Question: I’ve been wearing a splint at night for plantar fasciitis, but I’m still in pain. What else can I do?
Answer: A common condition in middle-aged adults, plantar fasciitis occurs when the ligament that connects the heel bone to the toes becomes inflamed. Wearing a splint at night should help ease pain by gently stretching the ligament. Another way to stretch is to place a rolled towel on the ball of your foot, then hold both ends of the towel and gently pull with your knee straight. You should do this several times a day. Rolling the foot on a frozen plastic bottle of water and taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug such as ibuprofen (Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve) will help with pain and inflammation. It’s also important to wear shoes with good arch support and a cushioned sole, and use orthotic inserts if needed. Avoid wearing flip-flops.
If these measures do not help, consult a board-certified podiatrist, who may recommend custom orthotics, corticosteroid injections or, in some cases, surgery.