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That same evening I played golf in my weekly golf league, and was talking to one of my team mates about orthotics, only to discover that he was well aware of this affliction and in fact had been suffering from it for a couple of years! what I also discovered was that he wore orthitics in his shoes, that he had only paid $24.00 for. We compared his to mine, and found that with exception of material they were made of, and a small variation in size, they were identical.
Later that evening I got on Internet and researched symptoms, causes, treatments and long term prognosis for plantar fasciitis. Treatments range from stretching exercises to surgery, with over 90% of persons afflicted being helped substantially with stretching exercises and orthotics. I also found that there was little difference in recovery using "custom orthotics" vs. "off shelf" products. Treatment using these methods lasts 2 to 30 months, with average patient being helped in about 9 months.
The next day I returned to chain store and demanded a refund, same technician who had helped me day before and store manager, went into a prolonged explanation that they were aware of competing brand which they said were made of inferior materials, which would break down very quickly, and they were not available in as wide an array of sizes. Again we compromised and I ended up with a refund of $197.00.
Later that day I went online to DrLeonards.com searched for Phase 4 orthotics, and bought enough for all of my pairs of shoes for $14.95 a pair! Of course you don't need a pair for each pair of shoes, you can switch them from pair to pair.
I wore these devices for about 12 - 18 months and then stopped wearing them more than 2 years ago, heel pain that I had experienced has not returned, I now do recommended foot exercises before a long walk, or just at random when I think of it, and I know I can always go back to orthotics if I need to. In that length of time "off shelf" orthotics performed just as well as 1 pair of "custom" orthotics that I was using and showed no sign of deterioration.
Note: This is a description of what worked for me, and may not work for you. If you suffer described symptoms, you should consult your Dr. and follow his or her advise.
Resources for more information:
Heel That Pain
American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons American Academy of Family Physicians
To Your Health,
Jimmie Newell is the webmaster for http://www.ToYourHealth101.com, a health & wellness website, featuring editorials, tips, information and links addressing many of the health issues of today.