Everyone seems to know what plantar fasciitis is, and if they don’t they have probably heard of heel spurs which is sort of another name for it. The reason so many have heard of it is that it is just so common. Plantar fasciitis hurts on the plantar surface of the heel and is usually worse when getting up from a period of rest, especially first thing in the morning. There is debate about the relative amounts of inflammation or degeneration that is present and causing the symptoms. The main cause is too much load on the plantar fascia, the structure that supports the arch of the foot. Overpronation may be a factor in some. Factors that cause this strain are being on the feet too much, being overweight, or being too active.
The best treatments for plantar fasciitis is to reduce the load in the plantar fascia with foot orthotics and lots of stretching. If that does not help initially, we then use some physical therapy interventions. That will take care of the vast majority of them, but for those that don’t we have options like shock wave therapy, platelet injections or surgery. There many myths and many snake oil options for plantar fasciitis, so be wary.