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August 2022

Gait Changes Caused By High Heels

Many women wear high heels as a fashion statement and to increase their height. While these are certainly two important benefits of wearing high heels, there are also many risks. One potential risk of wearing high-heeled shoes is that it might detrimentally alter one’s gait, or walking pattern. For example, women who wear high heels sometimes exhibit shorter gait patterns and unconsciously point their toes. As a result, the gaits of these women exert more pressure on the calf muscles and can ultimately facilitate strain on the feet. Some women who wear high heels might even demonstrate these gait changes when they are not wearing high heels, such as when they are walking barefoot or in a pair of flats. Of course, sometimes wearing high heels can be an unavoidable choice. However, there are several things one might do to mitigate the extent to which high heels can change the gait. Namely, someone might limit the time that high heels are worn throughout the day and set a limit on the number of days in the week in which these shoes are worn. Contact a podiatrist for more information about how high heels can alter your gait.


 

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 Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical Center . 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 our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Do You Have Ugly Toenails?

If you have ugly toenails, the cause might be toenail fungus. Many adults have it, particularly as one ages. This unsightly condition is especially common among those who go barefoot in public swimming areas, locker rooms, and who sweat inside their shoes for many hours in a day. The medical term for toenail fungus is onychomycosis. It is a condition that generally starts out as a white or yellow spot under the nail. While it is easy to ignore in the beginning stages, the toenail later begins to thicken, discolor, and crumble. The longer you wait to treat this, the longer it takes to get rid of it. The fungus that causes toenails to be affected is the same type of fungus that causes athlete’s foot. The two can happen concurrently if the fungus affects the skin around the infected nail. The toenail also may become painful and emit a foul odor. Those with diabetes or a suppressed immune system need to be especially cautious of toenail fungus because it can affect the blood circulation to the feet. If you suspect that you have toenail fungus, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist as soon as possible so that the condition can be treated before it spreads or becomes entrenched to the point of taking years to heal.

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact one of our podiatrists of Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical Center . Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Exercises That Can Help to Strengthen the Feet

The easiest way to strengthen the feet is by exercising. There are specific foot stretches and exercises that can enhance the overall foot when frequently practiced. The feet are the foundation of the body and are often forgotten about during strength training routines. There are two categories of muscles that are found in each foot. The muscles that are responsible for maintaining the arch and aid in shock absorption are referred to as the intrinsic foot muscles. The ankle is moved, and the toes are flexed and pointed by engaging the global lower limb muscles. The toes can be strengthened by performing toe curls which are done by stepping on a towel and picking it up with the toes. The arch can become stronger by sitting in a chair while trying to shorten the foot by bringing the ball of the foot toward the heel. If you would like additional information about the benefits of exercising your feet, please confer with a podiatrist.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries and build strength. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical Center . Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Exercise for Your Feet

Exercise for your feet can help you gain strength, mobility and flexibility in your feet. They say that strengthening your feet can be just as rewarding as strengthening another part of the body. Your feet are very important, and we often forget about them in our daily tasks. But it is because of our feet that are we able to get going and do what we need to. For those of us fortunate enough to not have any foot problems, it is an important gesture to take care of them to ensure good health in the long run.

Some foot health exercises can include ankle pumps, tip-toeing, toe rises, lifting off the floor doing reps and sets, and flexing the toes. It is best to speak with Our doctors to determine an appropriate regimen for your needs. Everyone’s needs and bodies are different, and the activities required to maintain strength in the feet vary from individual to individual. 

Once you get into a routine of doing regular exercise, you may notice a difference in your feet and how strong they may become.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Effective Fall Prevention Methods

Research has indicated that approximately one in three Americans who are 65 or older will fall, which is a leading cause of hospitalization for adults in New York City. Many people develop a fear of falling, and this can be detrimental to completing daily chores and experiencing new activities. When people fall, their feet are often negatively affected. Ankles or toes may be broken, and this can cause severe pain and discomfort. There are simple prevention techniques that can be implemented to help prevent painful falling episodes. These can include incorporating gentle exercise and stretching routines into the daily regime, clearing clutter in the household, and improving lighting in the living area. Additionally, it is beneficial to have regular physical examinations performed, as this is helpful in monitoring existing medications. Glasses can be updated when the eyes are checked, and it is beneficial to have this done annually. Wearing shoes that fit correctly can be helpful in possibly preventing falls, and maintaining proper foot care is essential in having the feet feel good. Some people find it useful to have grab bars installed in the bath and toilet area, in addition to using a bathmat. If you would like to know about how to protect the feet and how to reduce the number of falls, please ask a podiatrist who can answer any questions you may have.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with one of our podiatrists from Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical Center . Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Stretching for Runners

One of the most critical, yet often overlooked, ways to improve and maintain good foot health is to regularly perform stretches and exercises for the feet. These stretches are important for several reasons. Most importantly, regularly and intentionally stretching the feet is an excellent way to improve the strength of the muscles in the feet. When the muscles in the feet are stronger, this can make the foot more stable and agile. This benefit of increased stability and agility can be especially important for runners who can benefit from this the most. For example, when someone runs, they can put up to two to three times their natural body weight onto one foot at a time. Therefore, strengthened foot muscles from stretching can help runners go faster and further. Additionally, stretching can help your feet by making suffering an injury less likely. When your feet are stronger and the muscles are more fortified, rolling your feet inward becomes less likely. Stronger feet are also more protected against conditions such as plantar fasciitis, neuromas, and stress fractures. Again, runners stand to benefit because suffering from an injury or foot affliction can make continuing to run difficult. If you are a runner or simply want to improve the strength of your feet, consider consulting a podiatrist who can teach you helpful stretches for the 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 Advanced Foot & Ankle Medical 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 our office located in Thousand Oaks, CA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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