Night Splints for Heel Pain
Night splints are among the many ways of fighting the unbearable heel pain caused due to plantar fasciitis. Since heel pain is the most severe after extended hours of resting the feet, night splints are worn at night to support your heels. A night splint supports your foot at 90 degrees and keeps the calf muscles stretched all through the night. Although, a night splint is one of the effective treatments of heel pain, it is also an uncomfortable thing to wear all through the night. Keeping in mind all the benefits of night splints in heel pain cure, a lot of people prefer the sock night splints over the rigid night splints.
When we sleep without wearing a night splint, our foot tends to bend inwards causing the plantar fascia to shorten. This is the reason it pains so much when you try to place your heels in the morning just after getting out of the bed. Wearing a night splint helps to keep the ligament of plantar fascia stretched all through. A night splint retains the tension created over the plantar fascia and also lessens the stress formed on the intrinsic muscles and tissues where you feel the intense pain.
What causes heel pain in the morning?
The ligament of plantar fascia holds up the arch of your foot. It is a thick bunch of fibrous tissue that runs straight from the heels crossing the bottom of the foot and reaches out to the toes. The Inflammation of the plantar fascia ligament is called plantar fasciitis that follows a process of micro tears and swelling in the fascia. When chronic plantar fasciitis prevails over several months, the degenerative process of plantar fasciosis comes into being.
When your heels are kept in a resting position for a long time, the plantar fascia relaxes and micro tears accumulate overnight along the ligament. On your waking up in the morning, as soon as you place your heels on the ground throwing your entire body weight on them, a ripping pain eliminates you from walking comfortably.
How does a night splint work for heel pain?
By using a night splint during sleep, you are giving your foot rest without letting the planter fascia shorten and relax. The idea of using this device is to hold the foot with toes pulled upwards preventing the accumulation of micro tears along the fascia. Several research findings have advocated the curative effect of night splints on plantar fasciitis. People who have been suffering from heel pain for a period have agreed to the fact that night splints do help in easing the stabbing heel pain and assist in healing.
For better results, patients suffering from heel pain or plantar fasciitis must use night splints regularly without any break for at least a month or more to get significant improvements. A wide variety of night splints are available in the market. Patients can obviously take their pick to treat this painful medical condition. If you are a light sleeper, just make sure your wear it at least 4 hours a night.
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