The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that connects the front of the foot to the heel, supporting the arch of the foot and acting as a shock absorber. When the plantar fascia becomes inflamed, it results in a condition known as 'plantar fasciitis', which is one of the most commonly-reported orthopaedic complaints.
The plantar fascia naturally stretches as the foot moves but, if this stretching is excessive or too forceful, the tissue can become inflamed, causing plantar fasciitis. This common condition results in pain in the heel and arches and can also cause heel spurs, which are calcium deposits that cause uncomfortable bony protrusions on the underside of the heel bone. Over time, the arch of the foot can collapse completely, a condition known as 'flat foot'.
The pain caused by plantar fasciitis can be severe, extending across the bottom of the foot to the inside at the meeting-point of the arch and the heel. Patients usually experience the worst pain after a long period of rest and/or first thing in the morning: this is because the plantar fascia has contracted and returned to its original shape. The pain may subside during normal daily activity but that certainly doesn't mean that the underlying problem has gone away.
There are a number of ways to alleviate the symptoms of plantar fasciitis, such carrying out regular stretching exercises. Wearing shoes with cushioned heels, of which there are a number of styles available from Foot Orthotics, can also help, as they absorb the shock the foot experiences each time the heel strikes the ground when walking.
Foot Orthotics also supply Tuli's Gaitor insoles, which offer proven therapeutic value to patients diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. The insoles, which deliver both lateral and medial support to the arches of the feet, are crafted from state-of-the-art carbon fibre, making them ultra-light and comfortable. They also provide much-needed shock absorption and cushioning to the midfoot and heel.
Please browse our website to find out more about plantar fasciitis and the products Foot Orthotics can supply that will alleviate the symptoms of this painful condition.