Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia band located underneath the foot’s arch and heel. The pain can be described as anything from a mild pain to “walking on glass”. Ouch! Why do we get plantar fasciitis and how can we treat and prevent it?
Plantar fasciitis can affect anyone and everyone. It develops when the foot’s arch drops repetitively as this causes the stretching and inflammation of the plantar fascia band underneath. People with high arches experience large degrees of foot drop when weight bearing so it’s no surprise that they may encounter plantar fasciitis in their lives. However, people with flat feet are not exempt from the condition! They are generally pronators, which means their feet roll inwards as they weight bear. This motion causes a lot of wear on the fascia band as well. In general, anyone who is overweight, on their feet for extended periods of time and/or wear safety shoes are especially prone to the condition regardless of their arch type. In fact plantar fasciitis affects over 10% of the population!
Treatments for plantar fasciitis are limited. One option is to have cortisone injections into the heel however there are many risks to this method including infection, skin tone lightening and “cortisone flare ups” (rejection from the body resulting in more pain). There have even been individuals reporting that there was no beneficial difference in pain levels after taking the injection. A much safer, non-invasive treatment to plantar fasciitis is having a pair of custom made orthotics made. The orthotic insoles are molded to the foot’s arch, supporting it when weight bearing to prevent any significant arch collapse. Once the arch is supported, the body can repair the inflammation as well as prevent any further damage. Custom made orthotics are not only the doctor’s recommended solution for plantar fasciitis, but also a great device to prevent it from ever occurring! Book an appointment with your family physician today to see if custom made orthotics are right for you!
— Raymond Li, Certified Pedorthist