Policeman’s heel – Plantar Fasciitis describes the pain around the heel and arch of the foot. Medically the pain occurs in a tendon called the fascia. The fascia is a strong band of tissue stretching from your heel to your toe. It supports the arch of your foot and acts as a shock absorber in the foot.
Pain is felt at the bottom of the heel where it connects with the ground in each step. If standing for too long, the pain can be severe and may leave individuals hobbling to reduce the weight-bearing on that foot.
The causes of plantar fasciitis are not absolute and various causes can be in the form of sports injuries and insufficient healing.
Another cause can be having very tight calf muscles. The effect of this puts strain on the muscles and can be described as ‘walking permanently on the tiptoes’, putting the Achilles tendon and the arch of the foot under increased pressure.
How can we treat Plantar Fasciitis?
First, consult with your GP who will be able to give you a thorough assessment and may give you some recommendations such as:
- reduced strenuous physical activities
- wearing insoles
- use of ice on the area as a form of relief
Secondly, you can consult with a physiotherapist who will give you a thorough assessment and if Plantar Fasciitis is diagnosed, he will issue you with specific exercises to help stretch the claves. Depending on the severity, your physio may also recommend shoe supports to support the heel further.
Thirdly, if the above methods haven’t proved successful you may be suggested more aggressive forms of therapy such as shockwave therapy which helps to repair the affected area while making the nerve endings less sensitive.
nhs.uk. n.d. Plantar fasciitis. [online] Available at: <https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/plantar-fasciitis/> [Accessed 2 March 2022].
Perform Podiatry. n.d. Policeman’s Foot Syndrome – Perform Podiatry. [online] Available at: <https://www.performpodiatry.co.nz/policemans-foot-syndrome/> [Accessed 2 March 2022].
London Foot and Ankle Centre. n.d. Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis (Heel Pain) – London Foot and Ankle Centre. [online] Available at: <https://www.londonfootandanklecentre.co.uk/condition/plantar-fasciitis-heel-pain/> [Accessed 2 March 2022].