Plantar Fasciitis Treatment in Visalia

IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR PLANTAR FASCIITIS EXPERT IN VISALIA, WE TREAT A  VARIETY OF INTERVENTIONS FOR PESKY HEEL PAIN

If you’ve ever experienced a piercing pain in the bottom of your foot the first thing in the morning, there’s a strong chance plantar fasciitis was to blame. Before you start taking pills, you should consider seeing one of our plantar fasciitis experts in Visalia.  As one of the most common causes of heel pain in existence, plantar fasciitis can strike people who exercise too much just as easily as those who wear the wrong pair of shoes. But whatever causes it, most patients would agree that it’s a pesky problem that they’d prefer to eliminate.

The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your feet and connects the heel bone to the toes. Its primary purpose is to absorb the majority of the stresses we put on our feet, but it has a limit: too much pressure or strain can damage the tissue and lead to inflammation in that region.

This inflammation results in the most typical symptom of plantar fasciitis: a stabbing pain near the heel that’s usually worse with the first few steps of the day or after standing for a long period of time. Plantar fasciitis is particularly common in long-distance runners, but can stem from repeatedly performing any weight-bearing activities or spending too much time standing every day. People who are overweight, older than 40, and those who have high arches or flat feet are also at an increased risk of developing plantar fasciitis.

As is the case with any other painful condition, trying to push through or ignore plantar fasciitis can go on to cause chronic (long-term) heel pain and may result in pain in other parts of your body if you alter the way you walk. The good news is that most cases of plantar fasciitis with some basic modifications, such as the following:

  • Limit or completely stop the activity that led to pain in the first place
  • Ice the bottom of your foot for 20 minutes, 3-4 times a day
  • Avoid walking around barefoot, which puts more strain on the foot
  • Purchase a new pair of supportive shoes with good arch support

If your pain doesn’t improve within a few weeks after making these changes, your next step should be to see a physical therapist, who can address the issue with a number of interventions and techniques. In addition to stretching and strengthening exercises, your treatment program is also likely to include manual therapy, in which the therapist uses their hands to perform a variety of movements and mobilizations to the muscles and soft tissue of the heel that will release muscle tension and reduce pain. There is strong evidence that shows manual therapy techniques to be beneficial for plantar fasciitis, including one study published last year, which concludes as follows:

According to reviewed moderate and high-quality randomized-controlled trials (high-quality studies), soft tissue mobilization is an effective modality for treating plantar heel pain (another term for plantar fasciitis)

In light of this information, we encourage you to seek out physical therapy if you’re experiencing any symptoms that suggest plantar fasciitis is present. Taking this step will put you on a path to recovery and a future with less pain.
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Physical Therapy for Chronic Ankle Sprains – Why You Should Consider It

 

The lower the location of a joint in the body, the more weight it’s responsible for supporting.  The ankles, then, have the tall task of supporting the entire body, and this is one of the main reasons they are injured so frequently.  Ankle sprains are the most common injury seen in the athletic population, and they have the power to throw a wrench in the spokes of any active person’s training.  They can also lead to a long-term cycle of re-injury, but all this can be avoided with a physical therapy program.

If you play sports, there’s a fairly strong chance you will sprain your ankle at some point.  Ankle sprains account for up to 45% of all sports injuries, and approximately 25,000 people sprain their ankle every day in the U.S.  The sport you play will also affect your odds, as the majority of sprains (41%) occur in basketball, followed by football and then soccer.  This mainly has to do with the movements that are common in each sport, and lots of jumping and cutting significantly increases the risk for ankle sprains.

Ankle sprains involve the ligaments of the ankle joint, which are flexible bands of tissue that connect one bone to another.  Ligaments are elastic and can be stretched to a certain length and then return to their original position, but they have a limit.  When any of the ligaments in the ankle is stretched beyond its maximum range of motion, damage will occur and result in an ankle sprain.  Symptoms will vary depending on the severity of the sprain, but usually include some—or all—of the following:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness
  • Stiffness
  • Instability

If you do experience an ankle sprain, the prognosis is usually quite good, and most people can get back to sports or training within about 4-6 weeks; however, the risk of a condition called chronic ankle instability (CAI) increases significantly after the first sprain.  This is why proper treatment from a physical therapist is necessary for a full recovery and to reduce your chances of experiencing another ankle sprain in the future.  Treatment programs are always individualized, but typically consist of RICE (rest, ice, compression and elevation), stretching and strengthening exercises, and balance and functional training.

Physical therapy is recommended for both initial ankle sprains and for patients that continue to sprain their ankles repeatedly, and research has shown that it’s effective in both cases.  The effectiveness of physical therapy and exercises was supported in a recent review of studies that concluded as follows:

For the treatment of acute ankle sprain, there is strong evidence for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and early mobilization, with moderate evidence supporting exercise and manual therapy techniques, for pain, swelling and function. Exercise therapy and bracing are supported in the prevention of CAI.

While it might sound like a single ankle sprain means a long-term series of problems, this is more likely to be the case if the injury is not managed properly from the start.  This is why you should see a physical therapist first and fast after your first ankle sprain to reduce your chances of future injury.

 

Plantar Fasciitis Treatment in Visalia

The most surefire way to address your heel pain is through a course of physical therapy

Tired of searching for plantar fasciitis treatment in Visalia and wondering who’s the best provider?  We understand.   Here’s more on this condition and how we can help.

Plantar fasciitis is a stubborn injury that’s generally considered to be the most common cause of adult heel pain.  Though long-distance runners may be most familiar with the condition, it can occur from a number of activities, and anyone who’s dealt with plantar fasciitis knows how frustrating it often is.

The plantar fascia is a thick, connective band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot and connects the heel to the toes.  It’s designed to absorb the regular stresses we put on the feet and is a rather tough structure, but when too much pressure is applied the tissue can get damaged, leading to inflammation and pain.

The most common symptom of plantar fasciitis is a stabbing pain near the heel that’s most noticeable upon waking up and after standing for too long.  Due to the repetitive stress long-distance runners put on their feet, they experience the injury most frequently.  But people who have flat feet or high arches, are overweight or regularly perform any other weight-bearing activity are also at increased risk.

Plantar fasciitis is also notorious for coming back after the initial symptoms start to go away, and 10% of patients have the condition for more than one year.  This highlights the importance of getting proper treatment early on to keep symptoms at bay and prevent the condition from progressing further.  The best way to do this is through a comprehensive physical therapy program designed to increase the strength and flexibility of the plantar fascia and surrounding area.  Treatment programs are developed based on each patient’s individual condition, abilities and goals, but will usually consist of the following:

  • Advice on how to select supportive footwear and/or shoe inserts that reduce stress to the plantar fascia
  • Strengthening exercises for the calf, ankle and foot
  • Stretching exercises to improve the flexibility of the ankle and plantar fascia
  • Pain-relieving modalities like heat, ultrasound and icing the bottom of the foot
  • Massage and manual techniques to release muscle tension and reduce pain
  • Taping the foot or using a night splint

Our physical therapists see patients with plantar fasciitis frequently and our treatments have been proven to work.  This is highlighted in the conclusion of this recent study:

The results of this study support prior studies that show faster recovery time for those who receive evidence-based physical therapy for their foot pain (from plantar fasciitis)

So if your exercise regimen or daily routine is being hindered by plantar fasciitis, it may be time to see one of our physical therapists if you haven’t already done so.  Our personalized treatment programs are your fastest ticket to a safe recovery and a return to the things you love.  Click here for our contact information.