Plantar fasciitis? Am I affected?
City life is more hectic than ever. People frequently rush from one activity to another. Gradually, plantar fasciitis develop. Yet, people usually dismiss this condition as common fatigue on their feet, without realising that they have developed this condition. So, what is plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a condition affecting the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects the heel to the front of the foot. This ligament also supports the foot arch and enable people to walk. Due to excessive walking, there is an increased pressure on the feet that may stress the plantar fascia. Hence, the ligament may overtime be inflamed. Such inflammation causes the heel to be painful and stiff.
The most common symptom of plantar fasciitis includes pain at the bottom of heel, or bottom of the mid-foot area. The discomfort can affect one foot, or both feet. The pain may be described as a dull one, or even a sharp one in some cases. For some, there would possibly be a burning sensation or ache at the bottom of the feet.
People with certain conditions are at higher risk of having plantar fasciitis due to increased pressure on their plantar fascia. Such include: Obesity, pregnancy, sports like long distance runners and those with structural foot problems like very high arches or very flat feet.
A diagnosis for plantar fasciitis over at the doctor’s side include a physical examination for any tenderness at the foot and to pin-point the exact location of the source of the discomfort to properly diagnose that it is not related to another foot issue. There will also be an evaluation of the muscles strength and nerves health through examining the reflexes, muscle tone and coordination. In some cases, there may be an X-ray conducted to further ensure that there ais no further complications like a bone fracture.
Treatment options for plantar fasciitis can include a range of home treatments, medical treatments such as those to reduce inflammation and physical therapy to stretch the plantar fascia, and lastly surgery to fix the damaged ligament. Home treatment options can include applying ice on your feet for 15-20 minutes, repeating this for 3-4 times daily to reduce the swelling caused by the inflammation. To minimise wear and tear on the plantar fascia, changing your exercise routine is helpful. For example, instead of running long distances, working out at a gym is a alternative to keep fit. Occasional stretching can help with relieving the pain as well. Wearing the proper footwear with arch supports minimises the pressure being exerted on the ligament.
Ladies wearing high heels also run the risk of having plantar fasciitis as there is a lot more pressure being exerted. Usually, the side effect of wearing high heels is cold, sweaty and sore feet. The goods news that using a good foot massager can help to reduce the soreness. With various massage techniques aimed to deliver comfort and better blood circulation to the foot, the risk of plantar fasciitis is reduced.