Overuse Injuries and Plantar Fasciitis

Many people experience foot pain on a daily basis, much of which is caused by plantar fasciitis or similar overuse injuries. Not many types of pain are as debilitating as foot pain. It can make moving in general a hassle and cause you to feel hopeless. Tissue damage in the foot caused by everyday wear or by sports, work-related use, age and exposure to repetitive activity is classified as an overuse injury. These injuries typically start small and insignificantly which is why they can sneak up on the body. Without plenty of rest, small injuries become bigger and it is a challenge to allow enough time for the feet, which are used daily, to rest. Some common overuse injuries are:

Stress fractures

Stress fractures are caused by repeated impact on hard surfaces. These fractures are tiny cracks in the bone that can lead to larger breaks that may require a longer healing period or surgery. They are common among athletes.

Metatarsalgia

Also known as stone bruises, metatarsalgia is a pain in the ball of the foot, the forefoot, associated with overuse. Tenderness without visible bruising is common with this injury. Risk factors for metatarsalgia are being overweight, walking barefoot often, aging and running.

Achilles tendinopathy

The Achilles tendon is right above the posterior of the heel bone and it connects the calf muscles to the heel. With this injury, patients may experience tenderness to the touch and swelling, stiffness and pain with use. The discomfort is often worse in the morning and gradually lessens throughout the day.

Plantar fasciitis

This overuse injury is one of the most common. With this injury, there is inflammation of the thick tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes-- this is called the plantar fascia. The pain may be sharp and stabbing first thing in the morning and decrease throughout the day. It may become aggravated by long periods of use or standing. It is common in people who are overweight, sedentary or in runners. It may also occur from wearing unsupportive footwear or heels.

In addition to overuse, foot pain can be caused by arthritis, diabetes, obesity, gout, flat feet, bunions and improper alignment of the foot, leg, and hips. All of these risk factors will be reviewed upon an examination.

Foot pain does not have to negatively affect your lifestyle. With proper treatment, you will literally be back on your feet before you know it. Trying to treat overuse injuries without proper medical supervision may increase the odds of them worsening. Store bought foot pads and braces may not do the trick. If you do not want your foot pain to force you into a sedentary lifestyle, learn more about proper treatments for stress fractures, metatarsalgia, foot tendinopathies, plantar fasciitis and other overuse injuries, by scheduling an appointment with our office today.

Visit us for help

Remember, over-the-counter treatments are not always enough to deal with foot pain. It is best to visit our office for help so that we can treat the problem and help you to recover faster.

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