When your feet hurt, the key to finding relief is targeting the source of your pain. But with 26 bones, 30 joints, and more than 100 muscles, ligaments, and tendons in each of your feet, there’s a lot that can go wrong. Arthritis? Sprains? Plantar fasciitis?
That’s why our team of specialists recommend that you visit Manhattan Podiatry Associates, PC, in Midtown or Downtown Manhattan at the first sign of trouble. We’re experts when it comes to diagnosing and treating foot problems so you can get back on your feet sans pain.
Below, we zero in on a common source of foot pain 一plantar fasciitis 一 and how to tell if you have it.
What is plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a common foot injury that affects your plantar fascia. More specifically, plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of your plantar fascia.
Fascia is a thin layer of connective tissue that surrounds every organ, bone, muscle, and blood vessel in your body. It also contains many nerves, making it a very sensitive tissue.
In the case of plantar fascia, this is the fascia that runs along the bottom of your foot. When this fascia becomes injured, damaged, or inflamed, it can cause severe pain due to the number of nerves in this tissue.
Signs of plantar fasciitis
Our team diagnoses plantar fasciitis through a review of your medical history and symptoms and a comprehensive exam. Imaging tests, such as X-rays, can help rule out other foot conditions, such as fractures.
You may, however, suspect you have plantar fasciitis if you notice:
1. Your feet hurt first thing in the morning
Foot pain in the morning is one of the earliest warning signs of plantar fasciitis due to a sudden stretching of your plantar fascia. While you sleep, the tissue shortens overnight, but when you place your foot down to walk, the sudden stretching causes pain.
2. Your feet hurt after standing all day long
Not only is pain in the morning common, but plantar fasciitis can also contribute to pain after prolonged hours of standing.
3. Your feet hurt after you’ve been sitting a while
Sitting in a chair for hours can give your feet a break, but the second you stand up, you feel pain as your plantar fascia stretches again.
4. You’ve recently increased your running mileage
Plantar fasciitis is a common running injury that develops as a result of overuse. If you’ve recently increased your mileage and notice foot pain, you may be dealing with plantar fasciitis. Ideally, you shouldn’t increase your miles per week by more than 10%, otherwise you increase your risk of sustaining overuse injuries like plantar fasciitis.
5. The arch of your foot hurts
Plantar fasciitis tends to cause pain in the arch of your foot or near your heel. This pain may continue for months. In addition to arch pain, you might also notice that your heel is swollen and your Achilles tendon is tight.
What if you spot these red flags?
Plantar fasciitis can quickly dash your exercise plans, but even more importantly, it can make simply walking from point A to point B painful and difficult. If you suspect you have plantar fasciitis, make an appointment with Manhattan Podiatry Associates and keep these tips in mind:
- Stretch your calf muscles
- Take over-the-counter pain relief medication, if needed
- Wear well-fitting shoes and avoid flip-flops
- Massage your feet
- Apply cold compresses
If we determine that plantar fasciitis is the source of your foot pain, we may recommend night splints, orthotics, modified exercise routines, cortisone shots, and more. We also offer extracorporeal shock wave therapy, a nonsurgical treatment that promotes healing, increases circulation in your plantar fascia, and helps alleviate the pain of plantar fasciitis.]
Don’t let plantar fasciitis keep you off your feet. To learn more about your treatment options, call one of our two convenient New York City locations or book an appointment online today