By: Cathey Bowling, DPT, Clinic Manager at SUMMIT-Catoosa
Are you suffering from Plantar Fasciitis? Do you have pain with the first few steps every morning? Have you experienced sharp pain on the bottom of your foot when walking, or after long periods of standing or getting up from a seated position? Plantar Fasciitis affects up to 2 million Americans each year. It is more common over the ago of 40. Unfortunately, this condition includes both the active and sedentary population.
Plantar fascia is a fibrous band of tissue along the bottom of your foot that connects from your heel bone, extending to your toes. This tissue attaches to the Achilles tendon, which attaches to your calf muscles.
Plantar fasciitis has several causes, including inappropriate footwear, training errors in athletes, overuse, occupations that require standing/walking on hard surfaces for extended periods of time such as medical professionals or teachers, overweight individuals, pregnancy, high arches, low arches, limited flexibility, abnormal gait patterns…the list is exhausting!
Appropriate shoe-wear is important. Let’s address the ladies first; high heels and flats are cute. However, heels will shorten the Achilles tendon, therefore placing more stress along the plantar fascia. On the other hand, flat shoes such as dress shoes or flip flops, may not be providing enough support to the plantar fascia. Simple changes such as having shoes with appropriate arch support or having insoles, can help reduce or prevent symptoms.
For athletes, carefully pay attention to training. Your body needs to get used to increase in training. Too fast, too soon, such as sudden increase in distance running can put too much stress to your body. Take time to properly stretch and strengthen your calf muscles. Having appropriate calf length can reduce repetitive trauma or overstretching to the plantar fascia.
Seeking treatment with a licensed physical therapist at SUMMIT Claremore, Catoosa, or Pryor. A Physical therapist (PT) will conduct a thorough evaluation to determine the cause of plantar fasciitis and if any strength or motion deficits are present. The therapist will help restore appropriate ankle/foot support through strengthening within the musculature system. Stretching along with soft tissue mobilizations will be performed to improve flexibility of the ankle and plantar fascia. The PT will examine your gait, to decide if any compensatory patterns have developed. Finally, your physical therapist will determine whether you need shoe inserts or custom orthotics.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call Cathey at SUMMIT-Catoosa or any of our other licensed Physical Therapists at our Claremore or Pryor locations.
Catoosa Clinic: 918-266-6200
Claremore Clinic: 918-342-3800
Pryor Clinic: 918-824-4500