Plantar fasciitis is an orthopedic problem that gives rise to pain in the foot and heel due to strain or pressure on the plantar fascia. This is a ligament or connective tissue which lies in a flat band, connecting your heel with the toes and effectively, providing a basis for the motion of the feet in general. Inflammation, swelling and bruising of this tissue or ligament can lead to excessive pain in the heel.
Let us look at ways that can help you deal with this pain:
- Rest: Taking rest and giving your feet a break from all kinds of strain inducing activities can help in relieving the pain. Also, you can keep your feet elevated to help in reducing the pain in the area.
- Supportive footwear: Using pads within your shoes with gel built into them, or using specific footwear that help in walking without feeling too much of pain is a good way of dealing with Plantar fasciitis. The shoe inserts must be rubber, felt or plastic so that they are soft for your feet. They also give your heel and its arch good support, while Orthotics pulls the ligament so that there is less stress on the same. You can also pull on a pair of night flints which will keep the foot and the ligament stretched while you enjoy a good night of sleep.
- Exercise: Indulging in mild muscle strengthening exercise that also involves stretching and heel hooks can help in alleviating chronic pain that you may be suffering from. Lie flat on your back and take a towel. Lift your leg and hook your foot into it. Now press against the towel and pull down the towel simultaneously. Repeat at least ten times per foot. This will give you flexibility and strength in the area.
- Painkillers: Use pain killers only when absolutely necessary and with due advice from the doctor or Orthopaedic specialist. The use of Ibuprofen and other pain relievers can help in numbing the pain inducing nerves in the brain and give you instant relief.
- Anti-inflammatory drugs: Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medication that can bring down the swelling for more comfortable functioning when you are on your feet. Naproxen is one such drug that helps in bringing down the inflammation. Also, corticosteroid injections can relieve severe pain.
- Surgery: Heel spur removal or Plantar fascia release are some of the surgical options for chronic and severe cases.
Taking care of your feet is a matter of ensuring that you look into the slightest discomfort and report the same to a doctor. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an Orthopedist.