Is Plantar Fasciitis your "Achilles' Heel"?

You don't have to be a mythological warrior to have this weakness.

If your first few steps every morning cause the kind of pain that reminds you that you are, indeed, a mere mortal, then you may be suffering with Plantar Fasciitis. 

Plantar fasciitis/fasciosis is an overuse injury characterized by pain in the sole of the foot. This pain is typically most pronounced during your first few steps in the morning and walking after long periods of sitting. People with flat feet or extremely high arches may be more prone to this injury. 

Untreated, plantar fasciitis can become chronic and due to altered gait due to pain in the foot, you may begin to experience pain in the ankle, knee, hip or low back. 

Dr. Pierce has been successfully treating patient's with plantar fasciitis in her Newport Beach chiropractic and acupuncture office for more than 5 years. Some patients reporting complete resolution of their heel and foot pain in as few as 3 visits! Through a combination of manual therapy including Graston Technique, myofascial release, joint mobilizations and rehabilitative exercise, you can get on to the road to recovery quickly. Dry needling is also extremely helpful to effectively reduce tension in the heel and calf muscles, which may be largely contributing to your foot and heel pain! 

Heel and foot pain doesn't have to be something you just "live with". Make your appointment today and start on your road to recovery! 

What is Dry Needling and what is the difference between Dry Needling and Acupuncture? 

 

WHAT IS DRY NEEDLING?

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Dry Needling is a treatment technique where thin filiform needles are inserted through the skin into pathological areas of the muscle known as "trigger points" for the purpose of relieving myofascial pain and muscle spasm. These are the same needles used in traditional acupuncture therapy, they are solid rather than hollow, and no medication is injected.

Dry needling is used in conjunction with other manual therapy techniques and therapeutic exercise.

When performing dry needling, there may be a "twitch response" where the specific band of muscle involuntarily contracts in response to insertion of the needle.  Beneficial effects can occur without elicitation of the twitch response.  Sometimes electrotherapy is also applied with the trigger point needling technique, this is referred to as electroacupuncture. If electroacupuncture is considered appropriate, small clips are attached to specific needling locations and a mild electrical current is applied. Electrical muscle stimulation aids in stimulating blood flow, reducing pain and relieving muscular spasm. 

In the State of California, the only providers who can legally perform these types of needling techniques are licensed acupuncturists and medical doctors. A licensed acupuncturist's education and training in needling techniques requires a Master's degree obtained after 3 years of education and training. 

Compared to Dry Needling, Acupuncture, when applied as a form of traditional Chinese medicine, uses acupuncture points on the surface of the body that are located along "meridians" that correspond with the internal organs and the energies associated with those organs. Traditional acupuncture techniques aim to relieve congestion of energy and blood, thereby restoring circulation and reducing symptoms associated with said qi (energy) stagnation. 

Cupping & Graston, Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Techniques.

Most people are familiar with massage therapy and chiropractic adjustments, but not everyone is versed in the application of techniques like cupping (myofascial decompression or MDT) and the Graston Technique. 

Cupping (MDT) methods have been used for thousands of years as a treatment intervention aimed at relieving muscular pain, improving circulation and in some ancient theories, aiding the body in riding itself of disease or illness.

Recently, cupping has gained popularity after the 2016 Olympic Games when a rather well-known swimmer was seen with the trademark cupping circles on his body during competition. 

The benefits of cupping for musculoskeletal injuries include: Improved circulation to the injured tissue, relief of muscular tension and reduction of muscular pain. 

Clean plastic cups are placed on the skin and a pump device is used to pull air out of the cup, creating a negative pressure which pulls the tissue into the cup. This method is believed to help decompress the layers of tissue (fascia and muscle) under the skin where the cup has been placed.

Cupping Techniques

Static on static

Cup(s) are placed and left on a single location over a body region that remains still/immobile. 

Dynamic on static

Cup(s) are moved over the region being treated, using a massage lotion or oil as a buffer. The body area being treated does not move.

Static on Dynamic

Cup is left stationary while the patient moves the body part through a partial or full range of motion. For example: a cup is placed and left stationary on the quadriceps (front of the thigh) while the patient bends and extends their knee. 

dynamic on dynamic

A combination of moving the cup(s) while the patient also simultaneously moves the body area being treated. 

All of these variations of cupping therapy are performed with the ultimate goal of decreasing pain, promoting mobility and improving function. 

So how about Graston Technique? The Graston Technique is an instrument assisted soft tissue technique where a stainless steel tool is used to apply mild to moderate scraping over previously injured tissues. Much like how a stethescope amplifies heart sounds, the Graston tool amplifies the texture of the tissues under the skin. As the provider applies sweeping movements with the tool over the skin, certain regions will feel "grittier" or more coarse than others. This often signifies that these particular regions are where soft tissue adhesions are located and may be the source of altered mobility or pain. 

These effective and safe treatment modalities may be applied as a stand alone intervention but are most often applied along with other treatment interventions such as joint manipulation / chiropractic adjustments, active or passive sports massage and myofascial release techniques and exercise. Cupping and Graston therapy may both be applied to the same treatment area in the same visit. Cupping and Graston are great for the treatment of lower back pain, neck and shoulder pain, foot pain like plantar fasciitis/fasciosis, carpal tunnel syndrome, knee pain and MUCH more. 

To find out if chiropractic care, dry needling, acupuncture or cupping/Graston are the right treatment(s) for you, call the office, email or schedule an appointment NOW! 

Is Plantar Fasciitis your "Achilles' Heel"?

You don't have to be a mythological Greek war hero to have a weakness.

If your first few steps every morning cause the kind of pain that reminds you that you are, indeed, a mere mortal, then you may be suffering with Plantar Fasciitis. 

Plantar fasciitis is an overuse injury characterized by pain in the sole of the foot. This pain is typically most pronounced during your first few steps in the morning and walking after long periods of sitting. People with flat feet or extremely high arches may be more prone to this injury. 

Untreated, plantar fasciitis can become chronic and due to altered gait due to pain in the foot, you may begin to experience pain in the ankle, knee, hip or low back. 

Dr. Pierce has been successfully treating patient's with plantar fasciitis in her Newport Beach chiropractic and acupuncture office for more than 5 years. Some patients reporting complete resolution of their heel and foot pain in as few as 3 visits. 

Heel and foot pain doesn't have to be something you just "live with". Make your appointment today and start on your road to recovery! 

Plantar Fasciitis - You DONT have to live with it.

Plantar Fasciitis is the most common pathology affecting the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is the fibrous connective tissue extending from the bottom of the heel through the base of the foot, supporting the arch.  When there is injury and inflammation to this tissue, there will be pain on the heel and/or the arch of the foot, usually worst in the morning while taking your first few steps out of bed. 

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In active individuals this condition is often the result of overuse such as running, jumping, walking or long periods of standing.  For more sedentary individuals, plantar foot pain may be due to obesity.  If you are "flat footed" you may have greater chances of developing plantar fasciitis. 

If you start noticing pain similar to what has been described above, you may be in for a long haul if you do not address it quickly. Initially, it is suggested that you apply the "RICE" protocol. Rest/Ice/Compression/Elevation.  If your condition does not resolve quickly you may require therapy to effectively address and resolve your painful symptoms.

Dr. Pierce uses a variety of treatments to effectively address plantar foot pain and plantar fasciitis. In addition to treating the plantar fascia itself, it is vitally important the treat the muscles and tendons not only of the foot itself, but the soft tissue and joints of the lower leg and often the hamstrings.  By isolating each contributing soft tissue structure involved, Dr. Pierce is able to effectively reduce pain and improve function.  

Stop living with plantar fasciitis and dread your first steps each morning. Through myofascial release, instrument assisted soft tissue treatment with Graston technique, active myofascial release, joint mobilization, therapeutic exercise and physiotherapies, Dr. Pierce is the one for the job! Make an appointment today!