Why do people get plantar fasciitis?

Millions of people around the world suffer with plantar fasciitis, a common foot condition that may be extremely painful and frustrating. Understanding the underlying causes of this condition is crucial for preventive and efficient care, regardless of whether you are a passionate athlete, or a dedicated runner.

In this article, we examine the complex web of causes of plantar fasciitis and examine the elements that may contribute to the onset of this painful condition and the guide to selecting essential foot products for plantar fasciitis. We want to provide you with important knowledge on how to protect your feet and keep a pain-free walk by recognizing these factors.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Inflammation of the plantar fascia in your foot is known as plantar fasciitis. It is the most frequent reason for heel discomfort.

The plantar fascia, which connects your heel to the ball of your foot and your toes, is a powerful, fibrous attachment (like a ligament). It has the stretchiness of a strong rubber band. Your foot’s arch is formed by the plantar fascia, which also joins the bones in your foot.

When your plantar fascia is overworked or overextended, plantar fasciitis develops. Your plantar fascia may enlarge as a result of any injury. Walking and using your foot become painful due to this inflammation. Plantar fasciitis often affects one foot at a time, but it can also strike both of your feet at once.

If you have foot or heel discomfort that has persisted for longer than a week, see a doctor.

How Common is Plantar Fasciitis?

Approximately 2 million Americans are thought to seek treatment for plantar fasciitis each year. Additionally, plantar fasciitis is not restricted to any one age group or profession. Although it can affect people of all ages, people between the ages of 40 and 60 are more frequently affected by it. Running and dancing are two sports that put recurrent stress on the foot and are more common in athletes and those who engage in these activities. Healthcare workers and teachers, for example, who spend a lot of time standing or walking on hard surfaces, are also at a higher risk of getting this ailment.

Plantar fasciitis continues to be a serious problem for medical experts and people searching for therapy for foot discomfort because to its prevalence and consequences on everyday activities. Knowing how common this issue is highlights the need for efficient preventative measures, early intervention, and proper treatment to lessen the symptoms and enhance the quality of life for those with plantar fasciitis.

Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

  • Heel pain
  • Pain in the arch of your foot
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling around your heel
  • A tight Achilles tendon

Pain under your heel

What Does Plantar Fasciitis Feel Like?

The typical symptom of plantar fasciitis is an aching sensation in the heel or down the sole. Depending on what you’re doing or the time of day, the discomfort may alter. You might experience various kinds of discomfort, such as:

  • Pain after sleeping or sitting down and getting up. After a short period of walking, the pain normally disappears.
  • A dull, constant discomfort.
  • When you utilize the affected foot or apply pressure to your heel, you may feel a sharp or stabbing pain.
  • Your discomfort may momentarily subside if you exercise or move, but as soon as you stop, it usually returns.
  • Increased pain when getting out of bed in the morning or after sitting or resting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis can be brought on by anything that irritates or harms your plantar fascia, such as:

  • Being required to stand all day at work.
  • Engaging in sport.
  • Working out or exercising on a hard surface (such as a sidewalk or a warehouse floor).
  • Exercising without warming up or stretching.
  • Wearing inadequately supportive footwear (such as flip flops or flexible, flat sneakers).
  • When you’re at home, go barefoot or stand barefoot.

Plantar fasciitis may result from a number of medical disorders, including:

  • Tall arching feet
  • Wide feet
  • Obesity (or gaining over 15 pounds in a short period of time)

How is Plantar Fasciitis Diagnosed?

Plantar fasciitis will be identified by a medical professional after a physical examination. They will examine your foot and inquire about your problems. If there is any inflammation, your plantar fascia may be softly pushed to see how much discomfort you are experiencing.

Tell your doctor about the pain you are feeling while going about your usual activities. Inform them about the area of your foot that hurts and the times of day that are the most uncomfortable.

PF-Pain areas

What Tests Do Healthcare Providers Use to Diagnose Plantar Fasciitis?

Typically, a doctor won’t need to do any tests to diagnose plantar fasciitis. If they believe another problem or disease is the source of the discomfort, they may use imaging tests to capture photographs of your foot. You could need certain imaging tests, such as:

  • X-rays
  • Ultrasound
  • MRI

How is Plantar Fasciitis Treated?

Plantar fasciitis is typically treatable at home and with over-the-counter (OTC) medications.

Your doctor will advise you on ways to treat your symptoms and support your feet to lessen the chance that you’ll get plantar fasciitis again in the future.

The following are the most typical remedies for plantar fasciitis:

  • Over-the-counter NSAIDs – Pain and inflammation are lessened by NSAIDs, which include aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. Never take NSAIDs for more than 10 days straight without consulting a doctor.
  • Rest – For at least a week (if possible), refrain from engaging in the sport or activity that contributed to the plantar fasciitis.
  • Icing your foot – Twice daily, ice your foot for 10 to 15 minutes. Roll a frozen water bottle around the bottom of your foot to massage the swelling while covering it with a tiny towel to protect your skin.
  • Wearing supportive shoes – Put on a pair of supportive, solid shoes. Avoid wearing sandals, flip-flops, and other flat footwear devoid of inbuilt arch support. Don’t go about in bare feet.
  • Orthotics or shoe inserts – You can add extra arch support to your shoes by adding inserts. Your doctor might suggest pre-made insoles that you can buy over-the-counter or custom-made orthotics that are designed to fit your foot’s unique shape.
  • Immobilization – A few weeks of wearing a walking boot (also known as a walking cast or a pneumatic cam walker) will stabilize your foot and relieve pressure on your plantar fascia. How long you will need to wear a boot will be specified by your provider.
  • Massaging and stretching – You will be shown stretches and massage methods you can use on your foot and calf muscles by your medical professional or a physical therapist.
  • Corticosteroids – Drugs used to treat inflammation include corticosteroids. A corticosteroid (like prednisone) may be injected by your doctor into your plantar fascia.
  • Platelet rich plasma (PRP) – PRP is typically injected to treat and mend injuries.
  • Extracorporeal pulse activation technology (EPAT) – A type of shockwave therapy is EPAT. To enhance blood flow to your plantar fascia, your healthcare professional will use focused acoustic waves (sound waves). This helps it heal more quickly.
  • Percutaneous needle tentomy – Your doctor will insert a needle into your plantar fascia via your skin during a percutaneous tenotomy. Your body sends more blood to the area than usual, which promotes the plantar fascia’s innate capacity for healing.

Plantar Fasciitis Surgery

Usually, you won’t require any further therapies beyond those mentioned above to treat your plantar fasciitis symptoms. Surgery is extremely uncommon. The two most typical surgical procedures are:

  • Gastrocnemius recession – To relieve strain on your plantar fascia, the surgeon will stretch your calf muscles.
  • Plantar fascial release – To alleviate some of the additional stress, your surgeon will create very small incisions (cuts) in your plantar fascia.

You’ll be told by your doctor or surgeon what kind of surgery you’ll require to treat plantar fasciitis.

Using a percution massage gun to do a foot massage

How Can I Prevent Plantar Fasciitis?

The easiest approach to avoid developing plantar fasciitis is to limit your foot usage. In general:

  • Stretch both before and after working out.
  • After vigorous exercise or activity, give your feet some time to relax and heal.
  • Put on supportive footwear.
  • Avoid barefoot travel on hard surfaces.
  • Every six to nine months (or after you’ve walked or run between 250 and 500 miles in them), you should replace your sneakers.

You might not be able to avoid plantar fasciitis if you have a medical condition that increases your risk of getting it.

How Long Does Plantar Fasciitis Last?

Your symptoms should start to get better as soon as you start treating your plantar fasciitis. The length of time it takes for your plantar fascia to recover, however, could be anywhere from a few weeks and a few months.

Try the same at-home remedies you previously employed if you start to feel better but then your symptoms return back. If your symptoms seem different or worse than before, consult your doctor.

Will I Need to Miss Work or School if I Have Plantar Fasciitis?

If you engage in frequently triggered plantar fasciitis, you might need to take a few days off of work or school while you recuperate. If your employment needs you to stand all day, be sure to let your doctor know about your daily activities.

For at least a week, you should refrain from participating in sports and other activities that impose strain on your feet. Before starting your tough workout, speak with your doctor.

When Should I see my Healthcare Provider

Visit a medical professional if:

  • You experience foot or heel pain that doesn’t go away on its own after a week.
  • Two weeks of treatment don’t result in a reduction in your symptoms.



Numerous factors, such as bio-mechanical problems, excessive use and physical activity, weight gain and obesity, footwear preferences, age, and specific occupational considerations, might contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis. Effective treatment and prevention of plantar fasciitis depend on having a thorough understanding of these underlying factors. People can lessen their risk of getting plantar fasciitis and the pain and discomfort that comes with it by correcting poor foot mechanics, wearing the right footwear, maintaining a healthy weight, incorporating rest and recovery into physical activities, and getting early intervention when necessary. With this information at their disposal, people can make educated decisions to advance their general health and well-being as well as their feet, which will ultimately result in a superior quality of life free from the restrictions of plantar fasciitis.