Waking Up With Sore Feet – The Surprising Answer That You Need To Know
The feet are probably one of the parts of our body that are under constant pressure throughout the day. Whether you have a desk job or are on your feet for long periods of time, there are many reasons why you may experience foot pain.
As a runner, you no doubt have experienced such pain at one time or another. In this article, I’d like to address a complaint often heard: waking up with sore feet.
To better understand why your feet can be painful especially in the morning, let’s take a closer look at how the feet work.
The plantar fascia is a band of ligament that connects your heel bone to your toes and is also responsible for supporting your arch. (1) When the plantar fascia gets tight or inflamed, it results in a condition known as plantar fasciitis. Repeated strain on this ligament leads to pain and swelling.
Some factors may increase your risk of getting this condition. If you are a runner or athlete, wearing wrong footwear, overtraining and activities that cause tension in the legs. This condition is common among runners and overweight people and can also be a result of overpronation of the foot which is hereditary.
Determining If You Have Plantar Fasciitis
Since there are other possible causes for your sore feet, the first thing you need to do is determine whether it really is plantar fascia.
Experts outline 3 signs to look out for:
Although these three sings can be quite conclusive, it is still advisable to consult a physician before you decide to self-medicate. Although initially not required, imaging tests may also be performed to help diagnose chronic plantar fasciitis. Ultrasonography, MRI, and radiography are some of the imaging tests that can help rule out other conditions.
Treating Plantar Fasciitis At Home
The good news is most people are able to recover from the condition with a year completely and only 5 out of 100 require surgical treatment. With this in mind, let’s talk about what you can do to speed up your recovery. (1)
The goals of any treatment method fall into either of the three categories:
These suggested treatment methods should be done daily until the tendon is totally healed. Also, remember not to perform any exercises if you are still in pain. Sports including running should also be postponed until the pain subsides.
Goal #1: Reduce Inflammation
Reducing inflammation is one of the first aid treatments for plantar fasciitis. Use the PRICE method (Protect, Rest, Compress and Elevate) to help reduce swelling.
When applying the cold compress, remember to use a towel and not to place ice directly on the skin. Also, only ice the area for up to 10 minutes per hour.
Goal #2: Allow The Tear To Heal
One of the ways you can relieve the pain under the heel is to tape the foot. This works to help unload the strain on the ligament and allow it to heel. Taping also reduces the tension in the arch of the foot.
Aside from taping, wearing sandals designed for plantar fascia can help reduce the tension in the foot. Flat soled shoes usually make symptoms worse so wearing the right footwear can protect the heel when you walk.
Goal #3: Improve Strength And Flexibility
Once pain is reduced, strength and flexibility exercises can be performed. These exercises are designed to stretch the plantar fascia and improve movement. Ideally, these exercises should be performed before you take the first step in the morning. (7)
Preventing The Condition
Since running puts a lot of pressure on the plantar fascia, it is important that you are aware of what can be done to prevent it in the first place.
One of the mistakes that many runners make is landing on the heel instead on the midfoot.
Another tip that can help relax you're plantar is training yourself to relax your legs, ankles, and calves whenever you run.
Wearing proper shoes is another easy prevention method.
Waking up with sore feet is one of the first and most common symptoms of plantar fasciitis. Although this may not be the only reason, it is the most popular and knowing how to determine if you have is important.
Once you confirm that you have the condition, apply the three methods mentioned to reduce inflammation, allow the tendon to heel and strengthen it.