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The Best Solutions for Treating Plantar Fasciitis Pain

Plantar fasciitis is the bane of runners, but they aren’t the only ones who suffer.  As many as 2 million people suffer plantar fasciitis each year, and that’s just the number of people who seek treatment. Many more likely suffer quietly and try to push through pain.

You’re at risk of developing this inflammation of the plantar fascia at the base of your heel if you have tight calf muscles or a very high arch. Those who are obese or increase their workouts at too quick a rate are also likely to develop the condition. Poor foot mechanics and unsupportive footwear contribute to the plantar pain, too.

When inflamed, the plantar fascia causes a stabbing pain that’s especially noticeable when you first get up out of bed in the morning. As you move during exercise, the pain may subside, only to come back with a vengeance when you slow down.

Treatment for plantar fasciitis pain is notoriously difficult. At Maryland Orthopedic Specialists, we offer some of the most advanced treatment options available at the Bethesda and Germantown, Maryland, offices. 

Don’t just keep doing what you're doing with the hope that the pain will resolve itself. Call today to take advantage of some of these best practices when it comes to treating plantar fasciitis pain.

Start conservatively

Resting from any activity that causes plantar fasciitis pain is a must. Just giving your ligament a break reduces inflammation and helps you heal. Of course, this rest is best when you notice the first signs of the pain, before the condition becomes chronic. 

Injection treatment

If you’ve come to us at Maryland Orthopedic Specialists, rest is likely not enough anymore. A steroid injection right into the belly of the plantar fascia relieves inflammation and pain, so you can get back to activity. But steroid injections don’t heal the overuse or foot mechanics issues that caused plantar fasciitis in the first place. Relief from steroid injections lasts only about a month.

You may do better with platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy. These injections don’t offer near-immediate relief like steroids, but they prompt healing.

PRP is a compound derived from your own blood. We take a conventional blood draw and spin it in a centrifuge to separate out the healing platelets. These cells contain amazing growth factors that prompt your body to initiate self-healing.  

When we inject the PRP directly into your plantar fascia, circulation and nutrients return to the ligament to foster recovery.

Physical therapy benefits

Physical therapy is especially helpful in long-term healing. Our physical therapy team at Maryland Orthopedic Specialists teach you exercises and stretches that further heal an inflamed plantar fascia. Physical therapy exercises don’t concentrate on just the heel itself, but also on the Achilles tendon and the lower leg muscles that contribute to plantar fascia pain.

If you’re a runner, your therapist also examines your running gait and recommends changes in your foot strike and/or footwear to prevent aggravation of the plantar fascia when you do get back to your sport.

Mechanical support

Sometimes we offer night splints to position your foot in a rested position while you sleep. This gives your plantar fascia an entire night of rest.

Most people sleep with their foot pointed downward, which only shortens the plantar fascia. Night splints keep your foot at a 90-degree angle, which gives the ligament a stretch. If you’re worried about distracted sleeping, the splint is comfortable and easy to wear.

If you have an especially high arch or other foot mechanical issue that seems to be contributing to your plantar fasciitis, custom orthotics may be an option. These inserts are made especially for your feet to prevent an irregular foot strike that exacerbates inflammation at the heel.

Don’t just live with plantar fasciitis or give up your favorite activities due to the pain. Call us Maryland Orthopedic Specialists to set up an appointment and learn how you can heal and get back to comfortable, daily activity and exercise in a short time without heel pain. You can also book online by clicking here.

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