What are the best orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis?

6 April 2011 - posted by Dr Charlie Baycroft

Plantar fasciitis
 is an injury caused by overuse (it’s especially common in runners). The injury presents as heel pain and sometime pain under the arch of the foot.

What causes plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of the plantar fascia tendon. This tendon is the connective tissue that runs the length of the bottom of the foot.  When it becomes inflamed at its attachment to the heel bone, this results in pain on the bottom of the heel and sometimes also under the arch of the foot. The pain is often described as feeling “like a stone bruise”. It’s on set is usually gradual and it is often worst in the morning or after sitting for long periods.

An increase in activity, especially regular walking or running, can trigger heel pain. Other causes of stress on your plantar fascia include sudden weight gain (like pregnancy) or shoes that don’t provide enough support to the arch.

How to treat plantar fasciitis?

Orthotics have a very high success rate as treatment for plantar fasciitis. In a number of trials and studies, orthotics have been found to be the most effect form of non-invasive treatment.

What orthotics are best for treatment?

Because plantar fasciitis is caused by overuse of the plantar fascia, the orthotics used to treat it need to help distribute your weight evenly across the foot. Choose orthotics that provide heel and arch support as well as shock absorption.

Shock absorption is ideal for reducing the impact and pressure put on your feet. This is especially important when treating overuse injuries, like plantar fasciitis. This is great for both the healing process and the prevention of the condition.

Good heel and arch support provide the correct anatomical support for your feet. This means that pressure is distributed over the whole of your foot, ensuring there are no pressure points.

With less of your body’s weight on the plantar fascia, the tissue will heal quickly. Continued use of orthotics should help prevent the recurrence of plantar fasciitis and other overuse injuries.

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