Heel Pain

Plantar Fasciitis

Heel pain from plantar fasciitis can be a severe, long-standing and debilitating problem that can interfere with a person’s daily life at home, work and everywhere in between. It is often referred to as heel spurs, even though a physical spur in the heel may or may not be present.the future.

What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis describes damage to the plantar fascia, a thick band of connective tissue that attaches to the bottom of your heel and then spans across your arch and foot. It helps to maintain the shape of the arch by supporting the bones, joints and muscles. When the fascia is strained, it becomes damaged and inflamed. This is known as plantar fasciitis.

Common symptoms of plantar fasciitis include:

Mild to severe stabbing heel pain

Swelling of the fascia, especially at the bottom of the heel

Worst pain when taking the first few steps in the morning

Increased pain intensity when standing after rest

Often the pain is on-and-off throughout the day

Damage to the plantar fascia can worsen over time if it is not effectively managed. It may result in a partial tear of the fascia, which will require a longer recovery. Our team will help prevent the injury from worsening, as well as ensure that you have an accurate diagnosis, as other conditions may mimic the symptoms of plantar fasciitis, like Abductor Hallucis Tendinopathy.

a Person holding their heel

The Cause

If you picture the way that the plantar fascia spans the arch, every step does place some tension on the fascia as we move through the motion. While our body is used to the way that we normally use plantar fascia, when we begin to place significantly higher loads on the fascia or increase the intensity of our activities, microtears can develop that cause damage and inflammation.

The increased loads may result from:

Increasing the amount of physical activity you’re doing

Increasing the intensity of the activity that you’re doing

Wearing unsupportive footwear

Stabilising and supporting the feet and body

Flat feet, or a foot type that puts more tension on the fascia

Increased weight

It is important to not only look at the symptoms of plantar fasciitis but also the cause so that the fascia doesn’t keep getting damaged in the future. This happens when the cause isn’t a one-off activity but associated with the biomechanics of your feet.

How to treat plantar fasciitis

If you’re experiencing heel pain, we recommend that you book in with our podiatry team – the earlier the better to reduce the risk of the injury worsening. While at home, you can try:

Avoiding the activity that triggered your pain and symptoms

Wearing better supportive footwear

Ice & elevate the foot to help reduce swelling and painful symptoms

Our team will perform a biomechanical assessment to understand the severity and cause of your heel pain. We’ll then create a custom treatment plan where the initial focus will be to reduce your current symptoms, get you out of pain, and help the fascia heal. Following this, we’ll help you prevent this injury from happening again. We may use:

Strapping – to temporarily reduce the strain on your fascia and help alleviate pain

Orthotics – to help reduce the tension on your plantar fascia while you walk

Stretching – to help reduce and prevent the onset of painful symptoms in the future

Strengthening – to help improve your foot and leg function, supporting the plantar fascia

Footwear – if necessary, making the switch to shoes that offer better support for your feet

We care about your lower limb health.

Book online or get in touch
with us today

We care about your lower limb health.

Book online or get in touch with us today