Quality of life quickly decreases when normal day-to-day activities are hindered by frequent pain. Plantar fasciitis patients often experience discomfort with standing and walking due to the heel being the pain site.
Acupuncture can assist in the reduction of pain and relieve the suffering of the patient. Plantar fasciitis is one of many conditions acupuncture treatment helps with the patient not having to rely on pain-reducing medicines like Tylenol.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a common condition that affects daily activities due to pain in the foot. This condition comes from the plantar fascia, a band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot. Plantar fasciitis is caused by this band of tissue being inflamed and results in heel pain. Patients can also experience stabbing pain during walking, especially first thing in the morning.
Pain levels can fluctuate throughout the day for plantar fasciitis patients. Some patients experience a worsened foot pain (specifically in the heel) after a session of exercise, but pain might not be present during the exercise. Patients may feel the heel pain fade after some time of moving around but it usually returns after long stretches of standing or putting pressure on the feet after sitting for some time.
Plantar fasciitis patients can be at risk for further joint pain if their chronic heel pain goes untreated. Walking patterns may alter to prevent the discomfort caused by plantar fasciitis. This can lead to patients putting more stress on their knees, hips, or back while walking.
Who Can Have Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is often seen in patients between the ages of 40 and 60, but younger patients can also develop this condition. Certain activities, such as ballet or running, can also cause plantar fasciitis. This condition is a common sports injury, as it can result from a strain. Runner’s World identifies plantar fasciitis causes as drastic or sudden increases in mileage, poor foot structure, and inappropriate running shoes.
Abnormal walking patterns or wearing shoes with inadequate support could be a factor in plantar fasciitis risk. Those with occupations that cause long hours on their feet, such as construction or factory workers, are more prone to developing plantar fasciitis as excessive amounts of pressure on the feet could cause damage to the plantar fascia.
Are There Ways To Prevent Plantar Fasciitis?
To avoid any sports injury, stretching and warming up the muscles properly helps to prevent strains. Tight or stressed calf muscles could increase the possibility of developing plantar fasciitis. Exercising with relaxed muscles can assist in plantar fasciitis prevention.
Walking habits make a large difference when it comes to plantar fasciitis. It is recommended to walk and stand with an even amount of weight between each foot while centering the weight over the feet. Walking or standing with the feet rocking inward or outward could cause strain on the feet, which can result in plantar fasciitis.
Having proper foot attire can also prevent plantar fasciitis. Shoes should support the bottom of the feet without adding any uncomfortable pressure or additional discomfort. For patients more prone to plantar fasciitis, orthopedic shoes could be a preventative option.
How Does Acupuncture Help with Plantar Fasciitis?
Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese medical treatment that involves hair-like needles puncturing the skin at certain pressure points. This practice can be used as a natural treatment for conditions such as:
- Chronic Pain (sports injuries, arthritis, etc.)
- Chronic Disorders (neuropathy, heart disease, etc.)
- Eye Conditions (dry eyes, etc.)
- Neurological Conditions (headaches, dizziness, etc.)
- Gastrointestinal Issues (IBS, heartburn, etc.)
- Cardiovascular Health (high blood pressure, stroke, etc.)
As a safe medical practice, acupuncture patients experience only minor pain during and after treatment. The sites of treatment could become sore or bleed lightly from the needles, however, due to the thinness of the needles discomfort levels from treatment should be small.
The main way acupuncture helps with plantar fasciitis is through pain relief. Patients who receive acupuncture treatments can begin to experience less pain in their feet and can feel an improvement in functionality. The stress placed in the heel from plantar fasciitis can lessen after acupuncture treatments, which results in lower pain levels.
How Does Acupuncture Relieve Pain?
Acupuncture relieves pain because the treatment encourages the body to release endorphins, otherwise known as the body’s natural painkiller. The slight pressure acupuncture needles place on certain points of the body stimulates the body’s capability to heal itself while also improving blood flow. Acupuncture can restore functionality for acute or chronic pain, and sometimes the patient experiences relief almost immediately.
Patients can begin to live a normal lifestyle without the hindrance of pain after receiving acupuncture treatments. With acupuncture, inflammation can reduce from the pain site and pain-inducing symptoms can dim or fade away entirely.
Acupuncture is an effective approach to pain relief as the body’s healing mechanisms are channeled. Patients who were unable to find relief through conventional medicine could see improvement in their condition after acupuncture treatments as the body is promoted to heal on its own without any additional substances.
Acupuncture Points for Heel Pain
The body consists of pressure points that are used during treatment to communicate with the body and promote healing. An acupuncturist will assess the proper points to treat and use acupuncture needles to give slight pressure. This pressure allows to body to respond by releasing the proper chemicals needed to eliminate pain.
A study with Singapore Medical Journal has found the PC 7 acupoint to be an effective place for plantar fasciitis treatment. Located in the wrist, PC 7 can reduce heel pain when given the proper pressure.
Benefits of Acupuncture for Plantar Fasciitis
Studies have shown how acupuncture can be a reliable option for plantar fasciitis pain relief. As an outpatient treatment, acupuncture can have a significant positive effect on patients as pain is reduced. Acupuncture is completely natural and does not require prescription drugs or surgery.
Patients who suffer from chronic pain are at risk of developing a medication dependency while using pain-reducing drugs, either over-the-counter or prescription. This can be due to the patient feeling unable to function without medicine as their pain levels disrupt their ability to function.
Acupuncture removes the risk of drug dependency as it is an all-natural treatment. As a holistic medicine, acupuncture focuses on improving the health and wellbeing of the patient rather than just treating specific symptoms.
Acupuncture can be used as a long-term treatment option where some pain-relieving drugs act as a short-term solution. Pain-reducing medications function to mask the pain of the symptoms, but acupuncture works to optimize the body’s natural healing capabilities.
Patients can receive more benefits through reoccurring acupuncture sessions. Although some can find immediate relief, some patients may need multiple acupuncture sessions to experience an optimal improvement in pain and function.
Acupuncture can provide pain relief for numerous conditions in addition to plantar fasciitis, such as back pain or neuropathy pain. Pain can be managed, relieved, or be eliminated after the patient receives acupuncture treatment. Acupuncture can be used to either prevent chronic plantar fasciitis pain or to reduce chronic pain.
In addition, patients can have a higher quality of life after their acupuncture treatment. Patients could have more energy, experience better sleep, or have an improved mental state after acupuncture. Chronic pain has been known to cause depression as basic functions could be more difficult. Once this pain is resolved, the patient can return to normal activities without fear of discomfort.
For further information on acupuncture in Augusta, Georgia, feel free to contact our office. Augusta Acupuncture Clinic helps patients to optimize their health and become their best possible self.