Is Reflexology Massage Good For Plantar Fasciitis?

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Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that affects the plantar fascia, which connects the heel bone to the toes and helps support the arch of your foot.

Over time, this band of tissue can become inflamed, causing stabbing pain in the heel or bottom of your foot when you get up after prolonged periods of sitting or when you step down on your feet after rising from bed in the morning.

If you’re dealing with plantar fasciitis, then you may want to consider reflexology massage as an option to relieve some of your symptoms and manage your pain more effectively.

Is Reflexology Massage Good For Plantar Fasciitis? Since reflexology is designed to restore and enhance energy flow in our bodies, it makes sense that it could help reduce pain. That said, only a handful of small studies have looked at whether plantar fasciitis pain can be reduced through reflexology massage.

One recent study found that foot reflexology massage improved not only foot pain but also activity level, which was measured by how far participants could walk in six minutes.

Another study found that plantar fasciitis symptoms were reduced after two weeks of twice-weekly treatments with one-hour Swedish massage sessions as well as daily 15-minute home sessions using an electric massager to stimulate feet for one minute each—10 minutes on each side and five minutes at both ends—followed by light stretching exercises.

What exactly is plantar fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that runs across your foot from heel to toe, supporting your arch. When it becomes inflamed—plantar fasciitis—the tissue can become irritated and painful when you stand or walk.

The pain typically gets worse in the morning when you wake up or after sitting for long periods of time. You might also feel stabbing pain in your heel while taking steps or moving around during exercise.

The causes of plantar fasciitis

It’s thought that plantar fasciitis is caused by: increased activity, weight gain, improper foot mechanics, abnormal foot anatomy and tight calf muscles. The best way to eliminate these factors is to work with a podiatrist and get custom-made orthotics.

However, if you’re suffering from plantar fasciitis or pain and aren’t ready to visit a specialist yet, reflexology may help alleviate your symptoms.

There are some reflex points on your feet that correspond with other areas of your body (your heel connects to parts of your ankle and leg), so applying pressure there can indirectly reduce discomfort in other regions.

The symptoms of plantar fasciitis

If you have plantar fasciitis, your foot may hurt when you get out of bed in the morning. You might have pain that increases throughout your day, especially after long periods of standing or activity. And then there’s pain at night: rolling over in bed can trigger a stabbing sensation in your heel.

But not everyone experiences every symptom—plantar fasciitis is extremely individualized. What works for one person might not work for another. (And if you’re still wondering what plantar fasciitis is, it’s an inflammation of a thick band of tissue called fascia that runs along your sole from your heel to your toes.)

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Diagnosing plantar fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis, or plantar fasciopathy, is a painful condition characterized by an inflammation of your plantar fascia—the connective tissue that runs from your heel to your toes.

It can be difficult to diagnose. A typical misdiagnosis occurs when someone attempts to self-diagnose using online resources such as WebMD or Googling plantar fasciitis; there is no way to perform a proper self-diagnosis.

Instead, you should visit a podiatrist who can correctly assess and diagnose your condition so you can begin treatment sooner rather than later.

Treating plantar fasciitis with reflexology massage

Not all reflexologists are trained to work with plantar fasciitis, but if you do have plantar fasciitis, it is well worth asking about.

Because reflexology has a holistic approach to healing—attempting to bring balance and harmony throughout your body—it can be an effective way of easing symptoms associated with plantar fasciitis.

The gentle pressure from reflexology massage, which focuses on different points of your feet, will help with inflammation and pain as well as increasing blood flow in your foot—which is crucial for faster healing.

Just make sure that you consult your doctor before adding anything new into your treatment regimen. It may also be helpful to visit a podiatrist or orthopedist who specializes in lower extremity conditions.

The benefits of reflexology massage for foot pain relief

Plantar fasciitis affects millions of people every year. The main symptoms are: a sharp, shooting pain in your heel area when you take your first steps after being seated for a long period of time.

From there it might feel like an ice pick is jabbing into your foot as you try to walk or get out of bed in the morning, especially if you have been inactive for several hours.

It can be hard to get back on track if it has been bothering you for weeks or months at a time and tends to come and go for some people. While there are several ways that you can treat plantar fasciitis yourself, one thing that many experts recommend is reflexology massage therapy.

Tips to maximize your results from reflexology massages

When choosing a reflexologist, make sure they’re certified or well-trained. You should also look for one that offers a variety of treatment options to help you tailor your sessions to your specific needs.

In addition, be sure to schedule regular sessions—about once every three weeks is optimal—to ensure consistent results. Finally, be sure to go in with realistic expectations: While reflexology can be helpful in many ways, it isn’t a cure-all for plantar fasciitis.

If you have additional underlying conditions—such as arthritis or diabetes—you may need additional treatments in addition to massage therapy. Consult with your doctor before starting any new treatment plan or exercise routine.

Final Word

While plantar fasciitis is often an extremely frustrating condition for sufferers, it is possible to get relief from symptoms using simple self-care techniques. The key is finding techniques that you enjoy doing, and that can fit into your schedule.

If you have trouble fitting exercises into your day, try setting aside time each night before bed for something relaxing. If you are looking for additional ways to provide relief from plantar fasciitis symptoms, try using reflexology massage techniques on certain areas of your feet as part of a regular treatment plan.

This type of massage may help provide some much-needed relief from pain and tenderness associated with plantar fasciitis without having to make any lifestyle changes or schedule appointments with a physical therapist.

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Lynn has been writing at our blog for over two years. She currently writes about topics such as sleep, massage therapy, and cooking. Recently, she has teamed up with other bloggers to write about their life stories. Lynn is also a certified massage therapist who loves to express herself through cooking recipes she finds on Pinterest or food blogs. Lynn's blog is an outlet where she can share her passions with others while encouraging them to live the best version of themselves.

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