Chronic heel pain when you get out of bed each day could be a sign of a condition called plantar fasciitis. Dr. James C. Graham of Graham Family Foot & Ankle Care in Effingham, Illinois, is an experienced podiatrist and foot and ankle surgeon who understands how to treat the painful symptoms of plantar fasciitis so you can get relief. Call or schedule a consultation online to learn about treatment options.
Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain for men and women between the ages of 40 and 60. Runners, ballet dancers, and other types of athletes may feel plantar fasciitis even earlier in life as a result of activities that cause excessive heel strain. When the ligament that connects your heel bone to your toes — and also supports your arch — becomes weak, swollen, or irritated, you feel pain when you first stand up or begin to walk after getting out of bed.
Plantar fasciitis can affect men or women who stand on their feet many hours each day, or simply as a result of wear and tear over the years. Too much tension and stress on the ligament (fascia) in the arch of your foot can result in small tears in the ligament. This causes stabbing heel pain or pain across the bottom of your foot.
Sometimes the cause of plantar fasciitis isn’t known, but many times there are risk factors involved that contribute to your pain. Some of these risk factors include:
Once Dr. Graham diagnoses your plantar fasciitis, he explains what you can do to alleviate your foot and heel pain. You may need to take a break from certain activities or exercises that are contributing to your pain so you can rest the ligaments in your feet and give them time to recover. Icing your heel may also help relieve the pain, and Dr. Graham may prescribe foot and calf stretches. At times a steroid injection may be necessary. A surgical option is the endoscopic plantar fasciotomy for severe cases.
Additionally, you may need to wear more supportive footwear or firm shoe inserts (foot orthotics) to help support your arches and relieve strain. If you have heel pain when you first stand up in the morning or after standing for long periods of time, call or go online for an appointment. Dr. Graham is an expert at determining the cause of your pain and recommending treatment for prompt relief.