Super Bowl 50 wasn’t just a victory for Peyton Manning and the Broncos over the Panthers, it was also a personal victory for Manning over a foot condition that plagues many of our patients at Great Neck Family Foot Care: plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a long band of tissue that stretches from your toes to your heel on the bottom of your foot. Sometimes the plantar fascia gets small tears in it or becomes inflamed. When this happens, you will experience heel pain—either sharp shooting pains, an aching pain or both. A burning sensation is also not uncommon. The pain is usually worse when you first step out of bed in the morning and then lessens as you walk around and stretch out the plantar fascia.
Causes and Treatment
If you’re Peyton Manning, one cause of plantar fasciitis is overuse—sports and activities that are high impact on the feet like running and football can lead to this condition. People who have flatfeet are also more prone to plantar fasciitis and being overweight can also be a contributing factor.
It’s important to see one of our foot and ankle surgeons, Dr. Alec Hochstein or Dr. Diana Gagliano, to be sure that plantar fasciitis is the correct diagnosis and to find out the best treatment options for you. The podiatrist may recommend some home care, which may entail icing your heel several times a day, cutting back on your physical activities to give your heel a rest and taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug such as ibuprofen to relieve pain. Other avenues of treatment include:
- Physical therapy and stretching exercises. Stretching the calf muscle can help reduce pain.
- Custom orthotics and padding. Orthotic devices can help correct underlying problems like flatfeet that may be causing the plantar fasciitis. Padding may reduce pressure and pain on the heel. Strapping is another method of reducing pressure on the fascia.
- Night splints. This helps keep the plantar fascia stretched while you sleep and lessen morning pain.
- Removable walking cast. If the foot doctor feels that immobilization is necessary in order for your foot to heal, this type of cast may be ordered.
- This is only required in a small percentage of extreme cases.
Don’t let plantar fasciitis keep you off the playing field. Contact our Great Neck office for an appointment at your earliest convenience and start yourself on the road to relief. If you are unable to make it into the office, remember we now make house calls.