Plantar Fasciitis | Causes & Risk Factors

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What causes the heel pain?

As a person gets older, the plantar fascia becomes less like a rubber band and more like a rope that doesn't stretch very well. The fat pad on the heel becomes thinner and can't absorb as much of the shock caused by walking. The extra shock damages the plantar fascia and may cause it to swell, tear or bruise. You may notice a bruise or swelling on your heel.

Other risk factors for plantar fasciitis include:

  • Overweight and obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Spending most of the day on your feet
  • Becoming very active in a short period of time
  • Being flat-footed or having a high arch

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 04/14
Created: 09/00

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