Plantar fasciitis (PF) is a common foot condition that affects more than 3 million people in the U.S. It is characterized by intense heel pain, particularly with the first steps taken in the morning. In this article, we will explore what it feels like to have plantar fasciitis, how it can interfere with your life if you have it, and the causes behind this debilitating condition.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, connecting your heel bone to your toes. Its primary role is to support the arch of your foot and absorb the shock generated during walking and running. When this tissue becomes inflamed or irritated, especially when it becomes chronically inflamed, it leads to a condition known as plantar fasciitis.
What It Feels Like
Plantar fasciitis typically presents with a sharp, stabbing pain in the heel, particularly when taking the first steps after getting out of bed in the morning. PFpain can also occur after prolonged periods of sitting or standing. It's often described as a burning or tearing sensation in the heel, which can be quite debilitating.
The pain tends to gradually improve as the day goes on, but it may return after long periods of standing or walking. Some individuals also experience pain along the arch of the foot. The discomfort can range from mild to severe, with some people finding it difficult to walk or engage in daily activities due to the intensity of the pain.
Interference with Daily Life
Plantar fasciitis can significantly disrupt your life, both physically and emotionally. The persistent pain in the heel can make even simple tasks like walking or standing unbearable. This may lead to a decrease in physical activity, which can have a cascading effect on a person's overall health and fitness.
The pain and limited mobility associated with plantar fasciitis can also lead to emotional distress. Many individuals with PF report feeling frustrated, anxious, or depressed due to their reduced ability to engage in their usual activities and hobbies. It may impact your social life, work performance, and overall quality of life.
Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
Several factors contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis. Understanding these causes can help individuals take preventive measures and seek appropriate treatment:
1. Overuse or excessive strain: One of the most common causes is overuse or placing excessive strain on the plantar fascia. This can result from activities like running, walking long distances, or standing for extended periods, especially on hard surfaces.
2. Foot biomechanics: Abnormalities in foot biomechanics, such as flat feet or high arches, can put extra stress on the plantar fascia and increase the risk of developing PF.
3. Age and weight: Plantar fasciitis is more common in middle-aged and older individuals, as well as in those who are overweight or obese. Excess body weight places additional pressure on the feet and can exacerbate the condition.
4. Footwear: Wearing shoes with inadequate arch support or poor cushioning can contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis. Wearing flip-flops or other shoes that do not have a strap across the back can irritate the bottom of your foot as well.
5. Tight calf muscles: Tightness in the calf muscles can pull on the Achilles tendon, which in turn affects the tension in the plantar fascia.
Plantar fasciitis is a painful foot condition that can have a significant impact on a person's life. The intense heel pain and associated limitations in mobility can be challenging to cope with. Understanding the causes and seeking timely treatment can help manage and alleviate the symptoms of plantar fasciitis.
If you suspect you have plantar fasciitis, we would love to help you. We have had great success resolving plantar fasciitis pain for people just like you.
You can call our office at (417) 598-0080 or just click the button below to schedule an appointment online.
This information should not be substituted for medical or chiropractic advice. Any and all health care concerns, decisions, and actions must be done through the advice and counsel of a health care professional who is familiar with your updated medical history.