5 Nonsurgical Solutions to Plantar Fasciitis Pain

Plantar Fasciitis, Shoe inserts, issues, surgery

If you feel a stabbing pain in the bottom of your foot near your heel when you step out of bed in the morning, don’t fall back into bed! The pain should decrease as you move more. If it returns after standing for a long time or when you stand up after sitting for a while, you may have plantar fasciitis, a condition that commonly afflicts runners and others on their feet for long periods, people who are overweight, and people who wear shoes without proper support.

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue that connects your heel with the front of your foot. This ligament — called the fascia — supports the arch of your foot, so when you strain it, the tissue becomes weak and irritated. If you strain it repeatedly, it can develop small tears that may cause pain and swelling.

You might think surgery is required to fix the problem, but don’t despair — surgery is usually a last resort for this condition.

At Podiatry Care in Totowa and Paterson, New Jersey, Dr. Yitzchak Cohen is an expert in treating plantar fasciitis without surgery. There is no one treatment that works best for everyone, but most cases clear up within a few months with one or more of these five nonsurgical remedies.

Medication

Various anti-inflammatory medications help reduce the pain in your foot. Dr. Cohen can also prescribe corticosteroid injections if your pain is severe or does not respond to other medications. The steroid should ease your pain for at least a month and keep the inflammation down as well.

Physical therapy and stretching

A common treatment for plantar fasciitis pain is stretching and physical therapy. Exercises such as toe, foot, and calf stretches can help strengthen your plantar fascia, and Dr. Cohen can put together a program that you can fit into your daily routine.

Taping and night splints

Taping your foot is a fairly simple way to relieve the pain associated with plantar fasciitis. Dr. Cohen can use athletic or kinesiology tape to ease the tension and stress on your fascia. The tape reduces the movement of the ligament, which gives it a chance to rest. Once he shows you how to properly apply the tape, you can do it on your own at home.

Dr. Cohen may also recommend a night splint. This simple device stretches your calf and the arch of your foot while you sleep so it’s not so tight when you wake each day.

Shoes or shoe inserts

Another solution to your plantar fasciitis pain is new shoes with good arch support and plenty of cushion in the sole. Proper footwear should ease the stress on your foot and allow it to rest.

Shoe inserts often help patients continue normal activities with minimal pain. You can try arch supports and gel inserts, and Dr. Cohen also can provide a prescription for custom orthotics — designed to give your feet exactly the support they need where they need it.

Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT)

A newer treatment for plantar fasciitis is shock wave therapy, which uses energy pulses to shock your plantar fascia. These waves cause microtrauma to the tissue, which stimulates blood flow and initiates the healing process in the tissue. Dr. Cohen usually recommends this treatment for chronic plantar fasciitis only after previous treatments have failed to bring relief.

If you’re waking up in pain every day, you don’t have to live with it and you don’t necessarily have to resort to surgery. To discuss nonsurgical options to address your plantar fasciitis with Dr. Cohen, call 862-205-5180 or book an appointment online now.

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