Plantar Fasciopathy (also referred to as Plantar-fasciitis or Plantar-fasciosis) is a condition related to pain on the plantar fascia (see image above). It is an irritating condition which affects around 1% of the population (around 600,000) and it is the most common cause of heel pain we see. It is more common in middle ages, people whose work involves lots of walking, 2.5x more likely to occur to females and 5x more likely to occur if your BMI is >30.
What are the symptoms?
Pain with first few steps in the morning.
Pain is usually localised to the bottom inner side of the heel but can stretch across the whole fascia.
More painful after prolonged rest.
Aggravated by prolonged walking/running.
Tends to have a gradual onset usually related to changes in activity levels; however it can be insidious.
What is causing it?
Biomechanical issues such as fallen arches, tightness in the calf muscles, weakness in the calf and ankle muscles, overuse/degenerative changes to the fascia.
How can I fix it?
Reduce pain (e.g. wear comfortable footwear) and reduce aggravating activities.
Stretching of the calf and fascia.
Self-massage to the calf and fascia.
It is essential to build muscle strength in the calf and surrounding ankle stabilising muscles.
Build load tolerance to return to sport or previous painful activity.
Symptoms usually start to ease around 4-12 weeks, however rehab can last up to 3-6 months; there is no quick fix!
Use a tennis/soft tissue ball to self-massage the fascia to help with pain.
Use ice if sore after activity (rolling the foot on a frozen bottle of water works great!).
Wear shoes with a slight heel (or insert gel heel cups) to offload the fascia when walking.
Take micro breaks when walking long distances to give yourself a rest.
Try to avoid wearing high heels frequently.
Try activities such as swimming or cycling which are less irritable to the fascia.
Seek GP or Pharmacist advice on pain killers if required.
For more information Plantar Fasciopathy – click here.
Contact us to book in and see one of our specialist Physiotherapists for some expert advice and treatment to get you on the right road to recovery.
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