It isn't hard to injure your feet, no matter the level of your athletic abilities. Stepping down from a sidewalk, routinely running or even strengthening exercises can tweak your feet slightly, causing serious pain or discomfort. If you deal with chronic foot pain that is interfering with your ability to be active, it's important for you to know you that don't have to suffer! To combat common foot injuries, all you need to do is arm yourself with information on how to treat and prevent these injuries.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when the band of tissue (plantar fascia) that connects your heel to your toes becomes inflamed or irritated. Inflammation or irritation can be sparked by something as simple as insufficient shoe support or overuse. It is a common ailment among runners, but can affect anyone who puts strain on their plantar fascia. The Mayo Clinic identifies common symptoms as
- Pain in the heel
- Pain that appears first thing in the morning or after long periods of rest
If you suffer from plantar fasciitis, you know first how how debilitating the symptoms can be. To help combat the inflammation that may be triggering the plantar fasciitis you should be fitted for shoes that offer the right kind of support for the shape of your foot. This may mean more or less arch support. A specialist in sports medicine will be able to help you determine the type of shoe you should be wearing. Once you have a shoe that offers sufficient support, stretching and strengthening your calves will also improve your inflammation and irritation.
If you begin these strengthening and stretching on your own and see little or no improvement, make an appointment with a sports medicine clinic. They will be able to customize your treatment to fit your specific needs. With their treatment plan and the right type of shoes, you should be able to prevent plantar fasciitis from reappearing.
Achilles tendonitis presents itself as extreme tightness or tension in the Achilles tendon. This condition is caused by stress on the tendon from overuse, improper footwear, increased physical intensity, and lack of stretching. The difference between Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis is that plantar fasciitis is limited to the bottom of the foot. Achilles tendonitis affects the bottom of the foot, the back of the foot and above the ankle. Stretching these areas will be particularly painful and difficult.
You can combat this injury by regularly stretching before and after intensive use. A physical therapist trained in sports medicine can give you a detailed list of stretches that can be used to ease and/or eliminate the pain brought on by Achilles tendonitis.
Don't let sore and painful feet prevent you from enjoying physical activity. It's also important to remember that you don't have to be an athlete to suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis. If you deal with foot pain on a regular or irregular basis, contact a physical therapist that specializes in sports medicine to rehabilitate your injured or irritated feet. They will be able to customize your care to get you back on your feet as soon as possible.