Tag Archives: Plantar Fasciitis

physical therapy for plantar fasciitis pain

Physical Therapy For Plantar Fasciitis Pain

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physical therapy for plantar fasciitis pain

Does your foot or heel hurt with the first step in the morning? Does your foot hurt when you get up from sitting or driving for long periods of time? If the answer is yes, you may have plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is the most common type of foot pain. Plantar fasciitis is the irritation or inflammation of the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a thick dense connective tissue that attaches to the heel and ball of the foot. A related problem is a heel spur which is extra bone that may grow from the heel bone. This is in response to the plantar fascia being tight or inflamed, thus pulling on the heel bone.

Inflammation and microtears occur more commonly in sports that involve running, long distance walking, dancing, tennis, basketball and in non-athletes who spend long periods of time walking on unyielding surfaces. Patients with pes planus and heel pronation have an increased likelihood of developing plantar fasciitis because of the increased tension on the plantar fascia caused by these anatomic features. A tight gastrocnemius can result in heel pronation thereby making plantar fasciitis more likely. Cavus feet with relative rigidity also place more stress on the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia also tends to become more rigid with age making it less effective as a shock absorber and more likely to develop microtears.

Common Causes:

  • Too Rapid of an Increase in Exercise Program.
  • Change in Lifestyle (Active to more Sedentary) Causing Sudden Weight Gain or Sedentary to Active.
  • Muscle Tightness and/or Weakness.
  • Poor Biomechanics (movement) at the Foot and Ankle.
  • Inadequate Cushioning in Shoes or Inadequate Shoes.
  • Occupation with prolonged weight bearing on Hard Surfaces.

Plantar Fasciitis Symptoms:

People with plantar fasciitis complain of searing pain at the point of the fascias insertion into the calcaneus. This pain is at its worst with the first few steps upon arising in the morning or after a sustained period of being off their feet. The plantar fascia origin is often extremely tender to palpation. Pain is also increased after long periods of walking, climbing stairs or doing toe raises.

Finding Relief with Physical Therapy:

Physical therapy evaluation generally reveals an antalgic gait pattern especially when first beginning to walk. Often foot is pronated, gastrocnemius is shortened and there is severe pain with palpation of the inferior, medial heel. Most people can experience relief in just a few sessions. However, the longer the pain remains untreated, the longer it will take to heal. It can even become so chronic in some cases other non-conservative treatments are deemed necessary. If you are experiencing symptoms similar to the ones listed earlier you may have plantar fasciitis. If you are diagnosed with plantar fasciitis physical therapy can help you resolve your pain.

Physical therapists take the time to educate each plantar fasciitis patients on how to prevent a recurrence of pain. They provide preventative stretching programs that can be done at home, instruct on what to look for when purchasing new shoes, and if necessary, help patients adapt their current lifestyle to prevent re-injury.

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For relief at home before your evaluation try these!

plantar fasciitis stretch
Frozen Can Roll
Take a frozen food can and roll your foot forwards and back.

plantar fasciitis exercise

Towel Grab
Grab and pick up a towel or dishcloth using only your toes.

 

 

More Articles about Plantar Fasciitis:

Plantar Fasciitis

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What is Trigger Point Dry Needling?

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TRIGGER POINT DRY NEEDLING uses small, thin needles to stimulate underlying myofascial trigger points, muscular and connective tissues for the management of many orthopedic conditions, both acute and chronic. Physical therapists use dry needling as a safe, effective, and efficient treatment technique to release painful hyper-irritable spots within a band of skeletal muscle. By inserting a needle into the dysfunctional tissue, it often leads to a contraction of the muscle which then stimulates a release. This leads to a reduction of pain, improvements in flexibility and a restoration of normalized movement when combined with corrective exercises.

WHAT IS A MYOFASCIAL TRIGGER POINT?
A myofascial trigger point is a hyperirritable spot within a taut band of skeletal muscle that produces local or referred pain. The trigger point can lead to increased pain, decreased flexibility and decreased muscle function if not treated. Trigger point dry needling is a safe, effective and efficient treatment technique to release these painful spots.

WHAT TYPE OF PROBLEMS CAN BE TREATED?

Muscle dysfunction can be the primary or secondary contributing factor to many neuromusculoskeletal conditions, which can include:

•  Repetitive Stress Injuries
•  Tendonitis or Tendinopathy
•  Muscle Strains
•  IT Band Syndrome
•  Patellofemoral Dysfunction
•  Plantar Fasciitis
•  Neck Pain or Headaches
•  Rotator Cuff Impingement
•  Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
•  SI Joint Dysfunction
•  Sciatica

Dry needling

This treatment is NOT acupuncture. Modern dry needling is based on Western neuroanatomy and modern scientifi c study of the muscles and nervous system. This modality can only be done by trained clinicians.

If you are interested in Trigger Point Dry Needling, find a physical therapist near you and ask for more information.

Plantar Fasciitis

Hamstring Tightness and Plantar Fasciitis

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Hamstring Tightness_FBsize

Plantar fasciitis is classically characterized by pain in the central to medial plantar heel. It is thought to be caused by chronic inflammation of the plantar fascia due to repetitive strain and trauma to the fascia. There are many other purported causes including, calcaneal spurs and increased intraosseous calcaneal pressure, among others. Many studies have shown inflammatory and histological changes at the origin of plantar fascia and surrounding structures that are consistent with repetitive strain and degenerative changes including a thickening of the fascia.

Biomechanics has long been looked at when investigating possible causes to injuries. Alteration of the load bearing characteristics of the foot has been suggested by several studies to be the underlying problem in plantar fasciitis. Microtears and chronic degenerative changes result from the increased tensile stress places on the fascia due to the changes in biomechanics. Muscles tightness is one factor that can lead to changes in gait mechanics and load bearing of the foot. Hamstring tightness has recently been investigated as a factor in plantar fasciitis and has been shown to induce prolonged forefoot loading due to increased knee flexion during gait. A rapid progression through the contact phase of gait results from increased knee flexion and in turn increases forefoot pressure. The fascia is a fixed length ligament, so an increase in forefoot pressure results in increased tension at it’s insertion on the calcaneous. The increased time spent on the forefoot in gait leads to a chronic traction injury that is localized to the hindfoot insertion of the fascia; which is consistent with the symptoms of heel pain.

plantar

Biomechanical deficits have long been contributed to injuries. Only recently has hamstring tightness been shown to have an effect on plantar fasciitis. Hamstring tightness effects every step, resulting in a biomechanical deficit which may contribute to tensile overload of the plantar fasciitis. The recent studies suggest that all patients with plantar fasciitis should be evaluated for hamstring tightness. Physical therapy treatment for plantar fasciitis should include hamstring stretching.

More information about Plantar Fasciitis can be found in the PTandMe injury center.

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This information was written by Plymouth Physical Therapy Specialists. They are committed to using evidence-based treatments in their practice. This means that their therapists utilize the most current and clinically relevant treatments in their approach to rehabilitation. For more information click here.

common running injuries

Common Running Injuries

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Running can be great for your health, but if an injury occurs never be afraid to seek help. The best treatment for injuries for runners is early management and education on self care specific to the injury. We’ve compiled a list of common running injuries below. If you are experiencing lasting pain that affects your ability to complete your run or activities throughout your day, don’t modify your behavior – talk to your physical therapist.

IT (Iliotibial) Band Syndrome

  • Common Causes: Improper footwear, Increasing mileage and/or intensity too quickly
  • Symptoms: Usually occurs after a short period of running with sharp pain on the outside of the knee

For more information click here

Piriformis Syndrome

  • Common Causes: Increasing mileage and/or intensity too quickly, Poor running mechanics, Usually associated with weak hips and core.
  • Symptoms: Local pain and tightness in buttock with possible tingling or numbness down back of leg. Most noted during prolonged sitting.

Shin Splints

  • Common Causes: Improper footwear, Lack of flexibility in calves, running on hard surfaces
  • Symptoms: Throbbing or aching pain along the front of shin. Usually occurs during and/or following a prolonged run or walk.

For more information click here

Plantar Fasciitis

  • Common Causes: Improper footwear, Change in running surface, Calf tightness, increasing mileage and/or intensity too quickly
  • Symptoms: Deep ache and/or sharp pain in bottom of heel. Most commonly felt in the morning or following prolonged sitting

For more information click here

Runner’s Knee

  • Common Causes: Increasing mileage and/or intensity too quickly, Poor running mechanics
  • Symptoms: Swelling, Aching pain behind and/ or around kneecap, pain walking up and/or down stairs

Achilles Tendinitis

  • Common Causes: Improper footwear, Increasing mileage and/or intensity too quickly
  • Symptoms: Swelling, painful to the touch, lack of flexibility along the back of the lower leg close to the heel.

For more information click here

 

Improper Exercise Leads to Injury & Unexpected Results

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The actual amount of physical activity you need depends on your individual fitness goals, whether you are trying to lose weight, and how fit you currently are.  When your body starts to ache it is telling you that something is wrong.  Your body can accommodate to the ache, but eventually a breakdown will happen and while you accommodate your ache, weakness and lack of flexibility starts. Once you have a breakdown, pain will happen and more than likely you will stop training. We want to help you before you get to a breakdown.

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