713-467-8886

Podiatrist - Houston
1140 Business Center Drive Suite 510
Houston, TX 77043
713-467-8886
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For about half the population, waking up in the morning is a difficult enough task in and of itself, often requiring copious amounts of caffeine and perhaps the incentive of a delicious pastry to finally roll out of bed and begrudgingly take on a new day. The other half might be able to spring right into action, but parties from both camps are slowed when they experience intense heel pain first thing in the morning.

Meet the Plantar Fascia

Plantar FasciitisThe structural culprit behind morning heel pain is often your plantar fascia. This thick band of fibrous tissue runs lengthwise across the bottom of your foot and connects the heel bone to your toes. It acts essentially as a bowstring and helps the bones maintain an arch. When you step, the elastic ligament stretches and lengthens the arch of your foot. It also assists in absorbing force and bearing your bodyweight.

You Wouldn’t Like Planar Fascia when it’s Angry

Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that leads to sharp, stabbing pain with the first steps in the morning. After a few minutes of moving around, when your foot has become limber, the pain will subside, but it is prone to returning after you sit or stand in place for an extended period of time. This condition results from excessive tension placed upon the fascia, which then causes small tears in the fibrous tissue. Repetitive tearing and stretching leads to inflammation and irritation.

There are various risk factors that can lead to this condition, including:

  • Exercise – Plantar fasciitis is a common overuse injury that is often found in runners, although any activity that can place excessive stress on the heel will contribute to the problem.
  • Age – People between the ages of 40 and 60 are more likely to develop plantar fasciitis.
  • Biomechanics – The structure of your body, coupled with how it moves, can be a contributing factor as to whether you will have this condition or not. When someone has a high arch, flat feet, or an abnormal gait, his or her bodyweight is distributed in an abnormal fashion across the lower body. This can add extra stress to the ligament.
  • Weight – Being overweight places extra stress upon the plantar fascia, so it is important to maintain, or get down to, a healthy weight.
  • Occupations – Jobs that keep you on your feet for extend periods of time on hard surfaces (teachers, factory workers, nurses) can damage the plantar fascia.

Soothing the Angry Fascia

Before we begin treatment for this condition, it is important to perform an accurate diagnosis to ensure that your issue is not bursitis, Achilles tendinitis, a stress fracture, or any other issue that could also result in heel pain. Once we have established that it is, in fact, plantar fasciitis, our knowledgeable foot specialist will develop an effective treatment plan.

Most of the treatment options for plantar fasciitis are both conservative and generally successful in taking care of this ailment. A combination of the following measures will typically provide the relief and care you need:

  • Rest your feet by reducing, or outright stopping, activities that contribute to your heel pain. If you are an avid runner, switch to some low-impact exercises, like swimming or bicycling, to maintain your physical conditioning.
  • Ice your heel a couple of times a day to reduce inflammation and irritation.
  • Have Aleisha Allen, DPM, create a custom set of orthotics to address any biomechanical issues that create the condition.
  • Use strengthening and stretching exercises to increase the flexibility in your plantar fascia and Achilles tendon. Need ideas for stretches? Contact our office and we’ll help!
  • Night splints can prevent the plantar fascia and Achilles tendon from getting tight at night by gently stretching them while you sleep.

If you need expert care for any condition that results in foot or heel pain, Houston Foot Specialists is here for you. We offer a friendly staff, state-of-the-art treatment, and the expertise to eliminate your pain and get you back to enjoying the things you love to do. Schedule an appointment with our Houston, TX office by calling (713) 467-8886 or use our online form.

Please do not submit any Protected Health Information (PHI).

Call Today 713-467-8886

1140 Business Center Drive
Houston, TX 77043

Podiatrist - Houston, Houston Foot Specialists, 1140 Business Center Drive, Houston TX, 77043 713-467-8886