The plantar fascia is a ligament which runs along the bottom of your foot and connects the heel bone to your toes. It acts as a shock absorber, supporting the arch of the foot and it arises in the innerpart of the heelbone where it is interwoven with other ligaments that insert into the toes.
When one rises onto the toes, this fascia is tightened and the longitudinal arch of the foot is stabilised. Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammation caused by excessive stretching or a tear of the fascia, and is the most common cause of heel pain for which professional help is sought.
Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar Fasciitis often leads to heel pain, heel spurs and/or arch pain. It can be caused by a number of factors, one of which is being overweight or pregnant which places increased pressure on the fascia.
You can also develop plantar fasciitis if you have high arches, are flat footed or suffer from tight achilles tendons.
The condition is also common in some sports people, especially those who play sports with a forced thrust or quick turns such as gymnastics or basketball. Runners and those who wear shoes with inadequate support are also at a higher risk.
Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis
Those who suffer from plantar fasciitis will experience a gradual onset of pain, usually in the bottom of the heel. The pain can be more pronounced first thing in the morning, after prolonged standing or if you have been sitting or lying down for a while.
Plantar fasciitis usually only affects one foot, although it can occur in both feet simultaneously. A pressure pain is felt along the ligament, especially with the big toe bent upwards.
Plantar Fasciitis Treatment
The aims of treatment for plantar fasciitis should be to relieve inflammation in the heel and to allow any tears in the plantar fascia to heal.
The OPPO Plantar Fasciitis Heel Reliever (product code 5466) is one way to help with the pain associated with plantar fasciitis. It is an innovative device with interchangeable massage bars that is designed to provide optimum relief for the tension of the plantar fascia and the surrounding tissues.
The massage bars have different densities from soft (green), medium (blue) to hard (orange) and can be selected according to the severity of the symptoms. The reinforced heel cups can then be placed into your shoe to help relieve pain during walking or running.
The heel cups provide superior shock absorption and help to correct bone alignment, while the pressure relieving soft pads absorb the impact of the heel directly.
The OPPO Plantar Fasciitis Reliever Heel should be used in association with treatment from a physical therapist.
A qualified therapist will help to design a series of exercises to strengthen your lower leg muscles, helping to relieve the pressure on the plantar fascia. Physical therapy treatment can also help to stretch your plantar fascia and achilles tendons.
Most people recover completely from Plantar Fasciitis within a year, although the condition should not be ignored as without treatment it can become a chronic condition that changes the way that you walk and cause further injury to your feet, knee, hips and back.
The OPPO Plantar Fasciitis Reliever Heel is part of the OPPO Footcare range and is available for £20.99 per pair. The OPPO Footcare range also includes Arch Pads, Heel Pads and Insoles which help to relieve foot pain and improve the stability of the foot.