Plantar fasciitis is heel pain caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue starting from the heel and extending under the ball of the foot. Common causes of plantar fasciitis include obesity, pregnancy, unsupportive footwear, excessive walking or standing, forefoot malalignment, and heel spurs. In cases of hyperpronation or hypersupination, the plantar fascia can be easily overstretched or even torn.
The symptoms are usually worse in the morning, immediately after waking up. In mild cases, foot-stretching techniques can provide the necessary relief. Ice packs can also reduce the inflammation, pain, and discomfort. In more severe cases, custom orthotic supports, orthopedic shoes, and physical therapy can help.
Symptom #1: Foot Discomfort
In most cases, foot discomfort is an indicator of plantar fasciitis. The pain is usually felt at the bottom of the foot in the area between the heel and the toes. The pain is usually described as a soreness and tenderness.
The pain usually increases when pressure or stress is put on the arch of the foot. In mild cases, stretching the heel and foot arch to warm up the foot muscles may decrease the pain.