Very often associated with heel pain and a nagging, common occurrence among active people in middle age, plantar fasciitis is caused by the degeneration of the plantar fascia, the thick strand of tissue that makes up the arch of your foot. Over time, the tissue slowly degenerates due to a build-up of very small tears that eventually become too much for the body to repair on its own.
People who suffer from plantar fasciitis tend to have evident pain in the mornings or after prolonged periods of rest. It is not uncommon for the prominent pain to subside into a consistent but more manageable pain by the end of the day. Naturally, the pain can get worse with perpetual activity.
The onset of plantar fasciitis can result from rapid weight gain, which causes the tissue to work harder without the opportunity to adapt. Also, those with other arch issues, such as flat feet or unusually high arches, are subject to plantar fasciitis, as are those with tight or irritated Achilles tendons. Distance runners are common plantar fasciitis patients.
Don’t be too quick to self-diagnose plantar fasciitis as heel spurs. The two are often present simultaneously but are disparate types of heel pain.