Do you have plantar fasciitis in the Chapel Hill, Raleigh, or Durham areas? If you do then you know it can be painful and limit your enjoyment of activities that are important to you. When the band that connects your heel bone to the toes, the plantar fascia, becomes inflamed it can cause a lot of pain. Plantar fasciitis is most prevalent in runners, obese/overweight individuals, pregnant women, as well as people that wear improper shoes with little or no support. Other likely causes and/or contributing factors may be too much standing, vitamin C deficiency, and a sudden change to increased activity. Likelihood of developing this condition increases between the ages of 40 to 70. Someone suffering from plantar fasciitis may experience stabbing pain in the heel and it generally is worse first thing in the morning with the first few steps of the day. The pain often reduces with continued walking, and it is not common to experience plantar fasciitis in both feet simultaneously. If left untreated, a heel spur may occur.
In order to make a proper diagnosis of plantar fasciitis, an exam must be performed. During the exam, your foot will be tested by performing reflexes, testing the muscle strength and tone, as well as coordination and balance. A structural evaluation will also be performed to check the knees, hips and pelvis. If there is poor weight distribution or improper gait plantar fasciitis can develop. To rule out any other possible causes, such as a heel spur, fracture, or subluxation, an x-ray may be taken.
Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis can be treated with soft tissue work. The goal is to restore full range of motion in the different joints of the ankle and foot while minimizing stress to the plantar fascia. It is also common to work on the muscles of the calf to improve flexibility. If spinal misalignments is contributing to the problem this will should be addressed.