5 Steps to Treating Plantar Fasciitis

5 Steps to Treating Plantar Fasciitis

Sometimes life is a big pain in the heel. Each time you take a step, sharp shooting discomfort can resonate from your feet throughout your whole body making your daily mobility a real challenge.

If this is something you’re struggling with you may be suffering from plantar fasciitis (planter fash-ee-eye-tuss).

Plantar fasciitis is when the ligament tissue band that runs from your heal to your toes as well as supports the arch of your foot becomes weak, swollen and irritated. There are many causes for this condition but thankfully, also many remedies to get you back to full form.

Some causes include:

  • Flat feet
  • High arches
  • Excessive pronation (feet roll inward when you walk)
  • Overuse such as standing, walking or running for long periods
  • Being overweight
  • Your Achille’s ligament and/or your calf muscle is very tight
  • Trauma to the area

These  5 steps to treating plantar fasciitis are a combination of approaches to relieve your pain, strengthen the fascia, and prevent future damage.

Stretch It

Before you get out of bed, stretching exercises will loosen up your contracted plantar ligament. These are easy exercises that take as little as five minutes for each foot.

The best way to stretch is by using a long piece of material. Use a stretchy band (sold in most sports stores) that you can wrap around the ball of your foot (right below the toes). Then, gently pull back the top of your foot (not your toes) without bending your knee.

If you do not have a stretchy band or even a long piece of an old t-shirt for instance, then simply bringing your toes to your nose, holding it for thirty-seconds, and then pointing your foot forward for thirty-seconds can do the trick. You can even ask someone to passively do the stretch for you making sure to support the heel with their opposite hand.

Numb It

Ice is such an easy, inexpensive and commonly used anti-inflammatory that works wonders on so many injuries.

For plantar fasciitis, dropping your heel and eventually your whole foot into a bucket of ice and water is the best way to cover the area. You can also hold crushed ice in a bag, a professional blue gel ice pack or even a package of frozen peas right up against your heel as well.

Ice your foot for about fifteen minutes in the morning and then again at night. If you can fit in a midday icing, go for it. This practice will enable your body to send much needed oxygenated, nutritionally packed blood to this hard to reach area that can sometimes impede healing when inflamed.

Touch It

Immediately after icing you’ll want to massage your heel. This is ground zero for plantar fasciitis even though the pain may be traveling along the bottom of your foot and into your toes.

Slow counterclockwise kneading with your thumb using fairly deep pressure for about five minutes could breakup adhesions in the ligament that may be causing it to constrict and inflame. Massage right after you ice because the ice makes the area numb so massage should not hurt.

Once you are done with the heel then do the same throughout the bottom of your foot where you’re feeling pain.

Get New Wheels

Plantar fasciitis can sometimes develop as a result of poorly fitted or very old shoes. Once your footwear loses its support then you are going to suffer. Try purchasing some new shoes with good heel support. Also, don’t rule out inserts or even custom made orthotics from a podiatrist.

Pineapple Med

Using a natural anti-inflammatory enzyme could offer a botanical approach to your plantar fasciitis pain instead of something synthetic that might cause side effects.

Bromelain is an interesting remedy as it comes from the tubular middle portion of pineapples. If taken after eating a meal its unique enzymatic structure is capable of assisting digestion of food proteins. However, if taken on an empty stomach it has shown to travel to high protein signal areas where it breaks down the very proteins causing inflammation.

One example of the anti-inflammatory effect of bromelain is reported by Natural News citing a 2006 study,

“The Rehabilitation Centre for Cardiovascular and Rheumatic Diseases in Saalfelden, Germany found that patients who are suffering from higher pain levels from osteoarthritis have found great relief from taking bromelain extract.”

 

Don’t let foot pain take over your life. Try these 5 steps to treating plantar fasciitis to see if you can avoid medication or even surgery and, instead, naturally get back to easy walking.

 

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/plantar-fasciitis-topic-overview, http://www.healthcentral.com/chronic-pain/c/240381/155985/5-fasciitis/, http://www.livestrong.com/article/402064-herbal-remedy-for-plantar-fasciitis/, http://www.naturalnews.com/039123_Bromelain_anti-inflammatory_enzyme.html



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