Living with Plantar Fasciitis

After a long night’s sleep, you pull back the covers, swing your legs over the side of the bed, and take your first step of the day. This simple act that most people take for granted is an excruciating step into the painful reality of plantar fasciitis for you.

You’re one of about 2 million other Americans who suffer from an inflamed ligament at the bottom of your foot. It hurts most when you try to walk after you’ve been off your feet for a while, like after a long plane trip or when you get up in the morning.

It’s most common among people who are on their feet all day or tend to overuse their feet. And because excess pressure is the culprit, people who are overweight or obese are at high risk as well. Those are some things that cause it, but you may be more interested in hearing about how to fix it.

That’s where we come in. Our expert podiatrists, Dr. Daniel Preece and Dr. Darren Groberg, help our patients overcome their plantar fasciitis pain through a combination of lifestyle changes and medical interventions. From our practice in Salt Lake City, a branch of Utah Musculoskeletal Specialists, we relieve your plantar fasciitis with traditional treatments like custom-designed orthotics as well as cutting-edge technology like platelet-rich plasma and MLS laser therapy.

But first things first: Here are some things to try on your own. If you follow these tips, you have a 97% chance of overcoming your plantar fasciitis in about six months.

RICE

Because plantar fasciitis pain stems from the inflammation in your ligament, getting rid of the swelling will decrease your pain considerably. That’s why common-sense home remedies can make a big difference, in particular, the RICE method: rest, ice, compression, and elevation. 

This proven strategy — especially the resting part — is an important component in your plantar fasciitis treatment plan. The more you stay off your foot, the quicker the ligament will recover.

Medicine

Most people with plantar fasciitis find that an occasional dose of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) like ibuprofen can ease acute pain and help relieve the swelling that causes it. 

Massage

Plantar fasciitis may cause the surrounding muscles in your feet to tense up and exacerbate the problem. Gently rubbing — or having someone else rub — the bottom of your feet with particular attention to the arches can relax those muscles, so you don’t have to deal with the secondary symptoms as well as the inflamed fascia.

Stretches

Speaking of tight muscles, your calf muscles may also tighten up if you have plantar fasciitis. It’s helpful to make gentle calf stretches a part of your daily routine to keep those muscles warm and flexible. 

Likewise, stretching the arches of your feet by slowly pulling your toes toward you can help relieve the tension surrounding your plantar fascia.

Exercises

While rest is important to your treatment, so is controlled exercise specifically designed to strengthen the muscles and increase blood flow to the area. 

Our team can advise you on which exercises are beneficial and which to avoid. You can usually start with gentle foot flexes, toe curls, and even dexterity skills like picking up marbles with your toes. 

When you need professional pain relief

If you’ve tried these at-home methods to relieve your plantar fasciitis pain and can’t seem to resolve it, you may need more advanced treatments.

At Dan Preece, DPM & Darren Groberg, DPM, we use the latest technology to address your plantar fasciitis pain quickly and effectively. 

Sometimes all you need is a little extra support from custom-designed orthotics that slip into your shoes. 

Many people also find lasting relief from MLS® laser therapy, a noninvasive, painless treatment that stimulates healing deep within your tissues. 

If the damage to your plantar fascia is extensive, we may recommend the healing power of platelet-rich plasma from your own blood. Another regenerative treatment that triggers your body’s own healing is stem cell therapy derived from your own bone marrow. 

Plantar fasciitis can be mildly annoying or severely debilitating. If you’re struggling with the pain and are wondering how best to treat it, give us a call or request an appointment online today. 

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