If you’re experiencing heel pain, you’re definitely not alone.
Chances are, you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis, a common kind of repetitive strain injury afflicting runners, walkers, hikers, and really anyone who stands for a living. It affects more than 2 million people a year and it’s something that easily treatable.
In fact, it’s the most common condition that Paul Betschart, DPM, treats each year.
“This is commonly misdiagnosed by other doctors as heel spurs or other things,” Dr. Betschart says. “It’s fairly easily treated conservatively if the right method is employed.”
He explains that plantar fasciitis occurs when the strong band of tissue that supports the arch of your foot becomes irritated and inflamed.
Plantar Fasciitis can be permanently treated by putting the patient in a good custom foot orthotic. The insoles of an orthotic cushion and protect thefoot from the aggravating shock of each step, and also support the arch to prevent the plantar fascia from stretching further so it can heal.
“The ultimate goal is to solve the problem with the custom orthotic,” Dr. Betschart says. “Usually, we will treat someone with acute symptoms with cortisone injections and physical therapy and oral inflammatories to get the patient initially better and relieve the symptoms. Then, the custom device should keep them good forever.”
While the condition can affect people of all ages, it’s most common in active people, both men and women, who are ages 40-60.