Home treatments like rest, icing, and using braces and anti-inflammatory drugs are often the first ways to treat plantar fasciitis. If those don’t ease the pain, an injection of a corticosteroid directly into the damaged section of the ligament can help. Your doctor can do this in their office. Your doctor may use an ultrasound device to help determine the best place for the injection. They can also apply corticosteroids to the skin of your heel or the arch of your foot, and then apply a painless electrical current to let the steroid pass through your skin and into the muscle.
Physical therapy is a key part of treatment for plantar fasciitis. It can help stretch your plantar fascia and Achilles tendons. A physical therapist can show you exercises to strengthen your lower leg muscles, helping to stabilize your walk and lessen the workload on your plantar fascia. If pain continues and other methods aren’t working, your doctor may recommend extracorporeal shock wave therapy. In this therapy, sound waves bombard your heel to stimulate healing within the ligament. Side effects of this treatment can include:
Extracorporeal shock wave therapy hasn’t been proven to be consistently effective in relieving symptoms. If the home and medical treatments don’t take care of your plantar fasciitis, the next option to consider is surgery.