If you have a sharp pain on the bottom of your heel you are most likely suffering from a condition known as plantar fasciitis.

Plantar fasciitis heel pain is caused by damage to a ligament on the bottom of the foot called, you guessed it, the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a thick band of ligament tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, from the heel bone to the ball of the foot. The primary function of the plantar fascia is to help to support the arch of the foot.

Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

If you develop plantar fasciitis you will likely feel a sharp or stabbing pain on the bottom of the heel. Sometimes the pain extends into the arch area of the foot, but heel pain is the most common symptom of plantar fasciitis.

The pain is usually the most severe when you first get up in the morning or after you’ve been resting for a while. Sometimes the pain improves when the fascia gets "loosened up", but it usually increases again if you’ve been on your feet too long.

Why Do I Have Plantar Fasciitis?

Most people who suffer from plantar fasciitis don't recall any type of acute injury. The heel pain usually starts gradually and then becomes more severe. Contributing factors to plantar fasciitis heel pain include having a low or high-arched foot, improper shoes, over-exertion, and recent weight gain.

Treatment Options for Plantar Fasciitis

If you think you may be suffering from plantar fasciitis there are a few things you can try to help alleviate the pain. Start by making sure you are wearing supportive shoes, such as running shoes, as much of the time as possible. Avoid flat shoes or sandals if at all possible.

Stretching out the calf muscles can also help to reduce the stress in the fascia. You can also try taking an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen or naproxen. In addition, you may want to cut back on any activities that may be putting too much stress on your feet.

One of the most important things about plantar fasciitis is not to ignore it and let it get out of control!

If you try the things listed above and your pain is still increasing, then you should definitely visit a podiatrist. Getting medical treatment early on in the course of the problem is always much easier than waiting until you can hardly walk!

Get Relief from Plantar Fasciitis Heel Pain by visiting our Long Beach Podiatry Office.  Our podiatrist and foot care professionals have the experience and expertise you can trust.

Call 562-433-0478 for your foot exam today!


Richard H. Graves, DPM
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Podiatrist, Sports Medicine Specialist
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