Plantar fasciitis affects many people across the country, especially anyone who spends extended time on their feet. If you walk, hike, bike or stand during your job, you may be at an elevated risk of this disorder.
The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot, according to the Mayo Clinic, and overuse can lead to pain in the heel, arch or ball of your foot. Pain from plantar fascists may be most severe in the morning, but because the foot warms up during the day, you may find discomfort subsiding. Overall, being proactive about any issues can lead to relief, even if you are living with a chronic form of the ailment. Here are some of the best ways you can limit or decrease pain caused by plantar fasciitis.
1. Stretch the fascia
Tightness can be an uncomfortable problem, and research published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports found that stretching is one of the best ways to alleviate any issues. One helpful position is to stand against the wall with your heel on the ground and toes up, gently leaning on the affected foot. This slowly stretches the fascia and can help it feel looser. The key is to be gentle to avoid exacerbating the issue. Do this stretch in the morning or throughout the day to address discomfort.
2. Treat the arch
After you’ve stretched, you may find that icing your arch provides extra benefit. Use a frozen water bottle or therapy ball and roll your foot back and forth over it. This works to massage the fascia and relieve tension. Only ice after stretching because over-exerting a very cold tendon could cause more issues.
3. Focus on the calves
Tightness anywhere in your body can contribute to plantar fasciitis simply because it makes your body work harder when doing regular activities like walking or standing. Stretching your calves in particular can lead to limited pain. A nice stretch on this part of your body during the day can be helpful, especially before any exercise.
4. Consider your footwear
Arch support can be another major consideration when it comes to plantar fasciitis. Old sneakers or uncomfortable shoes can contribute to pain and discomfort, and investing in the right orthopedic support can make a big difference. A supportive insert can be very helpful, as can wrapping your foot during the day. Likewise, a plantar fasciitis sleeve keeps your foot well-protected. By supporting your arch, you limit the problems that can lead to prolonged pain.
5. Wear something at night
The early morning is often when many people experience the worst issues caused by this ailment, and wearing something while you sleep can alleviate future problems. The Nice Stretch Original splint gently stretches your fascia, preventing stiffness or soreness the next day. It is comfortable and sleek but still offers tremendous relief from discomfort. In this way, you can be proactive about limiting plantar fasciitis pain without sacrificing too much of your day.
6. Get a massage
Arch support and regular stretching are helpful ways to alleviate some of the causes of plantar fasciitis and limit the ailment’s impact on your daily life. With time, you can recover within a few weeks or months, although some individuals have more serious or chronic symptoms.
Opting for a massage is one way to reduce pain and discomfort throughout the treatment process. This can be done by a professional, a physical therapist or a loved one who has an understanding of the condition. This relaxes tightness and tension and can be a way to unwind after a day on your feet.
7. Ice your fascia
Aside from a frozen water bottle or other item, simply using an ice pack is another way to find relief from your plantar fasciitis pain. Again, you don’t want to stretch with a frigid tendon, but applying ice while reading or watching television can offer similar benefits as a massage.
8. Stay off your feet
Even with stretching, icing or protective equipment, continuing to spend time walking, standing or exercising can prolong your plantar fasciitis. If you are experiencing serious discomfort or have the opportunity, spend a day or two off your feet to give your arches a chance to recover and recuperate.