Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis
Dr. Rachel Steiner

Everyone has plantar (the bottom of your foot) fascia, which is a thin
web like ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot.
It supports the arch of your foot and is a shock absorber when you
stand, walk, or run.  The American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society
define plantar fasciitis as inflammation of the fascia from too much
pressure that causes heel pain and stiffness. Symptoms include pain
when taking the first couple steps after rest, stabbing pain at the
heel and mid-foot area, pain after prolonged activity, and stiffness.

Plantar Fasciitis is most prevalent with people who stand on hard
surfaces all day or a job that requires a lot of walking. You are more
likely to development this condition if you are overweight because the
feet constantly have to absorb more force than they were designed to
do. Runners also have a higher risk due to the repetitive force or if
the calf muscles are tight which causes a decrease in ankle flexion.
People with very flat feet or extremely high arches are also more
prone to developing plantar fasciitis. If left untreated, the symptoms
tend to get worse and may cause knee, hip, and back pain from the
altered walking pattern that can develop due to extreme pain in the
foot. Wearing shoes that are not supportive of your foot or are too
rigid like steel-toed boots can also cause inflammation of the plantar

A quick self-assessment that might indicate you have plantar fasciitis
include answering yes to any of these questions: Do you feel pain in
the bottom of your foot after taking your first few steps in the
morning? It is painful when standing for long periods of time or after
sitting for long periods of time? Is your pain progressively getting

Plantar fasciitis is diagnosed by a medical professional such as a
medical doctor, podiatrist, or chiropractor through an examination.
They are numerous treatment options for plantar fasciitis that can
help relieve the pain that are non-surgical and are very successful
such as orthotics and therapy. These non-invasive treatments include
orthotics and therapy. As a chiropractor, I help my patients with this
condition through soft tissue work to break up any adhesions or spasm
that has formed. If needed, motion is put into the joints of the feet
and ankles to help increase flexibility, movement, and proper
alignment. Home exercises are then prescribed for the patient to do at
home on a daily basis. The exercises are given to increase range of
motion and to strengthen the surrounding muscles. Icing the area is
also helpful for the inflammation as well, which should be done in
20-minute increments and ice should never be applied directly to the

Plantar fasciitis normally does not go away if left untreated and
usually becomes worse. Chronic inflammation can cause stress and
tension to the heel bone that can result in bone spurs. As a result,
plantar fasciitis can be very difficult to cure completely unless
treated properly and the sooner the better.