Foot Health Blog
Find expert articles from physical therapists and podiatrists to help understand, diagnose, and treat different foot health issues such as plantar fasciitis, bunions, flat feet, and more.
Plantar Fasciitis: Causes, Symptoms, Treatments, and More
The latest research is showing that plantar fasciitis consists of small micro-tears and thickening in the plantar fascia itself (the band of soft tissue that makes up the arch of the foot) and is most commonly caused by your feet being overloaded. The most common causes of this overload are poor foot mechanics (collapsed arches, flat, and high-arched feet) combined with too much standing and inappropriate shoes. Sport and exercise are also often implicated again due to the foot being overloaded and not getting a chance to heal itself.
The most common symptom of plantar fasciitis is heel pain that increases after exercise, long periods of sitting, or when you first wake up in the morning. However, plantar fasciitis can cause more problems if left untreated.
» Can orthotics relieve plantar fasciitis symptoms? Upstep's plantar fasciitis custom orthotics can easily fit into your lifestyle and provide the necessary support for your feet
What Can You Do About Plantar Fasciitis Heel Pain?
Correct the foot mechanics with custom-made orthotics
This is particularly important if you have had plantar fasciitis for over 3 months.
Strengthen the muscles of your hips, legs, and feet
Perform exercises designed to make them work better when standing and walking. Simple foot exercises are simply not enough.
Change your shoes
Shoes with good support and a small heel lift are essential. A good pair of running shoes or walking boots are good, flat and soft sneakers are not!
What’s So Special About the Upstep Custom Orthotic Solution?
Our orthotics are custom made to your own foot shape. This means that they will give the maximum support to your feet to reduce the underlying forces responsible.
All of our orthotics come with a comprehensive range of exercises designed by a specialist - our in-house Podiatrist, Philip Wells. These work with your orthotics to give the fastest and most comprehensive rehabilitation program possible.
» Still not convinced custom orthotics are for you? Read the plantar fasciitis custom orthotics review
More Tips for Reducing Plantar Fasciitis Heel Pain
Combining orthotics, good footwear, and exercises always give the best long-term success.Be patient. It takes, on average, 6 months to fully recover from a really bad case of plantar fasciitis.
Everyone is different and this is never truer than when dealing with plantar fasciitis. This means that there is no magic bullet for everyone. However, the general rule of thumb is that in 99% of cases it is the overload of the foot that is to blame and this has to be removed.
Plantar fasciitisTreatment Guide for Plantar FasciitisThe plantar fascia is a thin casing of connective tissue below the skin, surrounding and covering the sole muscles. It extends from the origin of the heel of the foot to the base of the toes. It plays a vital role in the normal biomechanics of the foot, supporting the arch, and providing shock absorption.
What Is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis happens due to the degeneration of collagen of the plantar fascia at its origin, the calcaneal tuberosity of the heel, and the surrounding structures. This is why the pain is located primarily at the heel, which is commonly worse in the morning or after long periods of walking and standing. This is due to the tenderness at the anteromedial heel. A limp may be evident with toe walking to take pressure off the heel.
Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
The cause of plantar fasciitis is mainly due to overuse and falls under the umbrella of "overuse injuries." In simple terms, this is due to repetitive strain on the foot leading to micro-tears of the plantar fascia. However, it can also be due to trauma or other causes such as:
ObesityUse of the wrong shoesImpactful sporting activities like running, soccer, etc. that place stress on the foot with overuseOccupation involving long hours of standing and walking without rest
A sudden increase in activity levels is also the cause just before the onset of symptoms.
What Aggravates Plantar Fasciitis?
There are several aggravating factors like:
Overactivity without adequate rest.Tight calf muscles that limit ankle mobility.Long periods of standing, walking, or running.Wearing high heels regularly as they put excessive strain on the foot and compromise its normal biomechanics.Flat feet or high arches accompanied by incorrect footwear.Excessive pronation (foot rolling inward while walking).Walking barefoot on a hard surface.
Treatments for Plantar Fasciitis
There are various treatments for plantar fasciitis. Post consultation with your healthcare practitioner, a home exercise program can be carried out. With your general practitioner and physiotherapist, make sure the diagnosis is correct depending on the history, clinical examination, and assessments to rule out any other differential diagnosis.
Patient education is the most critical aspect of any rehabilitation and injury management, following the do’s and don'ts, the right way to carry out the exercise program, and wearing soft orthotics specifically designed for plantar fasciitis.
Most cases (around 90%) of plantar fasciitis are successfully managed and treated conservatively.
The Rest and Ice Method
Probably the most common treatment for plantar fasciitis, the rest and ice method can be performed by:
Resting in between your daily activities and avoiding any aggravating activity of daily living that might increase the current pain levels.Icing the painful area for 7-10mins, three times a day, right from the initiation of pain in the acute phase. Ice massages can also be done by freezing a bottle of water and rolling it under your feet.
Massaging the sole deeply also helps in releasing the tension and relaxing the fascia. Myofascial release from a qualified physiotherapist in the clinic also contributes to the recovery.
Stretching and Exercise
Exercises for the foot and lower limb are essential in recovering from plantar fasciitis. Mobility exercises for the ankle that include stretching and strengthening, along with electrotherapeutic modalities like ultrasound and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), also play a significant role in healing plantar fasciitis.
Using Custom Orthotics to Treat Plantar Fasciitis
Orthopedic shoe inserts or orthotics (molded insoles for your shoes) are another form of assistive device prescribed in conjunction with the above conservative treatments to speed up the recovery process.
Custom-made orthotics, like Upstep's Plantar Fasciitis Custom Orthotics are highly beneficial in the treatment of plantar fasciitis. They help with pain and improving function by reducing the pressure and strain on the plantar fascia during standing, walking, and other activities of daily living. These orthotics also targets issues with the arches like flat feet, high arches, and pronation.
As every individual is different with different body biomechanics, it is imperative to have custom-made orthotics to assist and contribute to the speedy rehabilitation from plantar fasciitis in the right way. It is ideally best to remove the shoe insole while wearing your custom-made orthotics and not to place custom-made orthotics on top of the shoe insoles as they work best when they rest securely on the shoe's interior.
» Ready to get started? Order a pair of Custom Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis today.
How Often Should You Wear Custom Orthotics?
Your body needs to get adjusted and used to wearing an external assistive device like foot orthotics; hence it is necessary to start by wearing for 4 to 6 hours a day, moving to 8 hours a day. It usually takes around 3 to 4 weeks to get used to the orthotics before you can start wearing them all day.
It is important to stop wearing orthotics entirely at the right time and not earlier before reaping the full benefits as weaning them off too early can further damage the feet, leading to serious health issues. Hence, wearing orthotics for at least 3 to 6 months is recommended before weaning them off completely post consultation with your healthcare practitioner.
Should You Wear Custom Orthotics Forever?
Wearing your custom made foot inserts forever or not depends upon the level of dysfunction and faulty biomechanics of the foot posture. In cases of severe flat feet, high arches, and pronated feet that frequently lead to recurrent injuries, aches, and pains with functional limitations, there may be a need to use custom orthotics forever. This is not only a treatment for plantar fasciitis but also a preventative measure for future injuries and pain.
It is vital to wear good custom made orthotics, like Upstep, along with other conservative treatments of physical therapy and home exercise programs for plantar fasciitis to assist in a complete rehabilitation and preventative measure.
» Still not convinced? Read more about the benefits of using custom orthotics for plantar fasciitis.
Custom Made Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis Improves the Quality of Your Life
Custom orthotics will make life with plantar fasciitis easier. Upstep creates plantar fasciitis custom orthotics that give you long-term pain relief for everyday activities, from work to sports. These orthotics cost 60% less than any other custom orthotic brand and are risk-free to try for 120 days.
Plantar fasciitisTop 7 Insoles for Treating Plantar Fasciitis-Related Calf PainPlantar fasciitis-related calf pain is a commonly reported condition if you spend the majority of the day on your feet, you're an athlete, or wear high heel shoes. Plantar fasciitis doesn't directly cause calf pain but is rather associated with tightness experienced in the calf muscle because of the tension placed on your foot.
Wearing the correct insoles can help lessen this tension, but in a market saturated with products, it can be intimidating to choose insoles. That's why we've listed the top 7 insoles for treating plantar fasciitis-related calf pain below.
» Is your calf pain unrelated to plantar fasciitis? Explore the best insoles for general calf pain
1. Upstep Plantar Fasciitis Custom Orthotics
Upstep Plantar Fasciitis Custom Orthotics are designed to optimize your lifestyle by supporting the arch of your foot through specifically designed insoles you cast in the comfort of your own home. The insoles work by alleviating the tension applied to the plantar fascia on the underside of the foot and subsequently on the calf muscle itself.
This affordable orthotic has shown positive results for many in alleviating symptoms of plantar fasciitis, proving to be a great long-term solution with a 120-day-money-back guarantee.
» Are custom orthotics right for you? Compare custom orthotics vs over-the-counter insoles
2. URthotics Comfort+ Insoles
URthotics Comfort+ Insoles are designed with a soft top layer for people with sensitive feet as well as metatarsal and forefoot pain. These custom orthotics are made from molds of your feet, thereby providing maximum comfort and support because they're uniquely suited to your feet.
URthotics Comfort+ Insoles are more expensive than other options, but are also HSA and FSA eligible.
3. Superfeet Run Pain Relief Insoles
The Superfeet Run Pain Relief Insoles are specifically designed for those struggling with symptoms associated with plantar fasciitis and have proven to be effective in alleviating it. The insoles come with a heel stabilizer designed to personalize your arch support and stabilize the foot within a moderate-fitting shoe.
However, these insoles aren't the same as custom orthotics and can only be adjusted to fit the size of your foot through trimming.
4. Tread Labs Pace Wide Insoles
Tread Labs Pace Wide Insoles are made with firm arch support for those with wider feet that may be struggling with symptoms related to plantar fasciitis or severe pronation. These insoles fit well within running sneakers, hiking boots, and other footwear through a full-length removable design.
However, the insoles purchased come with a no-returns or exchange policy. The insoles are also made with four different arch height supports and finding the perfect one for you might prove challenging.
5. Protalus M-100 Insoles
The Protalus M-100 Insoles are an extremely affordable way to provide comfort and support to people with larger or wider shoes. The raised edges around the sides of the insoles, notably on the inner side of the foot, aim to relieve pressure from your feet. Therefore, these insoles may be effective in managing symptoms related to plantar fasciitis.
However, some users have reported that the insoles are bigger than expected, thereby not providing an optimal fit. Others have reported they didn't experience as much relief from their symptoms as they might’ve expected.
6. SOLE Everyday Medium Insoles
The SOLE Everyday Medium Insoles are a great alternative to prescription insoles, while still giving your foot support and aiming to reduce pain from plantar fasciitis. These insoles are a long-term solution for many by reducing the shock placed onto your feet structures.
However, some users have reported that the insoles are extremely firm and don't provide enough cushioning, leading to discomfort in the feet.
7. FitMyFoot Full-Length Insoles (Wave)
The FitMyFoot Full-Length Wave Insoles are designed to relieve foot pain, achieve better body alignment, and make your shoes feel and fit better on your feet. The insoles are 3D printed for a maximum fit and are ideal for athletic shoes. The insoles come with a shock-absorbing heel cushion and dynamic arch support for those suffering from plantar fasciitis.
Custom orthotics are an ideal choice if you're looking for an affordable, long-term solution to the burning sensation and discomfort associated with plantar fasciitis and calf pain. The custom-made insoles are specifically made to support and contour to the exact shape of your feet during the manufacturing process, thereby giving you maximum comfort.
» Suffering from flat feet and plantar fasciitis? Look for these features in your orthotics Plantar fasciitis7 Best Cycling Shoe Insoles for Plantar FasciitisAs good and enjoyable as cycling is, it can have detrimental effects on your feet. If you throw plantar fasciitis into the mix, cycling can become a significant source of pain and discomfort. While proper shoes, cleats, and techniques may be enough for the average cyclist, those with plantar fasciitis may also require insoles.
Whether you’re cycling for fun or professionally, those with plantar fasciitis must use the best insoles to maintain optimal foot mechanics, reduce plantar fascia stress, and, with time, reduce discomfort and pain.
In this article, we've reviewed some of the market's best cycling shoe insoles for plantar fasciitis.
» What causes plantar fasciitis? Discover symptoms and treatments of plantar fasciitis
1. Upstep Plantar Fasciitis Custom Orthotics
Upstep plantar fasciitis insoles are made for you on-demand, factoring in your unique foot impression and lifestyle. The custom orthotics also guarantee maximum support and comfort, relieve pain, and ease the strain on the plantar fascia—possibly making them the best orthotics for plantar fasciitis and flat feet.
Upstep insoles are firm and sturdy to improve shock absorption. They're also affordable and eligible for HSA and FSA insurance.
» What exercises will help with plantar fasciitis? Try these stretches and strengthening exercises for plantar fasciitis
2. Upstep Cycling Custom Orthotics
Upstep cycling custom orthotics have better footbeds than those provided by most cycling shoes. That’s not entirely surprising seeing as they're designed to match the contour of the individual foot.
The benefits of cycling orthotics include high durability, improved performance, and reduced risk of injury. This is achieved by the unique materials the orthotics are made from because they evenly spread the pressure in the cycle sole to increase your foot's comfort, support, and stability.
» Do you need additional arch support? Consider these cycling shoe insoles for arch support
3. Tread Labs Lael Wilcox Cycling Insoles
Tread Labs Lael Wilcox cycling insoles are primarily performance-enhancing and not pathology-limiting, meaning they'll have a limited effect on plantar fasciitis. However, since they're made from 100% carbon fibre, they provide rigid arch support.
Lael Wilcox insoles are best for shoes with thin or no inserts and come in generic sizes. There are also four different arch heights for individuals requiring different levels of arch support. Tread Labs Lael Wilcox are affordable and will work well if you can find a perfect fit.
4. SOLE Active Medium Insoles with Metatarsal Pad
SOLE Active medium insoles with metatarsal pads are clinically proven to provide plantar fasciitis support. Due to the metatarsal pad, they also improve forefoot comfort in medium-fitting shoes.
These insoles are designed from recyclable wine corks, making them carbon-negative and increasing their shock absorption. They can be molded into shape by wearing them on the foot, as opposed to being wear-ready like custom orthotics.
5. Superfeet Run Pain Relief Insoles
As the name implies, Superfeet Run Pain Relief insoles are designed specifically for runners. However, they come with a wider forefoot and a deep heel cup, making them suitable for wide cycling shoes.
These insoles have moisture-wick fabrics for odor control and can keep your cycling shoes smelling fresh, especially for those who sweat a lot. They also have a heel stabilizer and therapeutic foam to stabilize the foot and reduce the effect of repetitive stress on the feet.
If you opt for Superfeet run pain relief insoles, you will have to worry about fitting as they come in generic sizes, which may somewhat reduce their effectiveness.
6. Protalus T-100 Insoles
Protalus T-100 insoles are best for low-volume shoes with removable inserts. Although thinner, they provide more cushion and comfort than the M-series. These insoles come in specific sizes meaning there may be a need for trimming to find your exact size.
Protalus T-100 insoles are affordable and can help improve performance as a cyclist. However, these insoles don't offer much benefit to those with plantar fasciitis.
7. URthotics Active/Sports Insoles
The good thing about custom orthotics like URthotics active/sports insoles is that you don't need to know anything about your foot arch height or size beforehand. URthotics sports insoles are made based on the contouring of your foot. They also have a deep heel cup to keep the feet aligned.
URthotics sports insoles may be more expensive, but if you have an active HSA or FSA card, you can pay with that or you can pay in installments using ShopPay.
If you have plantar fasciitis and plan on cycling often, consider getting custom orthotics. Even if you have no plantar fasciitis, the perfect fit of custom orthotics to your foot will have preventive effects and can help improve your performance and reduce your injury risk.
» Concerned about cycling with plantar fasciitis? Read these tips from a physical therapist Plantar fasciitisHow to Relieve Plantar Fasciitis Pain Using Pressure PointsPlantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. If it is not managed, it can lead to significant functional limitation and discomfort. Fortunately, there are various methods to manage your plantar fasciitis, including NSAIDs, rest, massage, exercises, and wearing custom orthotics for plantar fasciitis. One of the lesser-known methods is the use of pressure points.
Pressure points are sensitive parts of the body that bring pain relief upon sustained pressure to it. They correspond to traditional Chinese medicine acupressure points, which are thought to control the flow of qi between body parts, and can be used to treat body discomfort even beyond plantar fasciitis.
Can Plantar Fasciitis Be Treated Using Massage Techniques?
A massage is one of the most effective ways in treating plantar fasciitis. When done correctly, you can massage the plantar fasciitis away. Massaging improves circulation and stimulates the release of endorphins, which are natural pain-relieving agents. It also promotes relaxation, relieving tension in the foot and reducing pain.
You can massage your plantar fasciitis yourself, or get someone to help you. You may also perform the massage manually or you may use a massage machine. Regardless of the technique you choose, understand that a massage can initially be discomforting, but it should not inflict pain. Always start your massage gently, and whenever possible, use a medium technique to reduce the effect of friction on the procedure.
Some of the massages you can use include the following techniques and methods:
The kneading massage technique.The effleurage technique.The petrissage method.The cross-fiber method.
Are There Pressure Points That Can Be Massaged to Relieve Plantar Fasciitis?
There are many pressure points in the foot. By targeting the ones that connect to the foot and applying pressure to them, you can relieve plantar fasciitis. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, three pressure points that directly affect heel pain are Tai Xi, Kun Lun, and Yong Quan (KD 1). These have links to the liver and kidney yin deficiency—hence their effectiveness in relieving heel pain.
While the Tai Xi pressure point is between the Achilles tendon and the top of that inner bony bump on your ankle (medial malleolus), the Kun Lun is the depression between the lateral malleolus and your Achilles tendon. The KD 1 pressure point is at the depression between the big toe and second toe.
You can target these points when aiming for pain relief after plantar fasciitis. Pain relief will occur through the release of endorphins and the stimulation of larger nerve fibers that block pain perception. Also, the pressure may stimulate the autonomic nervous system and affect the body's response to pain. Regardless of how it causes relief, massaging the pressure points is bound to relieve plantar fasciitis and reduce the time it takes to heal. To find out if you're on the right track, here are four signs that your plantar fasciitis is healing.
How to Massage Pressure Points to Relieve Plantar Fasciitis
You can either self-massage or use a massage machine alongside strengthening exercises specifically for plantar fasciitis; you can also get a professional to help you. Whichever way, there are different ways you can massage pressure points. The idea is to find which one works best for you and stick to it. Some techniques include:
Massage With the Heel of Your Hand
Bend the affected foot over the knee of the other leg while sitting on a chair, or at the edge of the bed.Using the heel of the opposite hand, apply pressure to the sole. Work your way down from the heel to the bottom of the toes.Cover the entire sole up to ten times, increasing the pressure with each repetition. You can increase the pressure by leaning into your hand with your body weight.
The difference between the heel-of-hand massage and this is in the tool. To perform this:
Begin in a seated position with one leg crossed over the other.Using the thumb, apply pressure to your sole, moving from the heel to the toes and back. Ensure you cover every region of the foot.Continue for 1 to 2 minutes, increasing the pressure with every cycle.
To increase the intensity of the massage with the heel of your hand or the thumb massage, you can flex your toes in different directions as you massage from your heel to your toes.
Plantar fasciitis commonly affects the foot, especially athletes, and people that stand for long periods. Already, a massage is an established way to curb its symptoms, offering pain relief. When you target the pressure points in the foot with the massage, you increase the effectiveness of the treatment and prevent plantar fasciitis from becoming a chronic condition.
Massages are one of the many ways that you can remedy plantar fasciitis pain. To learn more, take a look at our posts on Epsom salts for plantar fasciitis and the things you should avoid doing with plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitisDo Epsom Salt Foot Soaks Help Plantar Fasciitis?Epsom salt, a water-soluble mineral compound consisting of magnesium and sulfate, has been around for years as a home remedy for relieving pain in the feet. Magnesium sulfate is the active ingredient in Epsom salt and is broken down when added to water. The evidence for the benefits of using Epsom salts for pain relief during foot baths is primarily anecdotal, with reports from many people over the years describing the relief from pain and inflammation, alongside other benefits.
Plantar fasciitis is a condition characterized by pain and inflammation originating from the heel and sole of the foot. The plantar fascia is responsible for maintaining the arch of the foot when placed under weight and provides shock absorption when the foot strikes the ground. The causes of plantar fasciitis can be caused by altered foot biomechanics, prolonged periods of standing, and inadequate support from shoes or footwear.
Plantar fasciitis can be treated with a host of home remedies that can manage the pain experienced quite well. By lowering cortisol levels in the bodies of people with high stress, you can reduce inflammation and subsequent pain experienced in the soles of the feet. Epsom salts aid in healing the skin of the foot, eliminating bacteria, and may also provide symptom relief from conditions such as gout.
Do Epsom Salt Foot Baths Actually Help Your Feet?
There are various ways that Epsom salts can help the pain in your feet, including the following:
Reduces stress and promotes relaxation, which can decrease inflammation in the bodyReduces pain and inflammation in the feetReduces muscle cramps Increases nerve and muscle function Increases circulation in the feet, which promotes healing and can assist in preventing blood clots Reduces fungal and bacteria growth on the feet and toenails Can help ease symptoms of other inflammatory or painful disorders affecting the feet, such as gout or arthritis
» What other treatments can be used with a salt bath? Consider investing in plantar fasciitis custom orthotics as a long-term solution that can easily fit into your lifestyle. Make sure to read product reviews before purchasing orthotics.
Can You Put Essential Oils Into Your Epsom Salt Bath?
The addition of essential oils to your foot bath can further increase your relaxed state and provide some health benefits. Some essential oils have anti-inflammatory benefits that can potentially reduce the pain and inflammation associated with plantar fasciitis.
Two or three drops of peppermint and lavender essential oils can be added to your Epsom salt foot bath to further aid in symptom relief. The aromatic scents from essential oils are relaxing and may help you reduce stress while soaking your feet, essentially clearing your mind while reducing the dryness of your feet.
How You Should Prepare a Foot Bath or Whole Body Soak
Some preparation is needed for this home remedy. Two tablespoons of Epsom salt can be added to one quart of warm water to dissolve it. Ensure that the water is not too hot before submerging your feet in the bath as this may scald them. People with conditions that may cause nerve damage and altered sensation in the feet should be sure to test the water temperature before placing their feet in the bath. Inspecting the foot for blisters should be routinely conducted if you do have altered sensation in your feet and are making use of foot soaking methods.
A larger amount of Epsom salt can be added to a bath of warm water if you are looking to have a full-body soak. The effects of Epsom salt and warm water will aid in reducing pain and inflammation in muscles and joints.
Vinegar can be added to help you treat common bacterial or fungal infections that affect the feet and has been shown to reduce odors as well. One should stop foot soaking with Epsom salts if your skin becomes itchy, a rash develops, or if any kind of adverse symptoms arise.
Why You Should Try an Epsom Salt Bath
The benefits and pleasure derived from a foot soak outweigh any potential risks—which are minimal if even existent at all. However, one should avoid foot soaks if you have open wounds on the feet as this could lead to infections and other complications. Epsom salt can be easily acquired from a health shop or pharmacy at a relatively low cost. Foot soaking is relatively inexpensive and can be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home, about twice a week, to help relax you and improve your mental state, as well as reduce negative symptoms in your feet. Plantar fasciitisBest Herbs for Plantar FasciitisPlantar fasciitis is one of the most common conditions affecting the heel of the foot. Pain arises from the inflammation of the plantar fascia, which originates at the heel and spans the length of the foot as far as the toes. The role of the plantar fascia is to support the arch of the foot when placed under weight. Risk factors for developing plantar fasciitis include age, obesity, altered foot mechanics, and high activity levels on hard surfaces.
Can You Use Herbs to Relieve Pain From Plantar Fasciitis?
There are various herbs that can be used to relieve plantar fasciitis pain due to their analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, including the following:
Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Known as a natural anti-inflammatory, ginger aids in reducing inflammation in the plantar fascia and can be easily consumed in a balanced diet.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) root
Known to aid in reducing pain and inflammation in the body. Turmeric can be consumed as per your preference.
Horsetail (Equisetum Telmatela)
Has been used as a natural anti-inflammatory extensively in ancient cultures and still provides benefits today.
Easily consumed in a diet in the form of tea or consuming the leaves themselves, mint has shown anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties.
Be sure to read the product instructions to best understand how to safely and correctly dose, or consult with a Dietician or nutrition specialist for more information.
Can Plantar Fasciitis Be Treated Fully With Herbs?
It would be unlikely that plantar fasciitis can be fully treated using only herbs, but it may show better results when used in conjunction with other natural remedies. Reducing the inflammation in the foot will lead to the greatest decrease in symptoms. By identifying the activities and foods that may cause inflammation in combination with the below natural treatments for plantar fasciitis, your associated symptoms can be managed well and may allow you to complete your daily tasks pain-free.
Other Natural Remedies for Treating Plantar Fasciitis
Stretching the toes and forefoot backward will stretch the plantar fascia and can aid in reducing tension placed on the fascia.
Icing the painful area will aid in reducing inflammation and pain symptoms. This can be applied after physical activity or in the instance of onset pain.
Resting will reduce the physical requirements of the plantar fascia, allowing the inflammation and pain to subside.
Supportive orthotics designed for plantar fasciitis have shock-absorbing qualities, thus reducing the amount of force placed through the heel when walking or running. Orthotics distribute the weight through the entirety of the foot, reducing high-pressure areas that may lead to pain or discomfort.
Massaging or rolling of the plantar fascia can help relieve symptoms of pain and inflammation, as well as relax your body and aid your sleep, thus giving you the best chance to heal as fast as possible. Plantar fasciitis5 Vitamins That Help With Plantar FasciitisThough often not life-threatening, plantar fasciitis can be life-changing. Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the fibrous band of tissue called the plantar fascia which connects the heel to the forefoot. Heel pain is a major symptom of plantar fasciitis and must be dealt with decisively. Otherwise, it can affect your ability to perform your regular activities of daily living, reduce your QoL and affect your fitness level.
Minerals and vitamins are readily available options for improving foot health and addressing such conditions as plantar fasciitis. For example, magnesium reduces the rate of inflammation and breaks down all calcium deposits preventing the formation of heel spurs - which is common in plantar fasciitis. Thus, apart from being natural remedies, both minerals and vitamins are also effective in relieving symptoms of plantar fasciitis.
Vitamins and Minerals That Assist With Plantar Fasciitis Pain
Several vitamins are effective in remedying plantar fasciitis pain. Some of them are listed below along with their function, recommended dosage and source
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is the top-rated vitamin for addressing all foot pain problems, including plantar fasciitis. It has strong anti-oxidant properties. By consuming vitamin C, any inflammation caused by plantar fasciitis will reduce. Sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, green peppers, melons, kiwis, strawberries, alfalfa sprouts, and potato skin
2. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is similar to calcium in its function. When it is deficient, it can lead to the formation of heel spurs, which is a common occurrence in plantar fasciitis and a major source of pain. Thus, taking enough vitamin D will prevent the formation of heel spurs, relieve foot pain and also improve muscle function.
Food sources of vitamin D include mushrooms, soy milk, oatmeal, fish (salmon sardine, canned tuna, eggs). It is also produced by the skin with exposure to the early morning sun.
3. Alpha-Lipoic Acid
Alpha-lipoic acid is sometimes thought of as a variation of Vitamin E or a B vitamin. It is an antioxidant found in many foods and made naturally in the body. Its strong antioxidant properties will reduce inflammation.
Likewise, it is known to relieve pain symptoms including pain due to nerve damage or neuropathy. Combined, these functions make it useful in addressing plantar fasciitis.
Alpha-lipoic acid can be gotten through spinach, red meat, carrots, rice, broccoli, yams, beets, potatoes, tomatoes, yeast, Brussels sprouts, and bran.
Resveratrol possesses anti-oxidant properties that can prevent inflammation. Asides from this, it also improves blood flow which can help speed up healing in the foot and lead to the influx of pain-relieving substances in the by.
It is found in the skin of red grapes, in red wine, peanuts and several berries. You can also take resveratrol as a supplement.
5. B Vitamins
B vitamins (especially Vitamins B-1, B-6) can cause foot pain when they are deficient. So if you have plantar fasciitis and these vitamins are deficient, it can significantly increase your pain.
Vitamin B-1 which is thiamine helps you digest carbohydrates and use fats and proteins. It also supports your immune system. It is found in pork, cereals, and yeast extracts. Vitamin B-6 called pyridoxine in addition to all these, supports the nervous system and its deficiency causes painful and burning sensations. It’s found in fish, beef liver, potatoes and meat.
Can You Rely on Only Vitamins to Heal Plantar Fasciitis?
The faster you get rid of plantar fasciitis, the better your quality of life. As such, using vitamins alone to address plantar fasciitis may not be the best approach possible. If you’ve been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis, your available treatment options include rest, use of ice, exercises, use of orthotics. NSAIDs and cortisone injections may also prove quite handy when the pain is severe.
Natural remedies like vitamins and minerals may improve your foot health by assisting and speeding up your recovery. Thus, the best way to treat your plantar fasciitis is to use the vitamins with other treatment options. This way you’ll get the fastest results.
What Should You Do if You Are Not Experiencing Relief With Natural Remedies?
Natural remedies may be enough intervention for your plantar fasciitis if you catch it quite early. But if you notice no improvement in your symptoms within a month, you should see your doctor or podiatrist.
A podiatrist will probe beneath the symptoms to identify the cause of the plantar fasciitis and prescribe a treatment regimen that best addresses the condition and puts you on course for recovery. And where conservative treatment is not possible, your doctor may recommend surgery as a last resort to bring healing and relief. Plantar fasciitisMagnesium for Plantar Fasciitis: How It Can Relieve Heel Pain Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia, which connects the heel to the base of the toes. It occurs because of repetitive foot strain and associated micro-tears of the plantar fascia. Among other things, heel pain is a major symptom of plantar fasciitis and must be dealt with decisively before it escalates.
Natural Ways to Decrease Pain or Inflammation in the Heel
There are many ways to handle heel pain due to plantar fasciitis. Beginning with natural home remedies, you can treat the heel pain before it becomes more complicated. Here are a few natural methods to handle the pain and decrease heel inflammation
Magnesium reduces the rate of inflammation. Likewise, magnesium breaks down calcium deposits. By increasing your intake of magnesium, you can combat inflammation. You can also break down any heel spurs that can lead to heel pain.
RICE is an acronym for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Once plantar fasciitis is diagnosed, ensure that you rest the foot. You can either rest between daily activities, replace high-impact activities with low-impact ones, or reduce the length of activities performed on the foot.
You can also ice the painful heel for 5-10 minutes at a time, three times daily. This is especially true in the acute phase and helps to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. Compression and elevation are also effective in reducing any associated swelling and inflammation that may result from the fasciitis.
You can massage the heel to release any tension in the feet and relax the plantar fascia. A myofascial release technique is particularly useful in dealing with the pain and inflammation that plantar fasciitis causes.
Different exercises can help alleviate pain and inflammation due to plantar fasciitis. Mobility exercises, strengthening exercises, and stretching exercises are all essential in fully recovering from any heel pain including, plantar fasciitis. These exercises promote healing, reducing inflammation and relieving pain in the process.
What Does Magnesium Do for the Body?
Magnesium is an essential nutrient in the body responsible for the maintaining nerve and muscle function. It also promotes a healthy immune system, keeps the bones strong and healthy, and increases the production of energy and protein. Magnesium also helps to adjust blood glucose levels. Magnesium has also been found to help prevent and treat symptoms of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
In fact, magnesium has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce inflammation and relieve pain. It also aids calcium absorption by causing calcium deposits to break down and increasing their influx into the blood.
Best Ways to Increase Your Magnesium Intake
A daily intake of 400–420 mg is recommended for men and 310–320 mg for women. You can increase your magnesium intake by eating magnesium-rich foods like avocado, yoghurt, whole grains, banana, legumes, nuts and seeds, etc. You can also take magnesium supplements. Plantar fasciitisTreatment of Plantar Fibroma: Exercises, Insoles, and MoreA plantar fibroma is a rare growth in the plantar fascia, the thick band of tissue at the base of the foot. Though benign, this growth continues to increase in size, causing pain. This can make it difficult to perform ordinary activities of daily living like standing, walking, or wearing shoes.
This article looks at the symptoms and causes of plantar fibroma and discusses the various treatment options available.
Symptoms of Plantar Fibroma
Initially, plantar fibroma is asymptomatic and barely noticeable. Over time, it becomes a noticeable and firm lump in the arch of the foot. As it grows, it begins to cause pain and pressure in the arch of the foot. Subsequently, multiple fibromas can develop.
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Causes of Plantar Fibroma
A plantar fibroma is rare, and its cause is unknown. You are, however, at an increased risk of developing the growth due to the following reasons:
People above 40 are more likely to develop a plantar fibroma.
Statistically, men are twice as likely to develop a fibroma than women.
If someone in your family has had it, then you’re more likely to develop one.
People of European descent seem to be more prone to having plantar fibroma than others. On the other hand, it is rare in people of Asian descent.
Chronic liver disease, thyroid disorders, diabetes, and epilepsy have all been implicated as risk factors for plantar fibroma. Other fibroproliferative conditions like keloids and Peyronie’s disease can also increase your risk.
Beta-blockers, Anti-seizure drugs, glucosamine, chondroitin, and vitamin C supplements are also suspected to increase the risk of plantar fibroma.
Trauma due to overuse or injury to the bottom of the foot can potentially cause a fibroma.
How these risks cause plantar fibroma remains unknown, so prevention and curing remain challenging. However, the symptoms can be alleviated using different treatment methods.
How to Treat Plantar Fibroma Symptoms
The primary symptom of a plantar fibroma is pain and discomfort. Hence, the goal of treatment is generally to relieve pain and make standing/wearing shoes more bearable. This can be achieved using any of the following:
While exercises won’t dissolve the fibroma, they will strengthen the foot arch and make the foot more flexible. These exercises can be performed at home, with or without the help of a physiotherapist, and include the following:
1. Stand facing the wall with the affected foot about two steps behind
2. Place your hands on the wall at shoulder height
3. With the knee of the affected leg straight and the heel firmly on the floor, press forwards on the front leg
4. When you feel a stretch on the calf of the affected leg, hold the position for 20-30 seconds and then relax
5. Repeat 3 times daily.
1. While sitting erect in a chair, cross your affected foot over the opposite knee
2. Grab your big toe with your index finger and thumb and pull in the direction of your chin
3. When you feel a stretch in your arch, hold the position for 20-30 seconds and then relax
4. Repeat 3 sets of 10-15 repetitions daily
A Physiotherapist will manage a plantar fibroma with a combination of massage that includes passive stretching of the fascia, electrotherapy, isometric exercises of the toe extensors, shockwave therapy, and splinting.
A corticosteroid injection into the nodule will reduce pain and inflammation, making it easier to walk. However, it is worthy of note that steroid injections are a temporary measure as it only addresses the pain and does nothing to reduce the growth.
Orthotics are also helpful when treating a plantar fibroma. They help redistribute body weight, ease the pressure on the heel, and reduce the tension in the plantar fascia. Orthotics make standing or wearing shoes more comfortable, thereby improving the quality of life. Although there are many different types of orthotics, custom orthotics are preferable as they can more closely conform to the shape of the foot. You can order Upstep custom orthotics online and have them delivered to your location.
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Surgery is used as a last resort when conservative management fails to improve symptoms but should not be taken lightly. A surgical procedure can flatten your foot arch or increase the risk of developing hammertoes, and the fibroma may even grow back after a while.
Should You See a Doctor for a Plantar Fibroma?
In the end, a plantar fibroma affects people differently. It is important to seek appropriate care immediately if you notice any growth in the arch of your foot. Your doctor will talk to you about the best approach to manage the condition so as to maintain your quality of life.