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How do I deal with plantar fasciitis?

Holman Chan, MD
Foot & Ankle Surgery
Many cases of plantar fasciitis can be helped with stretches and orthotic gel inserts, says Holman Chan, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Sunrise Hospital. In this video, he also discusses the surgical options for plantar fasciitis.
Christopher C. Bell, MD
Sports Medicine

Plantar fasciitis can be a lengthy and frustrating injury to deal with. There are different theories on why we get it and what we can do to treat it. Some believe it is because of weakened foot muscles from wearing too-supportive shoes all the time, though this has not been proven.

Most of the time, with stretching and strengthening exercises, it will resolve. Stretching involves improving Achilles flexibility, as well as that of the big toe, especially improving its extension (pointing up towards your head) flexibility. In addition, strengthening the foot muscles helps as well. Using your toes to curl up a towel that had been laid out flat on the floor can help. Pushing the ball of your foot at the bottom of your big toe into the floor can also help.

In the acute phase, wearing arch supports can help as well. You may need to do this in order to allow the pain to settle down while you rehabilitate it. You can find good arch supports at your local running store; they usually carry the best ones there. Very few people need custom made orthotics.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.