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working on hard floors with PF

Posted by Paula L on 3/04/02 at 08:52 (075606)

I have been suffering from heal pain for about three years now,I finally went to a podietrist and was diegnosed with PF...he told me to ice and stretch and gave me inflamitory drugs, however he said nothing about the eight hours a day that I work on my feet 40 to 43 hours a week on cement and ceramic tiled floors is this something that may keep me from healing?

Re: I am not a doctor, but I've been there...

Valerie S on 3/04/02 at 10:04 (075610)

Hi Paula...

I am not a doctor, but your story is one very familiar to me.

I had heel pain for 3 months before I finally went to see a podiatrist, when I could no longer walk from the car to the house after work it was so bad... I can't imagine walking through the pain for 3 years! I am sorry to hear that you are suffering...

It took a few months before my doctor would acknowledge that my job, which had me on my feet 45 hours a week, was a contributor to my pain and was keeping me from getting better. Everyone is different, of course... but I can tell you that I did not experience any significant or lasting improvement from any treatments until I got off my feet.

There are many conservative treatments to try, and if you haven't yet read the Heel Pain Book, do that as soon as you can. Did your doctor watch you walk or talk to you about proper footwear/arch support... possibly orthotics? There are ways that can help make getting through the days easier for you too, like taping (there are pictures in the Heel Pain Book).

But in response to your question... again, I am not a doctor of course ... long hours on your feet CAN irritate, if not cause, PF. Everyone responds differently to treatments, and I suggest reading and asking questions here.

If you would like to, you can email me at (email removed)... I have really been through this, and would be more than happy to share with you, and just listen... because we all know how frustrating this can be.

You are not alone... I hope you find some relief soon...

Your friend, Val.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Carole C in NOLA on 3/04/02 at 12:47 (075635)

Ouch! I'm not a doctor, just a fellow PF sufferer, but this sounds awful. Yes, I think it could keep you from healing! Can you work standing on a rubber mat that is made to absorb impact, maybe? How about very thick soft orthotics? This sounds like a real problem to me, and a big one.

Carole C

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Ed Davis, DPM on 3/04/02 at 15:29 (075645)

Working on hard surfaces can slow the healing of plantar fascia. Pay close attention to shoegear. Can you wear a good running shoe at work?
Ed

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Sandy H. on 3/04/02 at 21:43 (075687)

I agree with the rubber mats. I put them in various places where I stand. even putting them under carpets.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

RACHAEL T. on 3/04/02 at 23:13 (075697)

Yes, yes, yes! Cement floors, brick walks, & tile floors are a killer for my PF - each & every time I attempt to walk for any length of time on these floors - I experience a few days afterwards with worse symptoms & pain. I recently made an attempt to shop at Sam's Club - leaving my husband inside the store only after 15 minutes of me walking on the cement floor!

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Julie on 3/05/02 at 02:00 (075704)

Hi Paula

Could you negotiate a change to sit-down duties for a while? Your feet will have a much better chance to heal if you can stay off them as much as possible.

I suggest you read the heel pain book (click on the link right here) for more information about PF and its causes and treatment. Icing, stretching, and drugs are only a small part of the picture. If you are going to see your podiatrist again, ask him about taping, which has been helpful to many, including me. Or see the section on taping in Part 2 of the heel pain book for instructions. Taping gives support to your arches, and may relieve the pain.

What stretches did your pod give you? Sometimes, weight-bearing stretching can make things worse, so please 'listen' to your feet and if they feel worse, take it easy, and post here for some other ideas.

Never go barefoot in the house (I know you wouldn't at work!) and always wear good, supportive shoes.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:45 (075723)

Thanks for your responce,I made my boss buy six thick mat for me to walk on...these mats are in almost every area that I walk on and they do help,but I find that if I forget to walk in a carefull way all day long that it feels like it pulls the muscles on the bottom of my feet and the pain starts up no matter what I do. Orthotics could be an area to explore,I wear new balance shoes that cost me $150 they are for walking all day, they help alot. I will ask my DR at my next apt to try some orthotics. thanks again..Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:51 (075725)

Thank you for your responce, I have gone through three pair of $100 shoes made for walking, a pair of hiking boots bought at REI for $200 and at presant I am wearing a pair of new balance all condition run walk hike shoes $150 which I have found has given me the best support yet.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:54 (075726)

WOW!!! that sounds so familier. after work I have no life, I go home and sit all night..of corse now I get the pleasure of icing and stretching..which is bringing some relief, but then I go to work and it seems to undo everything.thanks Paula

Re: the mats were not enough for me

Valerie S on 3/05/02 at 18:07 (075765)

Hi Paula,

I can totally relate... at my job, we had big thick mats everywhere that people stood, and although they were more comfortable than the rest of the carpet (although also thickly padded on top of the concrete floors), by about an hour and a half into my shift, I was in tears... I tried to just walk through the pain, but it just got worse...

Not to sound like a broken record, but if you don't listen to your feet now, you could end up like me... I agree with Julie: is there any sit-down duties that you can do until your feet (hopefully) improve? Try talking to your doctor about your work. I found that my doctor was reluctant to tell me to take time off work... but I finally ended up begging him because I couldn't stand any longer! If it's possible, I'm sure your employer would prefer to let you sit-down, than to have you collecting workman's compensation or disability insurance...

Just a thought from someone who's really been there... I'm sorry to hear that you are suffering. Please listen to your feet...

Val.

Re: the mats were not enough for me

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 21:47 (075785)

Hi Valerie,thanks for your concernits just really nice to know that there are people out there who really do understand...and yes I spoke with my boss today about sitting down and doing some stretches when the pain becomes too great, he was ok with that idea but we're talking 20 minutes max if he or another person is presant who can run the line(i'm a line cook)thats helpfull...however after just a half an hour my feet start to kill me again, I do intend to speak with my DR if I don't start to improve with his plan of attack.thanks again Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 22:02 (075787)

hi Julie, thanks for your responce. My POD gave me two stretching exercises both are designed to stretch the PF the ack tendon and the calf muscle....standing facing the wall without bending the knees you lean forward untill your heals feel a gentle pulling I am to hold this pose for a count of 40 I do that three times then I alternate feet, bending one knee while the other leg is straight...does that make sence? if these stretches have a formal name I'm gonna be really embarrest,if they do please forgive my lack of knowledge..do you know if there are more or better ones than this??? thanks Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Julie on 3/05/02 at 22:14 (075790)

Paula, I'm going out in a minute, so will have to be quick. The 'wall stretches' have made a lot of PF sufferers worse. They can irritate the achilles tendon and the plantar fascia. Be very careful with them and if you find they are painful, stop. Make sure you do them correctly, with your hips, knees and ankles in line and don't arch your lower back.

If you search under 'Rudy', you'll find a series of simple yoga exercises for the feet that I posted some months ago which are not weight bearing. Non-weight-bearing stretches are better for PF. I believe.

But the main thing for you is - do try to get off your feet. Have you talked to your employers about a change to sit-down duties? Is it possible? Do try.

Re: I am not a doctor, but I've been there...

Valerie S on 3/04/02 at 10:04 (075610)

Hi Paula...

I am not a doctor, but your story is one very familiar to me.

I had heel pain for 3 months before I finally went to see a podiatrist, when I could no longer walk from the car to the house after work it was so bad... I can't imagine walking through the pain for 3 years! I am sorry to hear that you are suffering...

It took a few months before my doctor would acknowledge that my job, which had me on my feet 45 hours a week, was a contributor to my pain and was keeping me from getting better. Everyone is different, of course... but I can tell you that I did not experience any significant or lasting improvement from any treatments until I got off my feet.

There are many conservative treatments to try, and if you haven't yet read the Heel Pain Book, do that as soon as you can. Did your doctor watch you walk or talk to you about proper footwear/arch support... possibly orthotics? There are ways that can help make getting through the days easier for you too, like taping (there are pictures in the Heel Pain Book).

But in response to your question... again, I am not a doctor of course ... long hours on your feet CAN irritate, if not cause, PF. Everyone responds differently to treatments, and I suggest reading and asking questions here.

If you would like to, you can email me at (email removed)... I have really been through this, and would be more than happy to share with you, and just listen... because we all know how frustrating this can be.

You are not alone... I hope you find some relief soon...

Your friend, Val.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Carole C in NOLA on 3/04/02 at 12:47 (075635)

Ouch! I'm not a doctor, just a fellow PF sufferer, but this sounds awful. Yes, I think it could keep you from healing! Can you work standing on a rubber mat that is made to absorb impact, maybe? How about very thick soft orthotics? This sounds like a real problem to me, and a big one.

Carole C

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Ed Davis, DPM on 3/04/02 at 15:29 (075645)

Working on hard surfaces can slow the healing of plantar fascia. Pay close attention to shoegear. Can you wear a good running shoe at work?
Ed

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Sandy H. on 3/04/02 at 21:43 (075687)

I agree with the rubber mats. I put them in various places where I stand. even putting them under carpets.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

RACHAEL T. on 3/04/02 at 23:13 (075697)

Yes, yes, yes! Cement floors, brick walks, & tile floors are a killer for my PF - each & every time I attempt to walk for any length of time on these floors - I experience a few days afterwards with worse symptoms & pain. I recently made an attempt to shop at Sam's Club - leaving my husband inside the store only after 15 minutes of me walking on the cement floor!

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Julie on 3/05/02 at 02:00 (075704)

Hi Paula

Could you negotiate a change to sit-down duties for a while? Your feet will have a much better chance to heal if you can stay off them as much as possible.

I suggest you read the heel pain book (click on the link right here) for more information about PF and its causes and treatment. Icing, stretching, and drugs are only a small part of the picture. If you are going to see your podiatrist again, ask him about taping, which has been helpful to many, including me. Or see the section on taping in Part 2 of the heel pain book for instructions. Taping gives support to your arches, and may relieve the pain.

What stretches did your pod give you? Sometimes, weight-bearing stretching can make things worse, so please 'listen' to your feet and if they feel worse, take it easy, and post here for some other ideas.

Never go barefoot in the house (I know you wouldn't at work!) and always wear good, supportive shoes.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:45 (075723)

Thanks for your responce,I made my boss buy six thick mat for me to walk on...these mats are in almost every area that I walk on and they do help,but I find that if I forget to walk in a carefull way all day long that it feels like it pulls the muscles on the bottom of my feet and the pain starts up no matter what I do. Orthotics could be an area to explore,I wear new balance shoes that cost me $150 they are for walking all day, they help alot. I will ask my DR at my next apt to try some orthotics. thanks again..Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:51 (075725)

Thank you for your responce, I have gone through three pair of $100 shoes made for walking, a pair of hiking boots bought at REI for $200 and at presant I am wearing a pair of new balance all condition run walk hike shoes $150 which I have found has given me the best support yet.

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 09:54 (075726)

WOW!!! that sounds so familier. after work I have no life, I go home and sit all night..of corse now I get the pleasure of icing and stretching..which is bringing some relief, but then I go to work and it seems to undo everything.thanks Paula

Re: the mats were not enough for me

Valerie S on 3/05/02 at 18:07 (075765)

Hi Paula,

I can totally relate... at my job, we had big thick mats everywhere that people stood, and although they were more comfortable than the rest of the carpet (although also thickly padded on top of the concrete floors), by about an hour and a half into my shift, I was in tears... I tried to just walk through the pain, but it just got worse...

Not to sound like a broken record, but if you don't listen to your feet now, you could end up like me... I agree with Julie: is there any sit-down duties that you can do until your feet (hopefully) improve? Try talking to your doctor about your work. I found that my doctor was reluctant to tell me to take time off work... but I finally ended up begging him because I couldn't stand any longer! If it's possible, I'm sure your employer would prefer to let you sit-down, than to have you collecting workman's compensation or disability insurance...

Just a thought from someone who's really been there... I'm sorry to hear that you are suffering. Please listen to your feet...

Val.

Re: the mats were not enough for me

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 21:47 (075785)

Hi Valerie,thanks for your concernits just really nice to know that there are people out there who really do understand...and yes I spoke with my boss today about sitting down and doing some stretches when the pain becomes too great, he was ok with that idea but we're talking 20 minutes max if he or another person is presant who can run the line(i'm a line cook)thats helpfull...however after just a half an hour my feet start to kill me again, I do intend to speak with my DR if I don't start to improve with his plan of attack.thanks again Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Paula L on 3/05/02 at 22:02 (075787)

hi Julie, thanks for your responce. My POD gave me two stretching exercises both are designed to stretch the PF the ack tendon and the calf muscle....standing facing the wall without bending the knees you lean forward untill your heals feel a gentle pulling I am to hold this pose for a count of 40 I do that three times then I alternate feet, bending one knee while the other leg is straight...does that make sence? if these stretches have a formal name I'm gonna be really embarrest,if they do please forgive my lack of knowledge..do you know if there are more or better ones than this??? thanks Paula

Re: working on hard floors with PF

Julie on 3/05/02 at 22:14 (075790)

Paula, I'm going out in a minute, so will have to be quick. The 'wall stretches' have made a lot of PF sufferers worse. They can irritate the achilles tendon and the plantar fascia. Be very careful with them and if you find they are painful, stop. Make sure you do them correctly, with your hips, knees and ankles in line and don't arch your lower back.

If you search under 'Rudy', you'll find a series of simple yoga exercises for the feet that I posted some months ago which are not weight bearing. Non-weight-bearing stretches are better for PF. I believe.

But the main thing for you is - do try to get off your feet. Have you talked to your employers about a change to sit-down duties? Is it possible? Do try.