What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel discomfort. It is characterized by inflammation of a band of tissue running across the bottom of each foot and connecting the heel bone to the toes (plantar fascia).
Plantar fasciitis is frequently associated with stabbing pain that occurs with the first steps of the morning. The discomfort usually subsides as you get up and move, but it may return after prolonged standing or when you stand up after sitting.
Plantar fasciitis’s etiology is unknown. It is more prevalent in runners and obese individuals.
What are the causes and symptoms?
The plantar fascia is a band of connective tissue (fascia) that runs from the heel bone to the toe bases. It stabilizes the foot’s arch and absorbs shock while walking.
Small tears in the fascia can occur as a result of tension and stress. Repeated stretching and tearing of the fascia can irritate or inflame it, although the exact cause of plantar fasciitis is unknown in many cases.
The primary reason is excessive straining of the Plantar Fascia, which can manifest itself in a variety of ways and ultimately result in irritation, pain, and edema.
Plantar fasciitis often manifests as a sharp pain at the heel on the bottom of the foot. The pain is normally most severe in the first few steps after awakening, although it can also be provoked by prolonged standing or standing up from a sitting position.
Some of the prominent causes are:
- Flat foot
- Calcaneal ridge
- Excessive straining activities such as long walks, running, ballet dancing, aerobic dance, and so on, are not recommended, especially on hard surfaces.
- Inappropriate footwear
- Footwear with a high heel
- Weakened calf muscles
What does Ayurvedic say about Plantar Fasciitis?
Ayurveda refers to it as Vatakandaka, a condition caused by a vitiation in kapha and vata dosha. The vata dosha refers to the metabolic force that governs all bodily and mental functions. Kapha dosha is the metabolic force that creates and nourishes body tissues. Vitiated kapha interferes with or alters the natural flow of vata; it is also related to pitta (fire) and other dhatus (tissues), resulting in pain and inflammation.
The term ‘Kandaka’ refers to the point of a needle that resembles a thorn and causes a sharp, stinging sensation in the heel of the foot.
Exertion (physical activities such as running, leaping, walking, sports, and games) aggravates vata (means air- which governs all the movements of body and mind). The vitiated vata, in conjunction with the two doshas (pitta and kapha), becomes concentrated in the ankle-foot region, resulting in this painful disease.
Normally, the condition is not bothersome, but excessive activity and participation in other activities that place additional weight on the foot aggravate the discomfort and inflammation in the heels.
How Ayurveda can help in Plantar Fasciitis?
Our treatment’s primary goal is to balance the three doshas (bio-energies) and nourish the vitiated dhatus (tissues), as well as to alleviate pain and inflammation. Therefore, the first step is the elimination of the causal factors. In line with this approach, Ayurveda recommends adhering to a healthy and dosha balancing regimen to prevent and manage Plantar Fasciitis.The pain is normally most severe in the first few steps after awakening, although it can also be provoked by prolonged standing or standing up from a sitting position.
Panchakarma procedure is an essential part of Ayurvedic treatment for Plantar Fasciitis. It includes the following:
- Abhyanga– Ayurvedic hot oil massage followed by steaming
- Kizhi Massage– local pain and inflammation relief
- Pinda Sweda– Calf muscles stiffness relief
With this comprehensive approach, Ayurveda can help you to get relief from Plantar Fasciitis.