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Fairhope, Brewton, Atmore, Jay Phone (251) 928-6768

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Monday, 11 November 2019 00:00

Effective Stretches For Foot Muscles

People who enjoy running are generally aware of the importance of having strong and stable feet. This can be accomplished by frequently performing stretching techniques that are designed to keep the feet flexible and strong. The feet are comprised of different types of muscles. Shorter muscles are known as intrinsic muscles, and are found inside the foot. They are responsible for moving the feet, and providing stability. A simple and effective movement known as toe curling can help to improve overall foot function. Additionally, the toes may become stronger when an effort is made to keep the big toe on the floor while lifting the other toes. Research has indicated the ankle will benefit when heel lifts are performed. If you would like more information about the importance of stretching the feet, or suggestions on specific foot stretches, please consult with a podiatrist.

Why Stretching is Important for Your Feet

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 Southeast Podiatry. 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 to determine 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 exercise, 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 to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 04 November 2019 00:00

Is There a Cure for Gout?

When a gout attack occurs, severe pain and discomfort often accompany this condition. It is considered to be a form of arthritis, and can occur as a result of genetic factors or from the foods that are eaten. Specific types of foods have elevated levels of purines. This may cause crystals to lodge in the joints of the big toe, and will typically cause redness and swelling. These foods can include shellfish, red meat, and drinks that are laden with sugar. There may be medications that can be taken to relieve some of the symptoms, despite the fact that there is no cure for gout. There are methods that can be implemented, which can possibly prevent painful gout attacks from occurring. These can consist of engaging in a frequent exercise program, and maintaining healthy eating habits, including drinking plenty of water daily. If you have developed gout, it is strongly suggested that you speak to a podiatrist as quickly as possible to obtain relief. 

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Gout

Many people have a strong desire to run in a marathon. Research has indicated the importance of warming up properly as the training regime begins, and this may be helpful in preventing running injuries. An injury to the plantar fascia typically starts by noticing pain in the heel. It is recommended that the calves and arches are properly stretched before beginning the physical training that is necessary to run a marathon. This can help to keep the muscles and tendons flexible. Ankle injuries may be avoided by performing heel drops, which can help to build strength in the ankles. Additionally, it is helpful to wear running shoes that are made of a lightweight material, and have adequate cushioning. If you enjoy the sport of running, and would like additional information about how the feet may be affected by running injuries, please consult with a podiatrist.

All runners should take extra precaution when trying to avoid injury. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists of Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

There are a lot of mistakes a runner can make prior to a workout that can induce injury. A lot of athletes tend to overstretch before running, instead of saving those workouts for a post-run routine. Deep lunges and hand-to-toe hamstring pulls should be performed after a workout instead of during a warmup. Another common mistake is jumping into an intense routine before your body is physically prepared for it. You should try to ease your way into long-distance running instead of forcing yourself to rush into it.

More Tips for Preventing Injury

  • Incorporate Strength Training into Workouts - This will help improve the body’s overall athleticism
  • Improve and Maintain Your Flexibility – Stretching everyday will help improve overall performance
  • “Warm Up” Before Running and “Cool Down” Afterward – A warm up of 5-10 minutes helps get rid of lactic acid in the muscles and prevents delayed muscle soreness
  • Cross-Training is Crucial
  • Wear Proper Running Shoes
  • Have a Formal Gait Analysis – Poor biomechanics can easily cause injury

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Preventing Running Injuries
Monday, 21 October 2019 00:00

Possible Loss of Cushioning in Elderly Feet

Research has shown the aging process may cause toenails to gradually become brittle, and the feet may lose cushioning. Additionally, seniors may experience circulation issues, which may cause existing wounds to heal slower. It is beneficial to walk frequently throughout the day and perform gentle stretching exercises that can help to improve circulation. It’s important for elderly people to wear shoes that fit correctly, assuring there is ample room for the toes to move freely in. This may be helpful in preventing painful foot conditions from developing, including bunions, hammertoes, and ingrown toenails. The feet will generally feel better when a moisturizer is applied daily, and appropriate shoes are worn in warm and moist environments. These practices may be helpful in preventing cracked heels and athlete’s foot. If you would like additional information about how to care for elderly feet, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

The Elderly and Their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions 

  • Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet and can hide many life-threatening medical conditions.
  • Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
  • Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
  • Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
  • Shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Pressure sores
  • Loss of circulation in legs & feet
  • Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Taking Care of Elderly Feet

When parents give their children daily baths, it is suggested that special attention be given to their feet. It is important to wash and dry thoroughly between the toes, and it may feel good to sprinkle a small amount of powder on the toes. Many parents underestimate the importance of wearing socks that fit correctly. When the right socks are worn, the feet will generally have ample room to grow. This is followed by choosing the correct size shoes, and this can be determined by having the feet properly measured. When children are indoors, the feet can become stronger while walking barefoot. When walking begins and the first shoes are purchased, it is beneficial to choose shoes that are made of breathable materials, in addition to having adequate room for the toes to move freely in. When the toenails are trimmed, ingrown toenails may be avoided when the nails are trimmed straight across the toe. If you would like additional information about the correct foot care for children, please consult with a podiatrist.

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact one of our podiatrists of Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Care for Your Child's Feet
Monday, 07 October 2019 00:00

Helpful Tips On Elderly Foot Care

Research has shown the importance for elderly people to properly take care of their feet. It may be difficult for seniors to bend down to trim their toenails, and they may benefit from having a caregiver or a relative help them accomplish this. If the patient is diabetic, any cuts, scrapes, or wounds on the feet need to be treated as quickly as possible. This can be helpful in preventing any infections from developing. Additionally, wearing socks that fit properly may be helpful controlling existing circulation conditions. The feet may change size as the aging process occurs, and it is suggested that the  feet get measured regularly. This will help in determining the correct shoe size that will be comfortable to wear. Elderly patients may find it feels good to frequently stretch their feet, and this may benefit the overall health of the feet. If you would like additional information about how to help geriatric patients properly care for their feet, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.

If you need your feet checked, contact one of our podiatrists of Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs and provide you with quality treatment.

Geriatrics and Podiatry
When people age, some common issues that may occur are bone density loss, dry skin, poor circulation, and rough brittle nails. These issues may also affect your foot health if the necessary steps are not taken to alleviate the problems.

It is important to take care of your feet because feet that are injured or diseased can affect your overall health. Having painful feet hinders your ability to do daily activities or may decrease your willingness to do the things that you need to do.

Visiting Your Geriatrician
As we age, health problems become more likely, so it is essential to visit your doctor for check-ups to ensure that you are doing the best you can to take care of your health. It is recommended to check your feet frequently for any possible cuts, bruises, swelling, corns or any other irregularities. 

Taking Care of Elderly Feet
Cracked or dry feet can be treated by applying moisturizer often. It is also important not to wear old socks because the older the sock is, the higher the possibility there will be that there is bacteria there. Wear fresh socks and make sure they fit properly.

Proper foot health means that you can have a more active lifestyle and you will not be bogged down by pain. Foot health also leads to good circulation, which is paramount for overall health.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Geriatrics and Podiatry
Monday, 30 September 2019 00:00

Are High Heels Good for Your Feet?

If you frequently wear high heels, you may be prone to having sore and aching feet. This may be a result of the unnatural position the feet are in while wearing these types of shoes. There may be specific foot conditions that can develop from wearing high heels. These can include ingrown toenails and hammertoes, which can happen if there is a limited amount of room for the toes to move freely in. Additionally, it may be easier to fall, which may cause an ankle injury. If you choose to wear high heels, it may be beneficial to alternate days by wearing shoes with a lower heel. Research has indicated it may be beneficial to perform gentle stretches, which may help to strengthen the calves and to keep the feet strong. If you would like additional information about the possible dangers high heels can have on the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Effect of High Heels on the Feet

First baseman Ryan Zimmerman of the Washington Nationals has suffered a “brutal” season due to plantar fasciitis in his right foot. The condition made Zimmerman’s returns to the field slow. The nature of the athlete’s injury has also made it slow to heal; fully torn plantar fascia are faster to heal, but Zimmerman’s fascia was only partly torn. Before his return on September 1st, Zimmerman rehabilitated on the treadmill. Plantar fasciitis is a common sports injury that can be disruptive to everyday life. If you think you’ve sustained a plantar fasciitis injury, contact your podiatrist. 
 

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis

Patients who are overweight may notice they frequently experience foot pain. This can be a result of the added weight the feet must endure on a daily basis. Additionally, there are uncomfortable foot conditions that may develop which can include plantar fasciitis, arthritis, and tendinitis. These can compromise the ability to complete daily activities. Obese patients may have flat feet, and this may produce considerable pain and discomfort. Other medical conditions that can develop from being overweight are gout, diabetes, and circulation ailments. If you have questions about how obesity can affect the feet, it is strongly advised that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist.

The more you weigh, the harder your feet must work to support your body. If you’re an obese individual and are concerned about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Obesity and Your Feet

People who are overweight are putting more pressure on their ankles, knees, and hips as well as their feet. This unfortunately can lead to variety of different issues.

Problems & Complications Stemming from Obesity

  • When the body is overweight, it tries to compensate by changing the way that it moves. An obese person may lean forward and put extra weight on the wrong part of the foot. This puts unnecessary stress on the feet.
  • Obese people are also more likely to develop type II diabetes which is a condition that causes a lot of foot problems. People with diabetes often don’t feel the cuts and sores that they may have on their feet, which can lead to more complicated and severe issues.
  • Plantar fasciitis is another foot condition that can be caused by obesity. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue along the bottom of the foot, which causes pain and stiffness while walking and climbing stairs.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Obesity and the Feet
Monday, 09 September 2019 00:00

How Important Is Proper Foot Care In Children?

Research has indicated when children's feet receive proper care, potential foot problems that can develop as adults may diminish. When children get into the habit of washing and drying their feet on a daily basis, foot conditions, including athlete’s foot, may be prevented. Children’s feet will benefit from walking barefoot while indoors. This helps the toes to become strong by grasping the floor. When it is time to walk outdoors, it is important to have your child’s feet properly measured. This can help to determine the correct size shoe to ensure comfortable walking. The unpleasant foot condition, known as ingrown toenails, may be prevented when the toenails are trimmed straight across the toe. Please consult with a podiatrist if you would like additional information about foot care for children.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact one of our podiatrists of Southeast Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Fairhope, Brewton, and Atmore, AL and Jay, FL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
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