Plantar fasciitis will affect more than 10 percent of the population within their lifetime. So, many people will wonder why this disease affects them, and what they can do to prevent it.
The exact cause of plantar fasciitis is not understood; however, most doctors believe it develops because of repeated tears in the plantar fascia. Usually, the plantar fascia acts as a shock-absorbing support for the arch of the foot. When tension and stress upon the support become too great, small tears arise in the plantar fascia.
Due to tearing and over stretching the fascia can become irritated and inflamed, causing severe pain in the arch of the foot and the heel. This pain is usually worse in the early morning and after exercising.
Who is at Risk for Plantar Fasciitis?
Due to increased pressure put upon the plantar fascia ligaments, you’re at greater risk for the disease if you’re overweight or obese, or after a sudden weight gain. Pregnant women often experience bouts of plantar fasciitis, especially during the last trimester of the pregnancy.
If you’re flat footed, as 60 million Americans are, you’re at a higher risk for developing plantar fasciitis. If you’re consistently wearing shoes with little to no support and cushioning, or that do not fit well or are worn out, you’re putting yourself at risk for developing plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is intended to support the arch of the foot; however, it needs the assistance of a supportive shoe, especially if your day-to-day activities involved prolonged walking, running or standing.
Older people are more at risk for plantar fasciitis, as the disease is most common in adults aged 40 to 60 years of age. It’s also slightly more common in women than in men. If you’re in an occupation where you’re consistently standing or walking on hard surfaces you can damage your plantar fascia.
Athletes are at risk, especially those in sports, which place a lot of stress upon the heel and the attached tissue – such as distance running, jumping activities or dance.
Ignoring signs of plantar fasciitis can result in pain that will hinder your day-to-day activities. Simply changing your shoes can protect you from years of suffering in the future.