Can a simple tape help to reduce heel pain?
Can it help to cure plantar fasciitis?
If you don’t know yet Plantar fasciitis taping is a treatment technique involving the application of athletic tape on the skin of the bottom of the foot to support the foot. Soon you will find out everything you need to know on the subject including detailed instructions for plantar fasciitis taping.
There are a few different kinds of tape as you can see in the following video:
Plantar fasciitis is a heel pain foot disorder. The plantar fascia ligament at the bottom of the foot (that connects the heel bone to the toes) is getting injured usually as a result of an overuse strain on the foot. The recovery from the disorder might be long and frustrating.
The tape is used to alleviate the stress on the bottom of the foot as it limits the range of motion of the foot while allowing functional movement. Connecting the edges of the foot arches the tape restricts the stretching of the plantar fascia ligament, preventing it from getting injured again. Hence the tape protects the foot from getting injured again.
Plantar fasciitis taping is used to help cases of biomechanical disorders as well as to support the feet during a strong effort. Athletes tend to use taping to support their exercises. Athletic tape is usually changed daily or as advised otherwise by the tape manufacturer.
Taping may have minor side effects such as rubbed skin and blisters, rash, or even allergic reactions. Taping is a short-term treatment that relieves the pain and keeps the foot from getting injured again. The relief from taping can be noticed within minutes but it does not take care of the real causes only stops the cause as long as it is there.
The best results from taping can be achieved in combination with other treatments. The taping job can be performed by a professional physician but also by the patient. Always consult your physician before you start a new treatment.
You should avoid foot taping in the following instances:
- If you have some other injuries such as fractures you must discuss them with your doctor
- If you know that you have some kind of skin allergy to athletic tape
- If the taping causes an increase in pain or in other symptoms
- If you have circulatory problems
- If you have diabetes
How to tape your foot for Plantar Fasciitis
Here are instructions for a few taping techniques that you can use. Each technique has its pros and cons. Some of them are more supportive and some are more restricting and complicated. In the beginning, you should start with a classic technique and then change it as you become more experienced.
Changes can be made in the brand of the tape, the strain of the tape, its width, the way you put it on the foot, etc. Like everything in life – Practice brings perfection – The more experience you get the more relief will follow.
In the beginning, it may seem problematic especially if you are taping yourself. But after a few times, the process will become easier and you will find the tape and the strain suitable for you.
General guidelines for taping for plantar fasciitis
- Consult your physician before you start taping so you will not cause even more damage.
- Apply the tape to clean and dry skin.
- Always start as you place the foot in a neutral and stable position.
- Smooth the tape to avoid wrinkles as these can cause blisters and discomfort.
- If you feel some kind of numbness or circulation problems take off the tape.
Low dye taping
Podiatrists have developed a few taping methods to support the foot and ankle. The low dye taping technique is used for injuries or pain caused by overpronation.
It reduces the foot joints’ range of motion, supports the plantar fascia, and relieves the heel pain from the disorder. This is the most complicated and supportive taping technique. There are a few steps for this technique:
- Place the foot in a neutral position.
- Attach the tape around the heel from the bottom of the big toe ending under the bottom of the pinkie toe. Keep smoothing the tape to avoid wrinkles.
- Attach an anchor tape from the bottom of the big toe across the foot to the bottom of the pinkie toe.
- Attach a strip of tape from the bottom of the big toe around the heel and back to the starting point.
- Attach a strip of tape from the bottom of the pinkie toe around the heel and back to the starting point.
- Attach a strip of tape from the bottom of the pinkie toe around the other side of the heel forming an X back to the bottom of the big toe.
- Attach a strip of tape from one side across the foot to the other side and again until the foot is covered by the hill.
We know it is very hard to follow the instructions this way. Now you can watch this nice video to get a better idea of what it is all about.
Longitudinal arch taping
The longitudinal arch taping is a taping technique that supports the plantar fascia. It is quite simple and efficient. Hold the foot in a neutral position. 3 tape strips are applied on the bottom of the foot from the bottom of the toes to the heel. The first is in the middle and the rest to the sides.
The dorsiflexion angle of the foot while applying the tape will determine the tape’s tightness as you walk. If the tape is too tight and does not allow you to walk you should start the next time with a smaller dorsiflexion angle.
Arch brace taping
Arch brace taping is a plantar fasciitis taping technique that supports the longitudinal arch. It is the simplest technique of them all. Wrap the tape around the arch at the middle of your foot to perform a brace. The tape can also be applied over a sock. Avoid applying the tape too tight as you can cut blood circulation.
Plantar fasciitis taping can be very successful depending on the severity of the pain. Taping is designed to treat the symptoms of the disorder and help to relieve the pain. It will not treat the causes. To get the best results use taping in conjunction with other plantar fasciitis treatment methods.
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