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Acupuncture For Plantar Fasciitis

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of pain in the heel. It happens when the thick band of tissue that is located across the bottom of the foot, connecting to your heel bone and your toes becomes inflamed.


Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

You will know if you have plantar fasciitis if you experience a stabbing pain usually occurring early in the morning when you first step down. As you move throughout the day, the pain might decrease but also it could return after sitting for long periods. The pain usually will get worse after vigorous exercise. 


Causes of Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a bit like a shock absorbing violin bow. It supports the arch of your foot, but if tension and stress in the bowstring become too much then small tears can occur. Also repetitive movement and stretching can cause tearing and the fascia to become inflamed. It’s unclear what causes every case of plantar fasciitis, but the cause is usually through excessive exercise and irritation of the fascia. 

Risk factors of Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis arises due to inflammation of the plantar fascia, but there are other factors that can come into play when developing this condition:

  • Age – This condition is most common in those 40-60 years old.
  • Certain forms of exercise – Exercises such as cross country running, jumping activities, ballet dancing and aerobics can aggravate the plantar fascia and can contribute to early onset of plantar fasciitis.
  • Foot mechanics – The way your foot is shaped (flat footed or high arched) can have an effect on the development of plantar fasciitis. Even the way you walk or stand can over time, develop this condition more quickly. 
  • Obesity – Extra weight can put stress on your heel which in turn can aggravate the plantar fascia. 
  • Work life – Those who work in labour intensive jobs and stand on their feet all put unwanted stress on their heel. Wearing the right, comfortable shoes for plantar fasciitis or specially designed plantar fasciitis shoes (orthotics) may help relieve the pain. 

Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis

Sometimes if the plantar fasciitis pain is severe, a doctor will recommend a steroid injection. It reduces pain and inflammation in the problem area for about a month and helps healing. Shockwave therapy can also be used to “shock” the plantar fascia tissue and promote healing through sound waves. 

Most of the time however, injections aren’t necessary and therapies such as physical therapy, massage and acupuncture can be used. Physical therapy will help you to strengthen the muscles around the plantar fascia so that you can create a base of stability for healing to take place. 

Acupuncture has been proven to be an effective treatment of plantar fasciitis. There are many foot acupuncture points that can be stimulated to help relax the muscles around the plantar fascia. Acupuncture can also help reduce inflammation and is a natural form of pain relief. 

If you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis, it may be a good idea to try out acupuncture therapy at an acupuncture clinic in San Diego or one in your local area. Plantar fasciitis is no walk in the park, but there are treatment options available.


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