To properly cure plantar fasciitis, physicians generally
prescribe a combination of the following treatments:
and activity modification - relative rest is generally
prescribed to treat plantar fasciitis. You do not necessarily
have to stay off your feet, but you should decrease
the duration and intensity of your walking and running.
Switching from a running sport to swimming or cycling
can reduce stress to the plantar fascia. Changing to
a softer exercise surface, like grass instead of concrete,
can also help.
Ice – applying ice to your heel for 15 minutes
after walking or activities can help reduce the inflammation.
An easy and effective method for icing your foot is
to roll a can of frozen juice under your arch and heel.
– successful treatment often requires routine
foot stretching to be done two or three times a day.
Before you get out of bed in the morning, physicians
generally recommend that you warm up the plantar fascia
tissue by stretching your foot up and down and side
to side. Before walking, it is often helpful to stretch
the bottom of your foot, by pulling your toes back with
your knee straight and your ankle flexed towards you.
anti-inflammatory medications, like aspirin or ibuprofen,
are sometimes prescribed to reduce pain and swelling.
– many patients receive pain relief from local,
deep massage in the painful area of the heel. Massage
is usually prescribed for the morning, after a hot shower
or bath. Rolling a tennis ball under your arch also
can help relieve some of the tension in your plantar
footwear – shoes should have a stable heel and
a well-cushioned sole. Many dress shoes do not have
adequate arch support and strain the plantar fascia.
Your physician can recommend the type of shoe that provides
the best support for the shape of your foot. Most major
athletic shoe manufacturers design shoes to fit specific
types of feet. Physicians often suggest that patients
wear padded sandals around the house instead of going
inserts – at your physician¹s discretion,
you may need to wear orthotic inserts in your shoes
to properly support your foot. The inserts usually have
an arch support, a suctioned heel lift, and often a
cutout around the tender area. Depending on the shape
of your foot, you may be able to buy an over-the-counter
heel cup or shoe insert. Your physician may prescribe
custom molded orthotic inserts. Most people are instructed
to wear the inserts all day in all their shoes.
splints – physicians commonly prescribe splints
for patients who do not respond to other treatments.
The splints are worn at night and hold your foot in
a flexed, stretched position while you sleep so the
plantar fascia and foot muscles do not tighten.
If a combination of the above treatments does not relieve
your heel pain within about three months, your physician
may prescribe a corticosteroid injection. Corticosteroids
have strong anti-inflammatory properties when injected
directly into your heel. Some physicians may give you
an injection earlier so you can start rehabilitation
free of pain. However, it is important to be aware of
the potentially dangerous side effects of corticosteroid
injections. As with any type of injection into a joint,
there is the risk of infection. In addition, in high
or repetitive doses, corticosteroids may actually cause
the plantar fascia to rupture.
Rehabilitation exercises, stretching,
and non-operative therapies are synonymous for plantar
fasciitis treatment. Curing plantar fasciitis often
requires between six and 12 months of physical therapy.
Your physician and physical therapist can design a custom
rehabilitation program with specific stretching and
strengthening exercises for your calf muscles and feet.
Most physicians recommend a comprehensive leg-strengthening
program to improve your overall endurance and flexibility.
Rehab usually begins with stretching exercises for a
period of weeks until your foot is flexible. Strength
training usually begins within a month after treatment
begins. Initially, you will probably perform light exercises,
including picking objects off the floor with your toes.
The weight of the objects gradually increases as your
foot heals. The final stages of rehab usually include
coordination exercises that are more activity oriented.
The more intense and dedicated you are to following
your physical therapists instructions, the quicker you
can heal your foot and return to sports and activities.
fasciitis rehabilitation exercises
overtraining put you at high risk for recurring plantar
fasciitis. Physicians generally recommend that you avoid
repetitive activities that put constant strain on your
foot. Try to incorporate cross-training into your workout
schedule. For example, instead of running every day,
alternate between running, cycling, and swimming workouts.
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most difficult sports
injuries to completely cure. If you feel pain recur,
decrease your activity level and give your foot a chance
to rest. Stretching and massage can help decrease tension
in the plantar fascia and prevent injury. Finding a
shoe with the proper shape and support for your foot
can help prevent abnormal foot strain. Your athletic
shoes should have good shock absorption in the heel,
good flexibility, and sturdy materials to prevent side-to-side
motion. Try to minimize the time you spend walking in
unpadded dress shoes or boots. You should avoid wearing
everyday shoes with heels higher than one-and-a-half
inches. If your physician has prescribed orthotic inserts,
you should usually continue to wear them in all your
shoes. Based on your activity level, shoe inserts usually
wear out within six months and need to be replaced.