Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that can cause mild to severe pain along the bottom surface of the foot. The pain is often more prominent after taking the first few steps out of bed or going for a jog.
The good news is that plantar fasciitis, in many cases, can be treated through non-invasive means. The effectiveness of non-invasive treatments for plantar fasciitis is well documented. However, a complete examination of the feet and lower body is necessary for a personalised and effective treatment programme.
Limiting motion is an important part of treatment programmes for plantar fasciitis during the initial stages. This is done by reducing the weight placed on the plantar fascia ligament. Properly weight balance to the feet is great for pain management and allows the ligament to heal properly.
Ice therapy is another form of treatment that is becoming common in pain management. It involves applying an ice pack or iced water bottle to the bottom of the foot to reduce inflammation and treat muscle tissue damage. Ice therapy can also be very effective as part of a complete treatment programme.
Stretching is an important part of treatment programmes for plantar fasciitis. For example, when the calf muscles are too tight, the foot’s movement is limited at the ankle joint as its ability to lift the toes up is limited. This means that during normal walking, the foot hits the ground too flat and the arch will collapse under bodyweight, which can further stress the plantar fascia ligament. Hence, it is essential to ensure that exercises, like calf stretches, be incorporated into your daily activities to limit plantar fascia tension.
High-load strength training that focuses on the plantar fascia ligament can also be beneficial in treating the condition. A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports highlights that this form of training can provide quicker pain relief and improve function. An example is toe curls with a towel under the toes that allows the arch in the foot to elevate.
Use of Foot Insoles
A study Hilda Alcantara Veiga Oliveira of the Federal University of São Paulo (Rheumatology Division) established the effectiveness of foot insoles in treating plantar fasciitis.
Foot insoles are able to provide the greatest corrective support to the feet due to the fact that they maintain the foot arch during all phases of walking. When combined with stretching and other forms of treatment, foot insoles can be very beneficial in the long term.
MASS4D® insoles have a proven track record of effectiveness during the treatment and recovery phases of plantar fasciitis. MASS4D® prevents the plantar fascia from excessive stretching and holds the feet in best posture to restore the foot arch and allow the ligament to heal from conditions like plantar fasciitis and heel spurs.
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Reference: Silvester M. (2017) Calf Stretching in Correct Alignment. An Important Consideration in Plantar Fasciopathies. Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies: 2017, Vol. 21, pp. 212-215
Reference: Oliveira H. A. V., Jones A., Moreira E., Jennings F., Natour J. (2015) Effectiveness of Total Contact Insoles in Patients with Plantar Fasciitis. The Journal of Rheumatology: March 2015, Vol. 42, No. 5, DOI:10.3899/jrheum.140429
Reference: Rathleff M. S., Mølgaard C. M., Fredberg U., Kaalund S., Andersen K. B., Jensen T. T., Aaskov S., Olesen J. L. (2014) High-load strength training improves outcome in patients with plantar fasciitis: A randomized controlled trial with 12-month follow-up. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports: September 2014, DOI: 10.1111/sms.12313
People often wonder if there’s a cure for flat feet. While it is tempting to seek out a permanent solution for the condition, it helps to know which treatment is the most effective in getting results.