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Five Options for Dealing with Plantar Fasciitis

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Do you have heel pain?

Plantar Fasciitis refers to pain in the heel of the foot and /or arch of the foot. It is estimated that over 1 million patient visits per year are attributed to this disorder. Pain associated with plantar fasciitis is usually worse first thing in the morning and at the end of the day or after exercise. It’s caused by repetitive stress of what’s called your plantar fascia which is a band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot from your heel to your toes. Other than causing a lot of pain, you’ll want to get plantar fasciitis under control sooner rather than later. If left unchecked it can lead to a situation where a bone spur forms on the bottom of the heel which can only be removed with surgery.

Here are some options to deal with Plantar Fasciitis:

1. Use orthotics – Orthotics are inserts that are placed in your shoes that support the arch of your foot. There is a wide price range for orthotics from cheap ones that just cost a few dollars to custom-made orthotics which can cost hundreds of dollars. You basically get what you pay for, so get as much orthotic as you an afford.

2. Wear a night brace – Night braces attach to the lower leg and the foot and are intended to be worn at night in bed. It keeps a constant stretch on the plantar fascia ligament as you sleep. Typically, without the brace, the plantar fascia would be tight in the morning which would cause much pain when first walking. But by keeping the ligament stretched with the night brace, this morning pain is alleviated.

3. Stretching the plantar fascia – Place your hands on a wall. Put one foot back further than the other (staggered) behind you. Leaning forward toward the wall, a stretch is applied to the back foot.  The stretch should be felt in the back of the lower leg (calf) and the bottom of that foot as well. Hold for 20-30 seconds. Now switch feet and repeat. Do this 2x/day.

4. Chiropractic Adjustments – If the aforementioned fail to relieve your symptoms, Chiropractic adjustments are another option to get pressure off the plantar fascia. By adjusting the small bones of the foot, we are able to release pressure off the fascia and thus reduce pain and inflammation.

5. Physical Therapy – A physical therapist can employ one of a multitude of modalities in order to reduce the pain associated with plantar fasciitis. They can use therapeutic ultrasound to reduce inflammation and swelling. And exercises can be prescribed to strengthen the arch of the foot and release tension in the soft tissue structures in the bottom of the foot.

If you or someone you know is suffering from plantar fasciitis, we may

be able to help you at Health Quest through chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, acupuncture or family medicine. Call us today to schedule an evaluation at 573-635-9655.

Yours in health,

Dr. Ted Tang D.C.

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