One of the very common ailments of the foot is plantar fasciitis. It is usually caused because of sports like running, hiking, walking and soccer. Dancing or standing on a hard surface for a long time can cause plantar fasciitis which causes hurting heels. People who are overweight or have flat feet or high arches, and those who don’t wear shoes that provide proper support to feet are prone to risks of plantar fasciitis. Elderly women too are at higher risks. The plantar fascia is a flexible band of the tissue underneath the sole. It forms the arch of the foot and connects the bones of the toes with the heel bone. Constant wear and tear or any damage can cause inflammation in the plantar fascia, which ends up in pain, stiffness and burning sensation at the bottom of the foot. If you have plantar fasciitis, you will notice that the pain is worse in the morning – the time when you use your feet after a prolonged period of rest. Symptoms of plantar fasciitis are usually not severe, but the condition can restrict your movement. Calcium deposit on the heel bone can also be a risk fact of plantar fasciitis – in this case, you might need surgery.
In this article, we talk about some natural remedies for plantar fasciitis:
1. Wear the right shoes
Avoid wearing shoes that strain your plantar fascia. Wear moderate or low heels and prefer wearing laced footwear. Avoid wearing high heels or flats. Opt for shoes that offer support and cushion to your heels and arches, or simply add Protalus insoles for plantar fasciitis to your regular shoes. Those who involve themselves in regular physical activity should change their footwear regularly.
2. Deep tissue massage
Getting a deep tissue massage can be helpful in easing pain caused by plantar fasciitis. It involves the application of pressure on deeper muscle tissues like fascia, Achilles heel and calf muscles. This technique of massage helps in releasing muscle tension and reduces pain. Initially, the massage might make you feel a little sore. The results will be felt after a few days. Deep tissue massage is helpful in terms of improving blood circular in the plantar fascia.
3. Ayurvedic remedies
Eating anti-inflammatory foods like garlic, ginger, berries, turmeric and leafy greens can help in dealing with plantar fasciitis.
You can get splints to relieve pain caused by plantar fasciitis. Splints keep your toes pointed when you sleep. You can wear them for quicker recovery after a triggered pain. It ensures that the tissue inside the heel is not squeezed. You could also strap your heels with sports strapping tape in order to relieve pressure.
5. Ice pack after rest
Give your feet some rest and try not to walk for long distances or stand for too long. Do some stretching of the plantar fascia in order to ease the pain. After taking some rest, apply an ice pack to the area. You can do this a couple of times a day for around 15 minutes in order to reduce pain and seek comfort
6. Do a few stretching exercises
Some stretching exercise can help in relieving pain caused by plantar fasciitis. You could do a towel stretch by looping a towel around your foot while trying to pull your toes towards you. Avoid bending your knees while doing this exercise.
You could also opt for a wall stretch. This exercise helps in strengthening calf muscles. Stand with your feet together and put your palms against the wall. Try and take big steps forward while keeping the gap between your front and back legs. Shift your weight with the leg which is in the front. While making movement, make sure that your back leg is straight and your heels are firmly put on the ground. Then, lean forward and hold for 30 seconds. The stretch should be felt at the back of the rear leg.
Another effective exercise for relieving pain caused by plantar fasciitis is standing on an inclined plane or slanting board so as to allow your calves to stretch properly.
You could also try rolling the arch of your foot over a round object like a rolling pin, a drink can or a tennis ball. Do this exercise while sitting down and use both your legs for rolling. This will help in improving stability and balance.