Ouch! The bottom of my foot hurts when I first step out of bed… I hate when that happens! It didn’t hurt like that when I went to bed last night. Come to think of it, when I got up from my desk at work yesterday it hurt too. Wonder what that’s all about… my friend said it could be plantar fasciitis. Time to see the doctor.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when there is extensive stress with certain activities which may cause degenerative tissue changes and some inflammation in the plantar fascia of the foot.
The plantar fascia is a long band of connective tissue that extends from the heel to the toes. It helps support the arch and contributes to the forces required within the foot to walk. When the forces exceed what the tissue can handle, plantar fasciitis may develop. Plantar fasciitis is a very common cause of foot pain and can be very debilitating, limiting people’s ability to walk, run and stand without increased pain.
Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis
Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include pain located near the heel that increases with the first several steps in the morning and after sitting for long periods of time. Pain often subsides after walking for a few minutes or warming up during exercise. Pain can also occur with prolonged standing or walking long distances and sometimes increases throughout the day. Pain can sometimes last for months and even years if not treated.
photo source Mayo Clinic
People who have flat feet, high arches, decreased ankle range of motion, decreased calf flexibility, participate in activities such as running and exercises that put stress on the feet, are at an increased risk of developing plantar fasciitis.
Additional Resource: 4 Common Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
Treatments For Plantar Fasciitis
There are many different treatment options for plantar fasciitis which range from simple exercises/stretches to surgery, depending on the severity. One of the most important and effective treatment options is wearing the appropriate footwear for your foot type. People who have flat feet or high arches should wear the appropriate shoes to help support the foot and take stress off the plantar fascia. Another option is custom orthotics, which help distribute forces in the foot, support the arch and improve foot mechanics. In addition to footwear, icing, stretching and certain exercises will also help decrease pain and improve function.
If you are suffering from foot pain and are not sure what type of shoe to wear or what exercises will help, physical therapy can help get you on the right track.
When your feet hurt first thing in the morning, it makes your whole day harder. Don’t let it ruin yours. See your doctor and ask if physical therapy can help your plantar fasciitis can be helped with physical therapy. Then give us a call (720) 493-1181!