfort is most significant after a period of rest, including when you get out of bed in the morning or if you've been sitting for a period of time. Movement stretches the plantar fascia and can bring temporary relief.

Treatments for plantar fasciitis

First and foremost, you must get a correct diagnosis. Dr. Henry and our staff conduct a thorough medical exam that includes diagnostic ultrasound and digital X-ray images. This is important to determine the severity and possible cause, as well as to rule out other issues, like a fracture.

Depending on your situation, treatment options can include: 

Medication

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can reduce the plantar fascia's inflammation and help relieve your pain. Medication may be taken multiple times a day for a few weeks.

Special devices

Orthotics are special shoe inserts that support the heel and foot. They can be purchased off-the-shelf or custom-fitted depending on your situation. 

Night splints stretch the plantar fascia and Achilles tendon overnight by holding them in a lengthened position.

Physical therapy

Often the first line of defense is rest, ice, and medication. If you are still experiencing pain, however, physical therapy can teach you exercises to stretch and strengthen the affected area.

Injection therapy

A steroid injection can help ease severe discomfort that hasn't been relieved by other methods. It typically reduces pain for about a month and decreases inflammation even longer.

Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT)

During this treatment, the plantar fascia is shocked with sound waves to stimulate blood flow, help heal the tissue, and decrease the pain by stunning the nerves.

If you're tired of suffering from heel and arch pain every time you stand up and start to walk around, call us or book your appointment online today so we can find the right treatment for you.

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