Plantar fasciitis is a foot condition that develops when repeated activities put a strain on the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that supports the arch of the foot. If you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis, you may have heel spurs, a bony growth that forms on the heel bone.
Plantar fasciitis can develop in athletes who run or jump a great deal, and in people who have jobs that require them to be on their feet for most of the day. It is a condition typically found in people 40 and older, but it can occur in all age groups.
You might feel a stabbing pain on the underside of your heel, and a sensation of tightness and/or tenderness along your arch.
People with plantar fasciitis may experience pain:
- In the morning, when stepping out of bed and taking the first steps of the day
- When standing for a long time
- When standing up after sitting for a long time
- After intense activity such as running or jumping
- When climbing stairs
- When walking barefoot or in shoes with poor support
Everest Rehabilitation Services physical therapists are trained to evaluate and treat plantar fasciitis.
When you are diagnosed, your physical therapist will work with you to develop a program to decrease your symptoms. Your treatment may include:
- Gait assessment (how you walk) and impact on symptoms
- Stretching exercises to improve ankle flexibility and the plantar fascia
- Strengthening exercises to improve supporting muscles.
- Application of ice to decrease pain and inflammation
- Taping of the foot for short-term relief
- Orthotics (shoe inserts) and supportive footwear to help support your arch and reduce stress to the plantar fascia
- A night splint to help maintain correct ankle and toe positions while sleeping
- Gait training to help lessen symptoms and improve walking ability