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~ Dr. Phil Pinsker

 

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853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA, 15301

Podiatrist - Washington
853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
(724) 225-9469 - fax

Do You Feel A Stabbing Pain in the Heel of Your Foot?

Dr. Phil Pinsker treats patients complaining of heel pain on a daily basis at his Washington, PA, podiatric office and plantar fasciitis is one of the most common reasons for it. Plantar fasciitis, also sometimes referred to as heel spur syndrome, can develop for numerous reasons and cause a lot of pain and discomfort.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

To give you a bit of anatomy, the plantar fascia is a long ligament on the bottom of your foot that connects your heel to the front of your foot. It also plays a large role in supporting the arch of your foot. The plantar fascia is a ligament that is truly designed to withstand the stress we put on our feet, but can only handle so much pressure.

Plantar fasciitis develops when the stress and tension on the plantar fascia becomes too great. Small tears and repetitive stretching cause the ligament to become inflamed and irritated.

What are the Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis?

When diagnosing plantar fasciitis, Dr. Pinsker will often ask if you are experiencing one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Pain on the bottom of your foot near the heel
  • Stabbing pain with the first steps in the morning
  • Stiffness
  • Pain that develops gradually
  • Pain that returns after long periods of standing
  • Pain after getting up from sitting for a long time
  • Pain after exercise

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis? Am I at Risk?

Plantar fasciitis is an injury that can develop quickly and without a known reason. If you are experiencing some of the symptoms described above, here are several situations that increase the risk of plantar fasciitis:

  • Being overweight - adds extra stress to the ligaments in your feet
  • Women who are pregnant
  • Wearing unsupportive shoes
  • Age – plantar fasciitis is more common in people aged 40-60
  • Activities that put stress on feet such as dancing and long distance running
  • Beginning a new sport or activity too quickly or aggressively
  • Having tighter calf muscles that inhibit the flexing of your foot
  • Having faulty foot mechanics – being flat footed or having high arches add stress to the plantar fascia
  • Having an occupation that requires a lot of standing and walking on hard surfaces

Wearing poor footwear – thin soled shoes or shoes without adequate arch support will add stress to the plantar fascia. Wearing high heels on a regular basis also causes strain on your heel.

How is Plantar Fasciitis Treated?

Depending on the severity of the plantar fasciitis, there are several treatment options that Dr. Pinsker can choose from:

  • Rest – It goes without saying that avoiding the activities that caused the stress to the plantar fascia in the first place can start the healing process.
  • Icing – This is effective in calming down any inflammation and swelling. Put a water bottle in the freezer and then roll your foot over it for 20 minutes.
  • Anti-inflammatory medicines – Help to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Physical therapy to stretch and strengthen the plantar fascia.
  • Custom orthotic inserts to help distribute your weight evenly.
  • Night splints to stretch the plantar fascia while you sleep.
  • Surgical treatment – Discussed only after conservative measures have failed to be effective.

It is important to remind you that if you do have plantar fasciitis, ignoring it will only cause the problem to worsen. Not seeking treatment could lead to chronic heel pain. Pain in your feet often causes you to change the way you walk and leaving plantar fasciitis untreated could also lead to knee, hip and back problems as well.

Contact Dr. Pinsker today for effective treatment for your heel pain. Plantar fasciitis does not need to take over and disrupt your life any longer. Make an appointment today by calling (724) 225-7410 or visit our Appointment Request page