Plantar Fasciitis 

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

The term ‘Plantar Fasciitis’ is Latin for “inflammation of the Plantar Fascia.” The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tisse that connects your heel bone to your toes, it is one of the most superficial structures responsible for maintaining the foot arch profile. Anything with ‘it is’ on the end means inflammation, therefore lantar faciitis is inflammation of the plantar fascia band.

Your Plantar Fascia has limited ability to elongate due to its lack of elasticity.  The ligament can tear on a micro level when you place too much traction on it, leading to inflammation, irritation and painful symptoms.  

Do I have a heel spur?

Heel spurs are often associated with Plantar Fasciitis, which is why, if you experience heel pain, you should find a suitable treatment for Plantar Fasciitis without delay. Heel spurs often develop when your body responds to the traction caused by your heel bone being pulled away from your plantar fascia ligament. Because the ligament doesn’t stretch, the bone will grow to ‘assist’ your ligament, resulting in a spur. Therefore, a Plantar Fasciitis heel support can help prevent heel spurs from becoming an issue in the first place.  

What Are The Symptoms?

Heel pain most commonly in the morning upon waking and prolonged sitting 

Limping or walking differently due to pain after prolonged walking 

Dull aching pain that can sometimes throb when resting 

Sharp shooting pains radiating up the inner side of the ankle in more chronic cases

Mild swelling under the heel which may be associated with redness 

Tight calf muscles that tighten very quickly after stretching 

Causes/risk factors

  • Over-use: too much sports, running, walking or standing for long periods
  • Weight gain: our feet are designed to carry a ‘normal’ weight.
  • Pregnancy (in the last 10 weeks)
  • Age: as we get older ligaments become tighter & shorter and muscles become weaker; the ideal circumstances for foot problems!
  • Unsupportive footwea
  • Walking barefoot: especially on hard surfaces like concrete or tiles Low arch/flat feet or over-pronation
  • Over-pronation: This is a condition whereby the feet roll over, the arches collapse and the foot flattens.

Fun facts about plantar fasciitis

The plantar fascia itself is one of the strongest structures in your body. Studies have shown up to 30 times your body weight can be loaded through the plantar fascia with heavy impact. Naturally the ‘weakest point’, therefore, is the attachment point to the heel bone.

If the problem has been present for a long time the heel bone will try to protect itself at the attachment by calcifying and giving the plantar fascia something better to “grip” on to. This is a heel spur, and in itself is not a problem, but if there is inflammation associated with the heel spur it can become very painful with walking.

Believe it or not, a vast number of cases of heel pain that are diagnosed as plantar fasciitis are not actually plantar fasciitis at all! This is because of the muscle and nerve interactions with the heel that may also produce similar symptoms, but require different treatment.

So, if your heel pain has not responded to traditional therapy, there may be something else that has been missed, and the podiatrists at Flawless Feet Podiatry & Laser clinic are trained to find these problems. Call us today to speak with a podiatrist if you have any questions about your heel pain.

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Treatment Options include Foot Mobilisation, Stretching, 
Biomechanics/Orthotics & Shockwave Therapy

Flawless feet offer several different clinic locations to meet the needs of our patients. Locations include:

Sydenham Clinic | 30 Sydenham Road | Sydenham | London| SE26 5QF

Covent Garden Clinic | Jubilee Hall Gym | 30 The Piazza | Covent Garden | London | WC2E 8BE

Croydon Clinic | 197a Shirley Road | Entrance In Valley Walk | Croydon | CR0 8SB

Call 02037138361  or   Book online Book online