People who suffer from the discomfort of plantar fasciitis can find relief by using an orthotic brace or support. Plantar fasciitis is caused by inflammation or injury to the ligament that supports the bottom of the foot, and the pain associated with it is aggravated by incorrect dorsiflexion of the foot. To treat the heel pain associated with plantar fasciitis the alignment of the foot must be corrected. The use of a daytime brace is found to be a beneficial part of medical treatment by supporting the arch of the foot and relieving stress to the plantar fascia ligament.
Daytime plantar fascia braces provide a non-rigid, streamline fit and offer support during normal activities. The most basic style is similar to an ACE bandage, but without the hassle of wrapping the ankle and foot. A wrap around neoprene ankle support is used by sliding the affected foot into the soft, flexible brace and securing the Velcro closure in a figure eight configuration. The neoprene uses body heat to produce gentle therapeutic warmth and the figure eight closure offers support to the heel and ankle. The heel of the brace is open for a natural fit.
Recent advancements in technology have created a line of more sophisticated braces and supports for people suffering from plantar fasciitis. The use of air chambers in the sole of the brace provides pulsating compression to the plantar fascia ligament and allows for increased circulation to the area. The gentle massage can reduce swelling and in turn will reduce pain in the area. Magnets are also being used in some supports and braces manufactured today. A magnet is used to create a magnetic field around the injured area to increase blood flow to the injury and accelerate the healing process.
What’s the best plantar fasciitis brace? There are a number of braces (also called night splints) that are well reviewed. My best recommendation is the Swede-O-Deluxe Plantar Fasciitis Night splint. It’s a bit more pricey than some of the other brands, but gosh darn it, it’s the most comfortable by far — and you’ll find this is pretty important. A cheaper option is the Bird & Cronin Plantar Fasciitis Splint — it’s not as comfortable, but it gets the job done and more importantly it’s cheaper.
Now why do you need a nightsplint/brace?
Severe injuries to the plantar fascia ligament require a more aggressive brace in the form of a rigid boot. A rigid brace keeps the foot supported in a precise degree of dorsiflexion, thereby relieving the stress placed on the plantar fascia. It is important to wear a boot with a textured bottom for daytime use to eliminate the possibility of slipping and falling.
For a person suffering from the discomfort of plantar fasciitis, the use of a daytime brace in combination with other doctor recommended therapy effectively relieves pain and inflammation.
If you’re interested in following a full plantar fasciitis treatment program, you might want to look at this plantar fasciitis treatment program. Just remember, it takes TIME to cure this condition.