Plantar Faciiitis Relief with Acupuncture

By Tona Marquez on Nov 19, 2015 at 02:55 PM in Santa Barbara Acupuncture

Plantar faciitis is becoming a common ailment I see more and more in clinic. Plantar faciitis can occur for a variety of reasons such as over use, prolonged standing or sitting, sports injury, lack of supportive footware is another. We live in a beautiful beach town and it is common to see many people walking about wearing sandles or flip flops. Unfortunately this type of footware often does not provide adequate support for many people's feet.

Acupuncture for heel pain

Heel pain is the most common complaint of plantar faciitis that I see in clinic. But plantar faciitis pain can be felt in other parts of the sole of the foot too. The pain can be mild to severe in intensitiy and usually comes on gradually over time. Frequently, tight muscles in the low leg accompanies plantar faciitis.

Wearing athletic shoes with proper support, custom inserts, and physical therapy are the most common treatments given for plantar faciitis. But acupuncture is also a great option that can compliment all the above treatments as well.

Balance Method Acupuncture to treat plantar faciitis.

I typically apply hair thin acupuncuture needles to the hands and the top of the head in corresponding areas associated with the heel (or whatever area of the sole of the foot that is painful). These needles are supporting the body's natural ability to take away pain and heal the inflamed soft tissues causing the plantar faciitis.

Typically after a few needles are placed the patient can walk with less pain. And sometimes after additional needles are place on the hands the patient can walk almost pain-free! The patient then reclines on one of our zero-gravity chairs and rests for 30 minutes to an hour. I typically apply a few additional needles to the forearms and a few to the lower legs to help ease muscle tension in the legs that typically accompanies plantar faciitis. 

Patients usually get Balance Method Acupuncture every day until their plantar faciitis pain is 50% better. Then treatment is reduced to 2 to 3 times a week til the pain is 80% better. Treatment is again reduced, this time to once a week until the pain is completely gone. Then I ask the patient to follow up once every other week for 2 additional treatments to make sure the body is functioning well to keep the pain away.