Mornings are beautiful! Fresh hopes, a new start. Many people believe that the first thing you do or face is very crucial to decide the fate of the day.
What if the first thing that you experience in the morning time while you attempt to put your first foot down is pain? Its not a choice between a splendid feeling to start a new exciting day or a stabbing kind of pain in your foot that warns you against taking next step? But, if it happens that it has become a regular affair in morning time or every time you step? Get cautious, it can be plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia beneath your foot that acts as a shock absorber much like a shock absorber in automobiles. Whenever one lands on foot it spreads the weight of the body evenly and most humbly on your foot and thus prevents any sudden whip of load on feet.
Plantar fasciitis happens due to repetitive straining injuries and is common in runners, adventurous hikers. It can be an occupational hazard for people needing long standing hour in their jobs like teachers, cooks or even homemakers.
Planter fascia is a connective tissue sheath that runs across the plantar or ventral aspect of foot across heel to toes. Due to repetitive (micro) trauma or injury because of varied causes it can get irritated and eventually inflammation sets in. Due to this inflammation, a person feels pain while putting weight on foot.
The pain is usually felt around heel when you put your foot on ground after waking up in the morning or after rest for couple of hours. The stabbing pain in heels initially gets resolved with few steps but it may last for hours or entire day or months if not treated.
As it’s said, a stitch in time saves nine; this pain can be dealt in time and usually the inflammation and pain gets resolved. Else this can get chronic and difficult to treat.
Usual causes of plantar Fasciitis
Long standing hours
Excessive running, hiking
Using improper or worn out shoes
Walking bare foot especially on concrete (hard) surfaces for long
Flat foot is one biological parameter that predilect one to plantar fasciitis.
As in hand, human foot also have an arch in foot similar to a bow (teer-kamman) in shape. This plantar fascia acts like its string. In flat foot, this gets stretched excessively and produces symptoms like pain, iritation, numbness if lateral plantar nerves get involved.
Even in high arched foot weight distribution gets jerky and hampered ,result in production of similar symptoms. There may be formation of heel spurs in chronic cases that makes conventional treatment difficult.
Icing. If inflammation is acute, icing for 25-20 minutes couple of times yields good results.
Deep massage on foot. Place a ball (preferably tennis ball) underneath your foot, start rolling it for few minutes. Massage this way alleviates pain, increases circulation and relaxes the stretched plantar fascia
Ultrasound. Conventional ultrasound or extracorporeal shockwave have shown to give good results in relieving pain.
Stretching. Sit with legs outstretched. Place a towel/ theraband underneath the ball of your toes and both ends in your hand. Pull it with hands so that you feel a nice stretch in calves muscles (located at the back of your legs)
Proper shoes. Always wear shoes that properly supports your foot if you have active lifestyle or long hours of standing.
Inhibit from wearing high heels until the symptoms subside. Else high heels may worsen your pain.
Though in chronic state, steroid injections given short term relief from pain and surgical removal of heel spurs are possible options, but it is always better to avoid undergoing the knife.
Stick to this simple ways and continue to always put you best foot forward.