Perhaps one of the most common injuries that athletes, particularly runners, have to face is plantar fasciitis. For this reason, scientists have conducted a number of studies in hopes to find out the right solution for this problem.
There are a lot of treatments out there such as massaging the area with ice, physical therapy, exercises which have been designed to stretch the ligament of the plantar fascia, and using anti-inflammatory medicine. However, wearing the proper foot splint at night, while sleeping, is an effective treatment method you should try out.
What are night splints?
A night splint is a device that has been designed to help patients get relief from the pain that results due to an injury. In simpler words, it is a kind of brace that attaches to the foot as well as to the ankle and the lower leg.
The primary function of this device is to stretch out your plantar fascia ligament while you are sleeping to speed up the recovery process.
If you're suffering from such an immobilizing injury and are looking for the best night splint, then here are the top five Plantar Fasciitis Night Splints you should look into purchasing.
Each of them has their own benefits and disadvantages. Make sure you pick the one that you think would provide you with the greatest amount of comfort.
Our Top 5 – The Best Plantar Fasciitis Splints
#1 Cramer Dorsal Night Splint
This night splint weighs less and is comparatively less bulky than other splints available in the market. The brace has been designed in such a manner that it holds your feet in a neutral position which helps to relieve you from the morning discomfort and pain associated with the heel spur.
From the outside, this splint is made of hard plastic, and since the material is quite sturdy, your foot is kept in the right position at all times. The plastic is well molded without any rough edges and wraps around the side of your foot. It is also easily adjustable, and as a result, it does not cause any discomfort.
From the inside, the splint is lined with a fabric liner along with padding which provides a good amount of comfort between the plastic and your foot. The splint also has a fabric liner on the straps. It is safe to say that this is perhaps the most comfortable brace ever although it has a small slit in the cushions where the leg and the foot meet which does not have finished seams.
To sum it up, the splint is quite useful for all problems where a patient is required to hold the foot in only one position. Compared to the other braces in this list, this one is the least weighing and the least bulky which is quite ideal for a majority of people.
The splint has triple stitched straps which are stretch resistant, thus providing substantial support and fit. Compared to others, the design of this splint is low profile and considering all the benefits that the splint has; it's good value for the current price.
Tightening the straps to adjust the foot can sometimes become uncomfortable so take your time with the adjustment instead of rushing it. Also, the splint is a little wide which means that it's not suitable for people with small feet.
#2 Form Fit splint by Ossur
This product has been designed to provide patients relief from the discomfort and pain of foot related problems including plantar fasciitis. By holding the patient's foot in a gentle dorsiflexion, the splint permits the patient to stretch the plantar fascia and fasten the healing process consistently.
The splint has been kept lightweight so that the patients can sleep comfortably while wearing it. Moreover, for the safety of the patient, the sole is slip resistant.
Furthermore, this splint, by Ossie, is breathable, sturdy and has a low profile; such qualities make this splint an ideal medical product to have around when injured. The center-release buckle design of this splint makes it easier for the patient to wear it without experiencing any discomfort.
It comes in two color options, and the size varies from large to small catering for people with little feet as well. Inside the splint is a padded insert which can be removed and is washable.
The washable padded foam is also breathable which aids in the prevention of overheating. This enables you to keep the splint on without feeling that your foot is too warm and you need to air it out. In short, the other pros of this splint include the slip-resistant sole so that patients stay safe within their house and how less it weighs.
#3 Plantar Fasciitis Posterior Splint by MARS
Just like other splints, this brace has also been designed keeping in mind the nighttime pain patients of plantar fasciitis experience. This splint comes with buckles and three padded straps which ensure immobilization.
This product also has dual tension straps which allow increased flexion and optimum foot angle, contributing towards the optimum stretch for relieving pain. The low profile shell of the brace is breathable and sturdy which ensures quick treatment.
The open design of this night splint keeps the patient's foot dry and fresh. One feature that is unique to this splint is the fact that it has an air bladder at the juncture where the ankle and the foot meet.
The purpose of this is to provide increased comfort to you while you wear it. This particular splint helps in the recovery of plantar fasciitis by pulling the plantar fascia from above which passively stretches it.
A few benefits of this brace are that it's smaller than all the other posterior style splints; it's easier to wear and is considerably more comfortable. It is also lightweight.
However, getting the right fit is a challenge, and since it does not have any slip resistant component, there is a chance you might slip while walking. Also, getting used to this splint can take a considerable amount of time.
#4 Adjustable Night Splint by Futuro
This night splint is a useful sleep support device which has been designed to help alleviate the pain caused by plantar fasciitis without consuming any medication. Made from 60% polypropylene, the splint is completely adjustable to fit a variety of foot sizes ranging from size eight to size 15.
Wearing this product on your affected foot will provide you with maximum comfort while also keeping your foot at about 85 to 90 degrees, which are effective therapeutic angles.
The straps that keep the brace in its place are also comfortable and allow patients to walk even while wearing this splint. The breathable soft foam in the inner part of this brace reduces the discomfort one would feel due to wearing a splint.
What makes this splint unique is that it doesn't have the typical boot designs that night splints usually have. Therefore, the unique design of this product helps the patient to walk easily while wearing it while also providing a significant amount of comfort while sleeping. The splint is less bulky, and the material is breathable as well as comfortable.
Due to all of these qualities, this product comes with a number of benefits. Firstly, this splint is portable which means that you can even travel with it. Secondly, because it is comparatively less bulky, it is easier to wear and taking it off.
Moreover, the design of this product is less intrusive. This brace is more breathable and better adjustable than a common boot design splint. Due to its flexible and efficient design, it can easily be worn on feet of any size. However, one con that customers feel this splint has is that it might not be a quick healer compared to a boot designed splint.
#5 Posterior Sure Stretch splint
Just like other night splints, this one also stretches the plantar fascia while sleeping. The loop straps and the lateral hook help to easily adjust the dorsiflexion. Apart from the treatment of plantar fasciitis, this night splint is also effective for heel pain, Achilles tendonitis, and heel spurs.
The buckle comes with three straps which facilitate free size adjustment while the inner layer of soft foam provides patients comfort during sleeping.
This multi-purpose night splint comes with a set of advantages and disadvantages. Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of this night splint is that it's not suitable for people that move around or roll a lot while sleeping.
On the other hand, this splint has slip resistant tread which ensures the safety of the patient's foot. The interior of this foot splint is breathable as well as washable. Moreover, since the flexion is adjustable, you can have control over the stretch of the dorsal flexion.
Things to Keep In Mind When Buying a Night Splint
Some of the factors that can help you in deciding which night splint to purchase include:
- Sturdy Material.
- Easy to Wear.
- Provides Relief from Pain.
- Features Breathable Material.
- Is a Proper Fit.
Considering all the benefits and the ease that each of the splints on this list can provide you, the Cramer Dorsal Splint is highly recommended. However, any of these foot splints can help you recover from Plantar Fasciitis in an efficient manner. Make sure that you keep in mind everything mentioned about these splints so you can make an informed buying decision.
Amy is a foot massage therapist that has worked with doctors specializing in podiatry while helping numerous clients through various foot conditions. She has reviewed 100s of related foot health products for plantar fasciitis, toenail fungus and more.