Plantar fasciitis, also known as jogger’s heel, is a common disorder that causes acute pain in the heel and the sole of the foot.
It occurs due to inflammation in the plantar fascia, a thick band of connective tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot and connects the heel bone to the toes. Repetitive stretching and tearing can cause the plantar fascia to become irritated or inflamed.
Plantar fasciitis can affect both men and women and is very common in runners and hikers. However, it most often affects active men between ages 40 to 70.
Apart from age, other factors that may increase your risk of developing plantar fasciitis include regularly indulging in activities that put a lot of stress on your heels, faulty foot mechanics, obesity, jobs that keep you on your feet for long hours and wearing shoes with poor arch support or soft soles.
Common signs and symptoms of plantar fasciitis are heel pain, inflammation, pain in the foot arch, difficulty walking or standing, limping, acute pain after brief weight-bearing activities and stiffness in the heel after long periods of inactivity.
Symptoms are often worst in the morning. In addition, it usually affects just one foot, but can be both at times. When you put your foot down on the floor, you will feel as if you have had an electric shock.
Plantar fasciitis can have a huge impact on your day-to-day activities. You can reduce the symptoms and discomfort with easy-to-follow home remedies and simple lifestyle modifications.
Given below are the top remedies.
- Before you get out of bed in the morning, stretch your feet, lower leg muscles, calf muscles and toes. While sitting up in bed, hold onto your flexed feet and gently pull them toward you for 30 seconds, release and repeat 1 or 2 more times. This will help minimize pain in the morning.
- Stand at arm’s length from a wall with your unaffected leg slightly bent at the knee and the affected foot behind you. Slowly and gently, press your hips forward while keeping both the heels flat on the floor. Hold this position for 30 seconds and then relax. Repeat this exercise in 2 sets of 10 repetitions, several times a week.
- Roll a frozen water bottle or a golf ball under the arch of your foot, starting from the front and working your way back. Apply a little pressure. Do this for a couple of minutes, once daily.
- Using your fingers, gently massage the lower part of your foot and heel with some warm coconut or sesame oil for 10 minutes. Do this a couple of times daily, especially before going to bed.
- Put 2 to 3 tablespoons of Epsom salt in a small tub of warm water.
- Soak your foot in this water for 10 to 15 minutes, twice a day. You can also massage the affected area to alleviate pressure.
- Do this a few times a week.
- Add 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder to a cup of milk. Heat it over a low flame. Add a little honey and drink it daily before going to bed.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of grated ginger in 1 cup of water. Boil it for a few minutes, turn off the heat and steep for 10 minutes. Strain and drink it while it is still hot. Drink 2 to 3 cups of this tea daily.
- Also, include ginger in your daily cooking.
- Add ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper powder to ½ bucket of hot water. Soak your feet in it for 10 minutes. Follow this remedy a few times daily. If you have a broken skin then don’t use this as it will burn and you will not be able to resist the burning pain. Use this remedy only if your feet is free from cracks.
- Some of the best anti-inflammatory foods are extra-virgin coconut or sesame oil, ginger, garlic, tart cherries, salmon, walnuts, almonds, berries of all types and sweet potatoes. This should be your regular diet.
- Limit the use of high-heel footwear and buy shoes that offer adequate arch support for your feet.
- Use lightweight arch support pads that you can wear around your foot for additional pain relief.
- Limit the amount of time you spend on your feet.
- When feeling pain, give your feet much-needed rest.
- Do not exercise on hard surfaces like concrete when you are experiencing pain.
- Do not use heating pads if there is pain as it will worsen the symptoms.
- Try wearing night splints while you sleep to prevent stiffness.
- Wear a walking cast on your calf to speedup the recovery time.
- Avoid going barefoot.Wear shoes even while walking around your house.
- Drink more water to improve metabolic processes in the body and facilitate cellular repair.
- Maintain a healthy weight to minimize stress on your plantar fascia.