The weather is warm. The flowers are blooming. Your outdoor activities have increased. And, ouch, the bottom of your foot really hurts! That pain could be Plantar Fasciitis – inflammation and stress of the plantar fascia.(The ligament that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your toes and heel bone.) Plantar fasciitis (PF) is one of the most common causes of heel pain and for some reason PF and warm weather seem to go together. Is Plantar Fasciitis more common in the summer? Let’s take a look to learn about how warm weather can affect plantar fasciitis – the causes, symptoms and treatment.
Causes of Plantar Fasciitis in the Summertime
Here are 2 ways summertime weather can affect plantar fasciitis symptoms:
- Activity – Most people are more active in the summer – exercising, walking and running more- and that repetitive activity can put stress on your heels. When the tendons in your heels become weak and stressed, inflammation can occur causing plantar fasciitis symptoms to appear.
- Shoes – People trade in their shoes and boots for flip-flops, sandals and going barefoot in the summertime. Going barefoot and these warm weather shoes provide much less support, which can put more strain on your muscles and tendons.
Other Contributing Factors of Plantar Fasciitis
- If you are a runner or participate in activities with a lot of jumping, or you’re overweight, these factors can cause stress on the plantar fascia resulting in swelling, inflammation and even small tears in the fascia
- A job or hobby that requires a considerable amount of standing can irritate the ligament
- The incidence of plantar fasciitis increases in those over 40
- The swelling and pain from arthritis in the toes can alter how you walk resulting in stress and pain on the bottom of the foot
- High heels. A sad but true fact, those fashionable shoes can irritate that tendon on the bottom of your foot
Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis
- The pain is on the bottom of your foot, near your heel, or in the arch of the foot
- You have a sharp, burning pain when you get out of bed in the morning and after you’ve been sitting for a while
- The pain goes away after you’ve walked around
- The pain is worse after, but not during, exercise
Left untreated, plantar fasciitis can cause long-term discomfort and pain.
Treatment Options for Plantar Fasciitis
- Daily stretching of the calf, Achilles tendon and plantar fascia
- Icing (you can roll a frozen bottle of water under your foot)
- Anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin. Cortisone injections may also be used for severe or long term symptoms.
- Compression sleeves, such as the FS6 Compression Foot Sleeve for day and or nighttime, relieves pain by compressing and gently supporting the structure of your foot.
- Braces and splints. Flexible straps such as the 3pp PF Lift can be worn at night to hold the fascia on a gentle stretch to reduce morning pain. The 3pp Arch Lift can be worn during the day to reduce stress on the arch and heel.
Although it’s difficult, try to be patient. Most people with plantar fasciitis recover but the process can be lengthy- between six and 10 months, just in time for the next bout of warm weather.
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Our blogs are educational in nature and are not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Because your condition is unique to you, it is recommended that you consult with your health care provider before attempting any medical or therapeutic treatments. We are always happy to answer questions about products mentioned in our blogs, however, we cannot provide a diagnosis or medical advice.
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