Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Pain
Have heel pain?
With the change of seasonal activities, new muscles will start getting more use and some aches and pains may appear as a result. The most common foot and ankle injury is plantar fasciitis. This is a pain most often found with athletes, people who are sedentary, and those who are obese.
What is it?
Plantar Fasciitis is a repetitive–use injury that causes inflammation in a band of muscle that runs from the heel to your toes. It can be caused by changing footwear, the surface one is walking on, and types of activities, jobs, or exercise. My patients tend to describe it as a sharp stabbing pain in the heel when walking that is sometimes associated with stiffness. Some people describe it as “tired and achy feet” or “cramps” in the heel of the foot. For some, the pain is worse in the morning and fades as the day goes on, and as you move. It may get worse with walking, after periods of exercise or after standing for long periods of time.
What can you do?
There are many options of therapy for someone who is suffering from plantar fasciitis. If you are just starting to experience heel pain, then it would be recommended to follow the P.O.L.I.C.E protocol:
- Protection: For the first few days it would be recommended to rest and limit activity on that foot to allow for the tissues to heal. During this phase, however, we don’t want to cease movement. Which brings us to the next step of the protocol – optimal loading.
- Optimal Loading: This means adding additional light activities to help ease back into full activity while in the protection phase. It could be additional stretches or rehab. Some examples are found to the right.
- Ice: New injuries may come with swelling and an increase in pain. Applying ice to the painful area can help decrease swelling and decrease recovery time.
- Compression: While applying ice you can also add compression to the injured area with an ACE bandage. Here at Rebound, we can also use KT tape to help support the injury.
- Elevation: Elevating the foot above heart level may also help with reducing the swelling of the injury.
For those who have been experiencing plantar fasciitis or heel pain for several weeks, there are additional therapies we can look at:
- Manipulation/Mobilization: Most often with plantar fasciitis, the foot becomes stiff. With chiropractic manipulation, we can help get the foot moving more efficiently.
- Make sure you have appropriate shoes that support the arch of your foot
- Stretch your foot and calves
- Rehab exercises to help strengthen and stretch the foot.
If you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis and are looking for a way to get back to doing what you love, feel free to give us a call at (515) 500-6551 or visit reboundchiropracticia.com to make an appointment.
∗If any of the exercises suggested here cause pain, please discontinue and consult a licensed professional