Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that one in 10 people will experience in their lifetime. It occurs when the plantar fascia, the thick band of tissue that connects your heel to your toes, becomes inflamed. There are many reasons people develop plantar fasciitis, including wearing high heels, obesity, age, prolonged standing, and overuse. The pain from plantar fasciitis is often worse when stepping out of bed and may lessen as you begin to walk around. There are several signs that can indicate it is time to see a podiatrist for an evaluation. Symptoms of plantar fasciitis

Common Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

Pain in the heel of the foot when bearing weight and when you take the first few steps in the morning are typically the most common signs of plantar fasciitis.  

Other Signs of Plantar Fasciitis

  • Heel pain that lessens with activity but redevelops after sitting or resting for extended amounts of time
  • Pain that is more intense when not wearing shoes or when wearing shoes that offer little support
  • Pain that becomes more intense after prolonged activity
  • Pain that is present in one foot, not both
  • Pain and swelling in the heel of the foot
  • Pain that lingers for months and does not improve over time
  • Tight calf muscles or tightening of the Achilles tendons

Diagnosis and Treatment Options

If you are experiencing heel pain or other signs of plantar fasciitis, consult with an experienced podiatrist for a diagnosis. A podiatrist will examine your feet and may apply pressure to the plantar fascia to see if you feel pain there. Imaging tests are generally not needed to make a diagnosis. Once other causes of the pain are ruled out, a diagnosis can be made, and treatment options will be discussed. 

Possible Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis

  • Using anti-inflammatory medication to help reduce pain and swelling
  • Applying ice to the bottom of your foot for 15 minutes, three times a day can help with pain and inflammation
  • Using custom orthotics designed specifically for your foot can be worn inside your shoes to provide support
  • Resting after long periods on your feet or reducing your physical activity can help with pain
  • Switching to a lower-impact activity such as swimming can give your plantar fascia time to heal
  • Stretching the plantar fascia can help with pain and promote healing
  • Massaging the bottom of your foot by focusing on the plantar fascia can help relax the tendon and relieve pain
  • Using night splints from your podiatrist can be worn to stretch your foot while you are sleeping, so you can avoid pain in the morning
  • Using MLS laser therapy can accelerate healing and lessen pain
  • Having steroid injections can help reduce inflammation

Conservative and at-home treatments are often enough to provide relief from plantar fasciitis. In rare cases, surgery may be needed if the pain is severe. Surgery can be done to reduce tension by releasing the plantar fascia.

Are You Looking for a Plantar Fasciitis Specialist in Austin, TX?

If you are looking for plantar fasciitis care, you should reach out to an experienced podiatristAustin Foot and Ankle Specialists can help. Our office provides a wide variety of advanced, effective treatment options for all kinds of painful conditions. Ready to schedule an appointment? Contact us online or call our Austin office at 512.328.8900


Craig Thomajan
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Austin Podiatrist