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Posted by Rich on 11/03/03 at 11:54 (136255)

have had PF for four months now. I caught it early, and was in the Podiatrist's office a week after symptoms started. Since then I have tried everything in an attempt to rid myself of this. I have had 4 cortisone shots (I know too many and absolutely no more), PT, acupuncture, custom orthotics, a night splint relative rest, and NSAIDS. Sometimes I think I might be improving, but the next day if feels as worse as ever. My patience is being tested, and I can honestly say that its really getting me down. It feels like it will never go away. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to deal with the mental stress I am suffering from?

Re: Mental Stress

Rich on 11/03/03 at 11:55 (136256)

Real title of my posting

Re: Mental Stress

R C on 11/03/03 at 12:14 (136259)

I once saw a Barbara Walters feature program about a fascinating couple. They were both blind and deaf (i.e., neither one could see or hear). They could only communicate by hand-to-hand signalling. Nonetheless, they went on with their lives, earning master's degrees, meeting each other and falling in love. The gentleman even cooked dinner for Barbara (chicken cacciatore, I believe) on the show. I was so touched by their courage and their devotion I was practically in tears.

I also thought if they can persevere through their unimaginably severe impairment, I can certainly handle my heel pain.

Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/03/03 at 12:36 (136260)

Unfortunately, PF and mental stress do seem to go together to a huge extent. As you've undoubtedly discovered, not being able to live your life in a way that is normal for you can be very stressful!! Constant pain can really wear a person down, too.

Making things worse, is the fact that most people who have never had PF, have no idea what you're coping with. Despite that, you need to give yourself a break. There are things like most housework, shopping, and museums that you may need to let slide, until you are better. Let your feet rest and heal, and try to give yourself a break as far as guilt goes. That's hard, but just try not to feel guilty for not doing things.

Here are some tips to cheer you up:

1. Order a really good book from Amazon.com.

2. Try massaging your feet with lotion that has a scent you appreciate; that may not help your PF, but it may make you feel more positive towards your #$)(*%& feet!

3. Post on the board when you have 'had it' with your feet. We all know exactly what you mean.

A cheerful statistic is that 90-95% of PF patients get completely better in less than a year. Most of the people who post here are the worst cases and are not typical (that's why they're here). It may not seem like it now, but you will probably be better in a few months.

Carole C

Re: Mental Stress

AngelaC on 11/03/03 at 12:41 (136261)

I had pf for about 3 months (?) back in 1995. I seemed to be able to resolve it fairly easily then with stretching, orthotics, NSAIDs. . . and I got way too casual about it. Now it's back with a vengeance (past 4-5 months), partly because I stupidly got a pedometer and aimed for 10,000 steps a day---with bad shoes and ignoring pain. Now I'm very seriously doing whatever I can to heal. . . and I use my pedometer to limit my steps to the lowest possible number. I'm also obsessing about this board, and trying to figure out exactly what's up with my feet that I got it. But I've also noticed how sad so many people get with this, and how unbelievably life impacting it can be to have to limit my mobility. I'm trying to take the emotional stress part seriously as well by making sure that every day, I make an effort to notice any little sign of improvement. Can I get out of bed after stretching without lurching from dresser to door frame? Am I willing to drink liquids even if it means a trip to the bathroom in the near future? Can I get down the stairs? Am I waking up in pain at night? Where am I now compared to a month ago? To help avoid discouragement,I don't want to let any sign of improvement to go un-noticed ; I also don't want to get casual again about improvement and launch into walking too much, wearing bad shoes, stopping stretching too soon. Initially, in my eagerness for improvement, I think I over-stretched and hurt my foot. Another thing that's been important for me is to arrange alternatives for enjoying myself, if I can't walk/garden/shop/get to my son's cross country meet/help w/volunteer stuff. I bought a pair of headphones to listen to NPR archives (there's some really funny ones.; I'm watching more DVDs than I thought I ever would; I learned how to crochet from the internet to make baby sweaters for mission kits; this year, Christmas shopping is going to be over the internet. If my kids were little, I'd be finding a way to arrange life played on the floor. I'd also use a pedometer to find those saboteur steps to find strategies to avoid takin them. By the way,I'm one of those people whom birks helps considerably. Good luck! Angela

Re: Rich

Lari S. on 11/03/03 at 13:45 (136270)

Rich, the stress of dealing with constant pain, especially when others around you have no way to understand what your are going through, can really have a detrimental affect on your mental health. When I feel sorry for myself, I think of others I know who have to deal with life threatening medical issues that they may not live through. It really puts my pain in perspective. I also try and reward myself for the things I DON'T do, even though in my mind I think whatever it is should/has to be done. It will still be there tomorrow. Treat yourself to a great massage, find a hobby (off your feet) that you can lose yourself in, read some book that you've been meaning to get around to. Some times I just set up my water foot massager, put my feet in, and just relax. I bought a book on reflexology and acutally got my husband to also read it. Mutual reflex massage can be fun, and may take your mind off your pain. (He's not a great believer in reflexology, but has enjoyed it none the less.) Most of all, give yourself time to heal. You didn't develop this over night, and it does take time to get better. Continue to check out what others say here, and post when you have issues/concerns, or just need to blow off stress.

Re: Rich

marie on 11/03/03 at 14:13 (136274)

Hi Rich,

There is nothing fun about chronic pain. Do you feel anxiety or a sense of hopelessness? There is a diference. Please consult your doctor. Tell him what you are feeling. Depression and or anxiety can be treated both medically and with counseling. It may be that you just have a bad case of the blues. I was a healthy active person before PF and TTS it took 2 years to heal but I had to get serious about my health. I got a bad case of the blues and came here for advice. I am passing the same advice I got to you now. You will heal! You will adjust! And we are here for you! This gang here suggested I take up a hobby....I settled on making pillows...after fifty million pillows my family said NO MORE! LOL I did get well and the pillows helped me get my mind off my pain. Find something that you can really get into...nothing stressful....something to distract you from your feet and give you some purpose. Stick around we're always doing something fun here.

best wishes marie

Re: Rich

John H on 11/03/03 at 17:12 (136288)

Rich: I know the first months of my PF were the worst emotionally for me as I had to give up all the things that I loved most. Running,exercise, basketb all, baseball, etc. You bet I was depressed, anxious, and stressed. It is now 8 years later. I still have PF. It is either better or I have adapted. I am not sure which. Keep on rowing for shore. The first months are the worst. Some go on to get totally cured. Some achieve tremeondous improvement from some of the methods on this board and some adapt.

Re: Rich

Julie on 11/04/03 at 02:01 (136312)

Rich, can you swim? I ask because regular exercise has a beneficial effect on the mind and emotions as well as on the body. I know you're aware of this because you're a walker, but now you have to limit walking so you're without that activity. Swimming is one form of exercise that PF sufferers CAN do (it's probably the best all-round exercise there is for anybody, anyway). If you have a pool near you, get to it and swim as often as you can. It will lift your spirits.

PF IS depressing, and part of the depression is the effect on the body's chemistry of sitting around wondering if our feet will ever get better. I mentioned 'rest' on the treatments board, and that's important, but you also need to find a regular form of exercise that is non weight bearing, and swimming fills the bill. It always gives me a good feeling - and did even when I had PF.

Re: Rich

Rick R on 11/04/03 at 09:57 (136339)

I was still playing football, basketball and running significant miles when this hit me back in 1983. I do believe things happen for a reason. Our second screaming short person was born and perhaps I needed a little shove to be more of a father and less of a kid on the playground. PF was one of the forces that caused me to go the grad school. I can't say I wouldn't have gone anyway but who knows. Somewhere in the process my attitude changed from a focus on what I had lost and was losing to a nothing to lose perspective and attitude. I can tell you quite specifically what changed me. I was watching a news program 20/20 or some such, and they did a feature on one of the Kennedy's. I forget whom, but it is the guy that lost a leg. There he was running for charity on bits of plastic and aluminum or titanium while I was sitting on my but feeling sorry for myself. I don't recommend all aspects of my formula but I had at that point failed to get any doctor to take the situation seriously. How many times did I need to go in every 3 weeks to be told I'd be fine in three weeks? I took control, started to look at anatomy books and apply my engineering background as though I was dealing with any other mechanical structure. It's the control factor that made the mental state turn for the better. Hopefully by engaging the fine people here you can feel the same sense of control. I'll never be rid of this but I have regained a great deal. I have been able to run again but not without modifications and restrictions and setbacks. I did manage to do the run for breast cancer with my daughter and her friends one year. They did about 20 miles and I did 5 but that was 5 more than any of the other parents!


Re: Rich

JudyS on 11/04/03 at 10:48 (136348)

Rich you've obviously hit a pretty sensitive spot here as pretty much every one of us has had to, at one time or another, come to grips with the depression and anxiety that PF brought with it.
And look at all the great replies you've gotten! I've always thought that the emotional part of PF was nearly more difficult than the physical.
My own experience mirrored Rick's to a degree - it wasn't until I decided to 'take control' that both the physical and the mental aspects of PF began to improve.

Re: Rich

Suzanne D. on 11/04/03 at 11:14 (136352)

Rich, you've been given so much great advice here; I don't know if I can add anything more of value for you! I would suggest for you to print out these posts so you can refer to them whenever you feel down. Sometimes, just knowing that others understand can make a great difference!

And try to remember that most all of us have our 'ups and downs' with PF. It is easy to panic when you have felt some improvement and then feel worse again. We've been there! It's a roller-coaster ride.

Read all you can and try everything possible to see what helps you the most. As Rick and Judy said (and maybe others; I don't have the best memory!), feeling as if you are taking control of the situation can help lessen the stress.

Then when you've done and are doing all you can possibly do, try to have other things on your mind besides your feet. I can remember that being a hurdle for me. I got so VERY tired of thinking about my feet and having that constantly on my mind! Do something with your hands (I learned to make bracelets.), and if you can do something to help someone else, it will lift your spirits.

Keep posting here, and know we understand and care!
Suzanne :)

Re: Rich

Aly on 11/04/03 at 16:49 (136378)

Hi Rich,

I'm late in replying but wanted to do so, as I also experienced depression as a result of my PF. It got to the point that I'd wake up in the feeling so sad, right off the bat. After waiting several months for it to 'lift' I finally got tired of being so unhappy all the time, and asked my GP if I could try a low dose of anti-depressants. When she heard what I'd been experiencing (not just emotionally, but with my feet & the resulting isolation) she said she could see how anyone might become depressed under such circumstances.

One month into taking Celexa, I started waking up feeling good again. If you continue to feel overwhelmed by what's happened to you, please consider trying an anti-depressant. It really made all the difference - and it gave me back my hope of healing & the energy to be proactive about it.

Good luck! And when you're feeling down, do post!!


Re: Rich

Ellen J. on 11/04/03 at 20:24 (136393)

Hi Rich,
I remember many times when I felt quite depressed and anxious and it was during the times when the pain was at it's worst and I was worried that I would never have normal feet again. After so much enjoyable running and lifting weights, hiking, bicycling, etc. I kept sitting there stuck on the couch, thinking, 'I can't believe this has happened to me'. I would then start to sink into depression but since that feeling was so horrible, I used various techniques to keep from sinking too low. Mainly I pretended that all was going to be OK eventually, and I would trick myself into feeling positive. My former husband laughs and tells me I'm the only person he knows that can fool herself. As soon as I would have even ONE depressing thought I would immediately distract myself so I couldn't spiral downward and that really helped alot. Also, I kept myself very busy with lots of interesting things that didn't require alot of movement. Volunteering as a wildlife rehabilitator helped. I took in (and still take) orphaned baby wild animals and birds which have to be fed every 30 minutes. Along with running a business, that kept me distracted! Also, I had to re-train my brain to actually not care if I exercised. That was hard, and took many months. I didn't really heal up until I got to that point because as long as I was in 'wanting to go for a run mode', I was always trying to run and messing up my feet again. Same with other exercises for a while--I had to quit doing too much and rest.
Well, I had better end another long and rambling letter before I bore you to tears. Keep seeking information--I believe that's the key!
Ellen J.

Re: P.S.

Ellen J. on 11/04/03 at 20:31 (136394)

One more thing--I ditto what Julie says. If you can find a form of exercise that does not hurt your feet, go for it! That would be the best thing. Since I hate anything cold and wet, I didn't swim. I do remember that I was able to bicycle at some point, with high repetitions and low resistance (so I didn't have to push hard on the pedals). If you do try any form of exercise, wait a day or two afterward to see how your feet react. The reaction may not occur for one, two or three days after the activity. Whenever I tried anything new, I only tried it once, then waited to see how my feet felt afterward. Bad experiences taught me to be cautious, a valuable lesson for me.
Ellen J.

Re: Rich

Rose on 11/04/03 at 22:05 (136404)

I battled PF for a long long time, and I know how discouraged one can get. I used to do dancy exercise classes four times a week and even was an instructor at times. I was a dancer in various productions. I had to give it all up, my outlet, my aerobic friends, my stress outlet. I ended up using a wheel chair, and believe it or not, I actually got used to it and I could see how it would be to spend a life like that. I could only imagine how difficult it might be to be paralized and have to live like that, and it made me feel blessed that I could walk, even if it was very painful. I finally gave in and had the surgery last July. I spent two more months in the wheel chair healing, since I had both feet done at once. Now I am sooooo much better. ALmost no pain at all. I take no pain meldication and can actaully go to a mall. I am not completely healed, but I expect to be able to be almost if not completely pain free in several more months. I have had no physical therapy as of yet and probably won't need it. Some days I have no pain at all.I do water aerobics in a senior class 3-4 times a week which really really helps....deep water only. No jumping on toes etc. I also wear the boot to bed about half of the time on both feet which keeps me stretched and seems to keep any pain away. Nobody said to do this, but I discovered it really helped in the healing. I was in the boot a month after the surgery all the time.
So there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I have been to the worst place with this,have adapted to not walking (had a grrat time at Disneyland in a wheel chair with my grandkids) etc. Now I feel wonderful and wish I had done this a long time ago. So there is hope. In my case I had to go all the way and have the surgery. But it has worked. I actually feel that I might be back to aerobic classes in a light way sometime in the future. Hang in there. ILf all else fails, surgery can be a lifesaver.

Re: P.S.

Carole C in NOLA on 11/04/03 at 22:10 (136405)

I can't wait until I can manage to ride my exercycle (= 'recumbent bicycle'). It gave me PF when I rode it barefoot.

After I had healed and been essentially all better for six months, I adjusted it better and tried it again with my Birkenstocks, doing a moderate number of repetitions at low resistance so I didn't have to push hard on the pedals. It sounded like it would work, but my beloved Birkenstocks were a Big Mistake when riding the exercycle! I had a relapse.

I haven't tried again, though it's been quite a while. The next time, I am going to wear my orthotics and tie-up SAS shoes, and I'm going to go slowly at low resistance and try to make sure that I'm riding with 'good form'. I sure hope that works.

I probably sound like I'm obsessed with this one form of exercise, but I bought the bike and it's sitting in my living room, and it's a form of exercise that I actually like and would do (if you knew me, you'd know how unlikely that is).

Not only that, my bike is silent, comfortable, and generally I really like it a lot. I can even read or watch TV while I ride, and it has a drink holder for my water. It makes my knees feel whole lots better to ride it (I have osteoarthritis and I bought it for that and for weight loss).

If I can't ride it with my orthotics and tie-up shoes, I suppose I would have to sell it. :(

That's partly why I'm waiting so long to try it again. Maybe this Christmas.

Carole C

Re: Mental Stress

Bob G. on 11/05/03 at 00:58 (136411)

Learn to walk on your hands. This will not only eliminate heel pain, but the additional blood to the brain will lessen the mental stress.

Re: P.S.

Ellen J. on 11/05/03 at 07:41 (136420)

Hi Carole,
Hopefully your newest idea will work so you can bicycle soon. One thing I read (which you probably know) is not to allow the toes to rotate downward at each pedal stroke, which can aggravate the achilles tendon. I'm not a knowlegeable bicyclist though, so take what I say with a grain of salt. Apparently though, the feet should remain in the same position in relation to the lower leg without the ball of foot area doing any 'toe pointing' at each stroke. If I'm wrong on that hopefully someone will correct me.
Sounds like you already know that since you were talking about good form. I admire the fact that you are willing to use the bike. I got one and am too darned lazy to get on it because I want to run instead! I'm a spoiled brat, I guess.
Ellen J.

Re: P.S.

john h on 11/05/03 at 09:23 (136427)

Carole: I have rode the recumbient bike the last 3 days in a row for 40 minutes. The bike really never bothers my PF. I keep my feet well into the stirrups and do not crank up the tension to high so as to cause me to have to bare down to pedel. For my feet this seems to be one of the lesser evils for PF and you can still get a cardio workout. We also have TV's in front of our bikes at the club and you can guess what channel I watch---FOX. Sorry!

Re: P.S.

R C on 11/05/03 at 10:58 (136436)

I also have a recumbent bike. I find that if I set the resistance pretty low, I can go for a long time without irritating my foot.

Funny thing -- my TV is right in front of my bike, and I almost always have it uned to the Food Network!

Re: Rich

JudyS on 11/05/03 at 11:29 (136440)

Wow Rose - your notes here about your surgery and healing are terrific! It's nice to hear more about surgury and it's nice to know that you are rebounding (in a manner of speaking :) ) . Do you think you'll go back to dancing?

Re: P.S.

Carole C in NOLA on 11/05/03 at 13:30 (136442)

Thanks for the tips. I'll try to pay more attention to the position of my feet with respect to my lower leg. Maybe that's the problem!! My feet kind of flop around all over the place when I'm riding. The pedals do have toe straps on them, but the pedal itself turns so I can still get various (probably undesirable) angles. I suspect that maintaining the pedal at the same angle with respect to the floor, throughout the cycle, is preferable.

Another aspect of form that I need to watch, is whether or not my legs remain lined up with the forward direction rather than one of my knees lopsing outwards and turning my foot when it does that. I am a very sloppy rider and my excuse used to be some neurological problems from the 1980's, but I'm over those at present and I CAN ride correctly, so I just need to make a conscious effort to get it together.

Well, I admire you for wanting to run! Each to her own, I guess. I am just made for an exercise bike, except for the fact that I keep re-injuring myself on it! I like riding my exercycle in the comfort of my home, where I can watch TV or read or whatever while I ride. I also like the challenge of being able to write down the time and distance, and even graph how I'm doing while I am riding sometimes! And most of all, I like what it does for my knees and my general level of happy bounciness as I stumble through life.

I'm sure that will be more difficult for me to graph my progress while riding once I am able to build up my distance; so far, although I've gone fast enough to feel improvement in my arthritic knees, I've never gotten to the aerobic part before my feet got messed up.


Re: P.S.

Carole C in NOLA on 11/05/03 at 13:37 (136444)

John, I had the tension on the very lowest (zero) the last time I hurt my PF, and I was never able to get over about 5-6 minutes before my PF got messed up again. Not enough for a cardio workout yet, but I had my hopes.

I think that maybe Ellen is right about the angle of the foot affecting my Achilles tendon, since my PF is associated with a lot of Achilles tendonitis usually. Also, I was wearing my Arizonas to ride the last time I messed up my feet, and they didn't 'stay put' with the arch bumps where they should be.

And hey, I love watching FOX news too! I would love to ride my exercycle while I do.

Thing is, I've been putting it off for several months because if I re-injure my PF again, I might never be able to ride it. I will just have to get up my nerve and try again.

Last time I even did a lot of gentle stretching before and after. If life was fair, I'd be riding for an hour every day with impunity.

Carole C

Re: Rich

colleen on 11/05/03 at 22:50 (136517)

Dear Rich,
Boy, does your story sound familiar. I need help too and I can't find any relief. I feel at 32 years old that my life has come to a complete stand still. Heal spurs for 2 years, cortisone shots,2 pair of orthotics, feet wrapped, what else is there to do??? Emotionally I already have problems with depression, and this situation is not helping. All i can say is I literally feel your pain. I live in Stuart, Florida and if you find some help let me know. Maybe one day we can live a normal life again. 5 podiatrists later and I'm still looking. Someone has to help! Hang in there! colleen

Re: Rich

colleen on 11/05/03 at 23:11 (136518)

I just went through all the responses to your first email. Making pillows, bracelets, crafts, please give me a break. I have depression in my family,unfortunately, but mine also comes with anxiety. I'm not crazy, but if these people think crafts are going to help with depression, they obviously dont know what true depression is. I can barely hold my job due to these feet problems. But I also have to keep my job because I have my insurance through my job. I have gained 50 pounds due to anti-depressants, and also from not being able to walk. I have crutches I use at home just to walk from the couch to the bathroom. It's pathetic.
The problem is that most of these doctors are just trying to drain money out of your pocket instead of fixing it. I would give any doctor any amount of money to cut these things out of me. It's true that you need to find something to keep your mind off of the pain and sadness, but in reality if a doctor could fix this problem,I could loose weight, be able to walk, and actually begin to live a normal life. Is that too much to ask?

Re: Rich

nancy s. on 11/05/03 at 23:42 (136519)

colleen: many people here know firsthand what 'true' (clinical) depression and/or anxiety is.


Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/06/03 at 07:50 (136529)

And also, Colleen, most of us would not hesitate to have surgery if that was truly an answer for us. Unfortunately, for most people it's not and it can often make one's feet worse instead of better. Self treatment seems to have a statistically higher rate of success than does surgery. Hence, the message board.

Carole C

Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/06/03 at 07:56 (136530)

There's a whole lot else to do, Colleen. Begin by studying Scott's heel pain book (a free webpage on this site), read the message boards, and ask questions. Most of the treatments to successfully improve your feet are things you can do and should be doing yourself; they are not things you can rely on a doctor or podiatrist to do to you. Gentle stretching, icing, good choices in shoes, rest, never going barefoot, and more can go into successful resolution of heel pain.

Carole C

Re: Rich

JudyS on 11/06/03 at 09:00 (136535)

Boy Colleen do I ever feel your pain - if you'll pardon the expression! Seriously, though, I know exactly what you're saying. Serious and/or clinical depression is no stranger to these message boards. Rolling through doctor after doctor isn't either. You're a pretty normal PF person. I guess that, for some, real relief didn't start until we sat ourselves down and said 'Self, you gotta take control'. Well, isn't THAT easier said than done? But the fact is that, for many of us, relief really didn't start until we had that little talk with ourselves. In my case, I reasoned that all four docs I saw probably knew a bit about PF,I reasoned that I could find out more (my motto is 'PF is not a mystery - it's an inflammation!') and I admitted to 'self' that I wasn't really following traditional protocol all that well.
So I stopped sitting as much (FAR too frustrating), learned how much I could move around and made that time productive so I didn't feel so much like a slug, designed my own flexing/stretching routine, and RELIGIOUSLY followed traditional protocol. I began to improve by very tiny little increments - there are definately no leaps and bounds with PF.
I found the ART method of 'massage' with a physical therapist, and I had ESWT twice with Dr. Z.
It took a very long time but I was absolutely determined to avoid surgery - too many instances of that creating other foot problems for me to be comfy with the idea without truly following the traditional methodology first.
And believe it or not, I even made potholders during my 'sitting' phase! My sister-in-law had given me a couple of homemade ones and I found that I liked using them better than the store-bought. It was a decent feeling to make even the sitting time productive.
It's taken four years but I'm about 95% good. The remaining 5% occurs when I'm on my feet too much and that soreness abates after just a few hours- certainly no more than a day.
And, yes, I was no less affected than you are and I sure, sure remember when I was certain that I'd never be active again!

Re: Rich

colleen on 11/06/03 at 22:42 (136611)

Hello carol, thanks for responding. It is nice to know there are alot of people out there who understand. I do wear the new balance shoes,always. Other than working I'm mostly sitting, and I do massage my feet and use the stretching techniques. What else is there????? If my right foot was bad before my orthotics and all the shoes etc, then why is my left foot going bad now?

Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/06/03 at 23:38 (136619)

Good news! There's a whole lot more to learn, and you can do so on this site.

For example, you say 'I do wear the new balance shoes,always', and while New Balance are one type of good shoe, I don't think most of us here who have recovered would have done so, had we worn just one type of shoe every day. It really helps to change to different types of shoes during the day, and from week to week.

Have you tried Birkenstocks in the evenings and around the house? For example, what kind of shoes do you wear if you have to get out of bed in the middle of the night for some reason (check on a baby, use the bathroom, check out a noise, etc)? I like my Birkenstocks for this, because they are easy to slip into in the dark.

You said you are stretching, but how do you stretch? If you are doing wall stretches or stair stretches, that can actually aggravate your PF, believe it or not! The best are the gentle, non-weightbearing stretches such as Julie's Yoga stretchs (click on the word 'Yoga' to read about them).

What kind of shower shoes are you wearing when you shower or bathe, and do you use a shower stool as well as your shower shoes?

I never did any taping, but some people say it is wonderful. Are you the same colleen that posted that she is a waitress? If you are, taping might make a huge difference for you. I'm sorry my memory is so bad about who is who on the board. I guess I'm just getting old.

It takes a while to get the details of these treatments right. I am still learning, and I am essentially over my PF. There is still a whole lot of hope for you, if you take control (as Judy has said) and work hard at these treatment, and at listening to what your feet are telling you. If your feet hurt from doing something, don't do it (until you are mostly healed, anyway).

Most (or all?) people with substantial PF in one foot end up with PF in both feet after some time has passed. That's the nature of the condition, not a result of any treatments.

Carole C

Re: Rich

colleen on 11/07/03 at 00:28 (136623)

Hi, Carol. Yes this is the waitress. I have 2 pair of new balance and i wear one for work and the other for errands etc. The only person who has ever told me to do stretches actually was not one of the 5 doctors, it was a man in a shoe store. The step stretches...but i recently was given the rocker pro stretch thing. shower shoes? Thought of that before, but it's the only time my feet breathe.I do not own Birkenstocks, but i slip on sturdy slip on sandals if I have to get up. Thank God I have a wonderful husband, because he literally is my gopher.When the podiatrist taped my foot, of course it felt alittle better, but nothing in the long run. The shots are truely a waste of time.Actually the orthotics hurt too.Inform me on the shower shoes and the type you wear. I live in FL,and I have been reading this whole web site.The electric shock thing sounds interesting, but expensive. And it looks like the nearest doctor for that is 4 hours away from me. Thanks for all your input and yes your help. Nobody seems to have all the answers, but it is nice to chat with someone who understands. As of waitressing,I have limited myself to 32 hours a week, just enough to keep my insurance. And I take the station nearest to the kitchen so that I don't have to walk fast or pound my feet. Keep the advice comming, I need it.

Re: Rich

colleen on 11/07/03 at 00:38 (136625)

What is the thought on coral calcium?

Re: Colleen--Depression

LorindaN on 11/07/03 at 07:12 (136646)

Colleen I was wondering if you have ever had your thyroid checked? Seems depression, PF, weight gain, as well as many other factors go hand in hand with thyroid problems.. I have hypothyroidism. I have fought depression for over 10 years, I am 32. Now in May 2003 my left foot was killing me.... by June both feet and I have found its likely related to my thyroid problems. Incidentally my thyroid levels jumped up around this period of time. I have had some really bad days recently dealing with PF or whatever is wrong with my feet. Depression was getting the better of me..I just recently upped my meds for depression... crying for hours and hours a day I couldnt take it anymore.. What antidepressant are you on? I am on EffexorXR,,, I tried several before I found one that made me feel like a human. And my doc recommended this one because its supposed to help supress your appetite-help lose weight. For my feet I have:gone to physical therapy, do stretches daily, ice my feet(helps most so far of all I have tried), taping didnt seem to help me at all... I found my feet swelling too much which only caused more pain, I have been on NSAIDS, orthotics, New Balance shoes which do help, tho I cant wear them all day. And I have an appt next week(considering cortisone shots) I love my Birkenstocks, I have loved them for years,,, before PF,,, and have noticed my feet feel a whole lot better when I wear them. You should think about trying a pair, if its a possibility. I wear nothing but my Birks and New Balances... made the mistake one time of wearing Sketchers, it was not even an hour and I felt like I was going to fall down my feet hurt so bad. If you need someone to talk to,, email me
(email removed).

Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/07/03 at 08:04 (136654)

Well, then the good news is that you HAVEN'T tried everything! There is still more to try. Shower shoes can make a big difference, as can changing the attitude so that you don't take even one step, or stand, without your shoes or sandals on. If you don't have shower shoes, and you don't change your shoes midway through work, and you don't have Birkenstocks to wear around the house, there are still more things to try. Try taping on your own; maybe your podiatrist didn't do a good job of it.

Your husband sounds great. Good for you to get the station nearest to the kitchen!

Attitude is everything; you CAN take this bull by the horns and recover from PF.

Carole C

Re: Rich

Carole C in NOLA on 11/07/03 at 08:15 (136656)

Good news, Colleen! You haven't anywhere near tried everything and in fact you have hardly gotten started in trying things. So you can have hope. :)Some of the things you haven't begun to explore yet are shower shoes, Birkenstocks, changing your shoes midway through the work day, and taping on your own (probably the podiatrist just didn't do a very good job of it).

You asked what kind of shower shoes to buy. Of course the best would be something like the Birkenstock 'Haiti', but they cost about $60. My PF seemed to improve tremendously even with the ones I bought a month after getting PF, which were a $20 waterproof sandal by Nike that has soles an inch thick. That provides a whole lot of cushioning. They don't make that Nike sandal any more, but I think any thick waterproof sandal could be a big help.

Try a pair of Birkenstock Arizonas around the house. They aren't cheap but many of us have found them to be helpful.

Since your husband is so helpful, get HIM to run the errands! Really, you should be resting those feet. Good for you to take the station nearest the kitchen and to have limited your hours! And good luck to you.

Carole C

Re: Oops!

Carole C in NOLA on 11/07/03 at 08:16 (136657)

When I posted the first time, I didn't think it took. So, I tried to remember what I said, and posted the second time. OOPS!!!

Carole C

Re: An interesting post on the topic of taping

Carole C in NOLA on 11/07/03 at 08:25 (136659)


If you go to the 'Treatments/Symptoms/Products' message board on this website, there is a thread called ' Taping Problems' (perhaps the fourth or fifth one down the page.)

It's a good thread for you to read since taping hasn't worked for you yet, ESPECIALLY Julie's post near the bottom which goes into taping methods in wonderful detail. :)

Carole C

Re: Colleen--Depression

john h on 11/07/03 at 10:52 (136670)

A thyroid profile should be one of the first things a Doctor checks for in patients reporting anxiety. If this is the problem you can get an almost instant cure. I have a good friend of many years who is an Orthopedic Surgeon and he suffered from severe panic attacks. What finally helped him was an anti seizure drug clonazepam. He was able to resume his practice and flatly told me it saved his life.. Apparently there are several anti seizure drugs that are successfully used to treat depression and anxiety.. Wonder what the connection is? They are not seratonin reuptake type drugs

Re: Colleen--Depression

nancy s. on 11/07/03 at 11:00 (136673)

you are right, john. i started having whopper panic attacks in 1984, for no apparent reason (it's biochemical). after years of trying absolutely every approach to get them under control, including meds, the only one i found that truly works is clonazepam (that's the generic; klonopin was the initial brand name it came out under).

i suggest that anyone suffering from panic disorder or severe anxiety discuss the possibilities of this med with his or her doc.