What is plantar fasciitis?
plantar fascia is located on the bottom of the foot, running
from the heel toward the toes. It helps support body weight.
Plantar fasciitis is a repetitive stress injury that occurs
after standing, running or jumping increases the strain on
the fascia and causes injury.
What are the symptoms of plantar fasciitis?
symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis are generally swelling on the
bottom of the foot and tenderness on the inside of the heel.
Those experiencing Plantar Fasciitis feel a sharp, stabbing
pain on the bottom of the foot that decreases after a few
minutes, but may return after standing or sitting for long
periods of time. The pain can disappear during activity, but
Because Plantar Fasciitis is aggravated by standing and walking,
it can often affect people for 3 to 9 months. Many jobs require
hours of standing, and anyone who is relatively active can
experience a slow recovery because of everyday walking and
standing. Those in professions that require continuous standing
can have a tendency toward long-term problems.
What are the causes and risk factors of plantar fasciitis?
People who spend significant time on their feet are prone
to Plantar Fasciitis. It's common in those whose jobs require
long hours on hard floors, such as nurses or salespeople.
Those who are physically active, especially runner and joggers
who have recently increased their mileage or intensity also
often experience Plantar Fasciitis. As we age and carry a
few extra pounds, we can be more prone to Plantar Fasciitis
due to wear and tear on the body and increased stress on the
Poor quality footwear can result in increased stress on the
plantar fascia, due to the fact that they do not absorb the
shock the way new or high quality shoes do. In Arizona, those
who wear sandals and flip flops frequently can aggravate the
Other conditions such as over-pronation, flat feet, improper
foot mechanics or poor walking mechanics can also lead to
damage of the plantar fascia and continued aggravation.
What are the treatments for plantar fasciitis?
Rest and ice are key parts of home treatment for Plantar Fasciitis,
which is directed at stretching tight muscles, decreasing
chronic inflammation and encouraging proper healing of the
fascia. Additionally, orthotics and night splints can be used
to decrease stress and support the arch and fascia.
Electrical stimulation and ultrasound are effective physiotherapy
treatments which decrease inflammation of the plantar fascia,
while stretching of the calves and hamstrings is another key
component of therapy. This reduces stress and improves walking
mechanics. Your healthcare provider may also prescribe proprioceptive
and foot strengthening exercises, which will further strengthen
the foot and decrease stress on the plantar fascia.
Because plantar fasciitis often involves cycles of inflammation
and healing, it can be hard to treat. Scar tissue formation
on the fascia can result from these repeated cycles of rest
and stress. Although the scar tissue develops as a temporary
patch while the area is healing, these patches can become
injured daily just by standing. This results in an injury
that does not heal correctly and condition that can last months
or even years.
Alpha Chiropractic has found the Graston Technique to be a
very effective treatment in breaking up the scar tissue, allowing
the plantar fasciitis to heal correctly. Soft tissue fibrosis
and chronic inflammation are treated with the Graston Technique’s
instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization. Once the patches
of scar tissue are broken up, proper healing and a reduction
in pain usually result.
As with most injuries, plantar fasciitis is best treated early.
The longer the injury goes untreated and the more severe it
becomes, treatment will become more involved. If you are experiencing
symptoms of plantar fasciitis, seek help from an experienced
provider as soon as possible. Call Alpha Chiropractic today
to resolve your plantar fasciitis at (480) 812-1800.
Further information on the Graston Technique can be found
Back to Chiropractic Resources
Dr. Carson Robertson is in private practice at
Alpha Chiropractic. His clinic services the
chiropractic, massage therapy, and physiotherapy
needs of the Chandler, Ahwatukee, and Gilbert area.
He has a special interest in athletics, running, and
soft tissue injuries. Carson Robertson DC can be
reached at (480) 812-1800.