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March 2020

Monday, 30 March 2020 00:00

Flip Flops and How They Affect the Feet

Many people enjoy the ease of wearing flip flops. They have become a popular shoe to wear in the warmer months, and are available in bright colors. As attractive as they may seem to frequently wear, research has indicated there may be injuries that can happen to the feet due to their use. The feet may become tired and achy as a result of the toes grasping the shoe so it can remain on the foot.  Many flip flops are designed without having a built in arch, which may cause the feet to roll inward. It can be beneficial to choose flip flops that have a strap in the back, in addition to wearing more supportive shoes every other day. If you would like additional information about how flip flops may affect the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Flip-flops are not always the best choice of footwear. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from InStride Family Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

Flip-Flops and Feet

When the weather starts warming up, people enjoy wearing flip-flops.  Flip-flops are comfortable, stylish, and easy to slip on and off; they're perfect for any summer beach goer.  However, these shoes can cause harm to the feet.

How Can Flip-Flops Affect Me Long-Term?

  • Ankle problems
  • Hip problems
  • Lower back problems
  • Pain in the balls of the feet
  • Problems with foot arches
  • Changes in the way you walk

Are There Injuries Associated with Flip-Flops?

Yes.  Since flip-flops are relatively weak and do not provide the same amount of support as sneakers, people who wear flip-flops regularly are more susceptible to injuries. On top of that, the open nature of the shoe makes your feet more prone to other problems, such as cuts and even infections.  Common injuries and ailments include:

  • Sprained ankles
  • Blisters
  • Infections
  • Cuts and Scrapes

I like Wearing Flip-Flops. Are There Safe Alternatives?

When buying flip-flops, try to find ones that have sturdy soles and that are made of high-quality materials that will support for your feet.  These flip-flops will cost more but will also last longer as a result.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Raleigh and Henderson, NC.  We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flipping Out About Flip Flops
Published in Blog
Monday, 23 March 2020 00:00

Where Is The Tarsal Tunnel?

There is a portion of the foot that contains a narrow space which is located on the inside of the ankle. This is referred to as the tarsal tunnel. If this area becomes inflamed as a result of an injury, tarsal tunnel syndrome may develop. The symptoms that are often associated with this condition can include swelling, pain and discomfort surrounding the ankles, and patients may feel a tingling or burning sensation. Moderate relief may be found when the affected foot is taped, as this may help to keep it from moving. Additionally, wearing orthotic inserts may provide adequate cushioning as the healing process occurs. If you feel you have developed this condition, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer you the correct treatment.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact one of our podiatrists of InStride Family Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, which can also be called tibial nerve dysfunction, is an uncommon condition of misfiring peripheral nerves in the foot. The tibial nerve is the peripheral nerve in the leg responsible for sensation and movement of the foot and calf muscles. In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the tibial nerve is damaged, causing problems with movement and feeling in the foot of the affected leg.

Common Cause of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Involves pressure or an injury, direct pressure on the tibial nerve for an extended period of time, sometimes caused by other body structures close by or near the knee.
  • Diseases that damage nerves, including diabetes, may cause tarsal tunnel syndrome.
  • At times, tarsal tunnel syndrome can appear without an obvious cause in some cases.

The Effects of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Different sensations, an afflicted person may experience pain, tingling, burning or other unusual sensations in the foot of the affected leg.
  • The foot muscles, toes and ankle become weaker, and curling your toes or flexing your foot can become difficult.
  • If condition worsens, infections and ulcers may develop on the foot that is experiencing the syndrome.

A physical exam of the leg can help identify the presence of tarsal tunnel syndrome. Medical tests, such as a nerve biopsy, are also used to diagnose the condition. Patients may receive physical therapy and prescriptive medication. In extreme cases, some may require surgery.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Raleigh and Henderson, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Treating Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Published in Blog
Thursday, 19 March 2020 00:00

Reminder: When Was the Last Time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

Published in Blog
Monday, 16 March 2020 00:00

Can Certain Foods Cause Gout?

A type of inflammatory arthritis is referred to as gout. This can be a painful and debilitating foot condition that commonly affects the big toe. It may occur as a result of elevated uric acid levels in the blood, and can develop due to genetic factors, or from certain foods that are eaten. These types of foods often include red meat, shellfish, and drinks that have a high sugar content. Some of the symptoms that are associated with gout can include severe pain and discomfort, swelling, and it is often difficult to walk. If you have frequent gout attacks, it may be beneficial to consider eating healthier foods, and drinking plenty of water. For patients who are experiencing symptoms of this condition, it is strongly suggested that you seek a consultation with a podiatrist for professional care.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from InStride Family Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.

People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.

Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Raleigh and Henderson, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout
Published in Blog

It’s commonly known that it is best to stretch before partaking in any physical activity, especially when it comes to running. Certain stretches can be particularly helpful in strengthening the legs and feet, making your running experience more enjoyable, as well as helping to alleviate soreness once a run has been completed. When the foot is properly stretched, runners are able to build strength in their feet, and improve their mobility and elasticity of the foot, which in turn gives them a better chance at avoiding injury, such as rolling the ankle. The feet are often referred to as the foundation of the body, so the more stable they are, the more stable athletes can be while running. One stretch you can practice is referred to as the bear squat. Begin by kneeling on the floor with your toe curled under and sit back on your heels. Rock side by side while in this position to help stretch the foot, calf muscles, and tendons. Another useful stretch focuses mainly on the big toe, and is referred to as a toe lift. To begin, spread your toes and feet out on a flat surface. Keeping all other toes down, start to lift the big toe, holding for 2 seconds, and repeating this lifting motion 20 times. For more tips on how to best stretch and prepare your feet for a run, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist for professional advice and care.

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with one of our podiatrists from InStride Family Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous one, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising and ice and rest the foot. It is advised to then see a podiatrist for help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Raleigh and Henderson, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Stretching Your Feet
Published in Blog
Monday, 02 March 2020 00:00

Possible Causes of Flat Feet

The medical term that is referred to as flat feet occurs when there is no visible arch, or a significantly small arch, as the foot lies flat on the floor. Genetic factors may be a cause of this condition, as well as wearing shoes that do not fit correctly. This ailment may cause a general feeling of achiness in the feet, and it is possible that strained muscles in the calves can develop. Mild relief may be found when gentle stretching techniques are performed that are specifically designed to strengthen the arch area of the foot. Additionally, many patients find it beneficial to wear orthotics inside of their shoes, as this may provide the support that is needed to complete daily activities. If you have flat feet, it is suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can help you to manage this condition.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact one of our podiatrists from InStride Family Foot & Ankle Center. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Raleigh and Henderson, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What is Flexible Flat Foot?
Published in Blog
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