Our feet are the foundation we are built upon, they quite literally hold us up and support the rest of our bodies which, in relation to their size, is quite an undertaking. As an increasingly busy society, we tend to stay on the go and take our feet for granted, so it’s no surprise that foot and ankle problems are among the most common injuries reported. According to an article in the Huffington Post, millions of Americans report foot and ankle injuries each year, and the number has increased significantly over the past five years.
One of the most common reported foot problems is plantar fasciitis. Affecting the ligament that connects the heel bone to the toes and supports the arch of the foot, or the plantar fascia, the condition causes severe pain in the arch and heel when the ligament is overworked. In many cases, the pain develops gradually and is worse upon waking and stepping on the foot affected (or both feet, if that is the case), after long periods of standing or rising from a seated position.
While prevalent in athletes, especially runners, walkers and hikers, plantar fasciitis affects people from all walks of life. Those who work at a job standing or walking all day, such as cashiers and servers are also at higher risk. Plantar fasciitis can be attributed to a variety of different causes including the following:
- Excessive Pronation, or your feet roll inward too much when you walk
- Flat feet or high arches
- Walking, standing or running for prolonged periods of time, especially on hard surfaces
- Being overweight
- Non-fitting or unsupportive footwear
- Tight achilles tendons or calf muscles
- Degenerative disorders such as arthritis, neuropathies, and chronic inflammation
So what can be done to treat plantar fasciitis? There are many treatment options available, and not everything works for all patients. However, with a good treatment plan and proper care, the odds of marked improvement are very good, with more than 90% of patients improving within 10 months of starting treatment. Plantar fasciitis responds quite well to conservative care and the most important thing is to start a regimen right away. Icing the area immediately will help to bring down swelling, be sure to protect the foot with a wrap to stabilize the area and rest it. Your doctor may suggest a variety of exercises to strengthen the areas around the foot or suggest massage therapy.
Chiropractic neurology provides patients with an alternative to traditional medicine, which many times treats the pain with medication and even the suggestion of surgery in severe cases. By using chiropractic adjustments and other treatments, chiropractic neurology serves as a natural way to treat the underlying cause of the pain and inflammation without resorting to drugs or surgery.