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Monday, 27 August 2018 00:00

What Are Stress Fractures Caused By?

If bones in the feet are generally overused, stress fractures may develop as a result of this type of strain. The foot bones typically absorb the weight of the body and tiny fractures may occur with specific types of repetitive motion. These may include any kind of jumping, running, or power walking activities performed over an extended period of time. Some of the symptoms that may be associated with this condition may be severe pain and swelling, and can often be diagnosed by having an X-ray performed. Additional reasons for this condition to develop may be obesity, muscle weakness, or possible side effects that may weaken the bones from certain medications. If you feel you may have developed a stress fracture in any part of your foot, it’s advised to speak to a podiatrist as quickly as possible to determine what the best treatment options are for you.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

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

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Monday, 20 August 2018 00:00

What Does Hammertoe Look Like?

A deformity of the toes that resemble a claw-like shape may be referred to as hammertoe. If the toes do not have adequate room to move about, they may have to bend to fit into the shoe. Additionally, if tight socks are worn, the toes may have to squeeze together, which may cause them to overlap. This condition can produce discomfort and pain, and may possibly cause corns and calluses to develop. Preventive measures may include choosing to wear shoes that fit correctly, while making sure there is ample room in the top of the shoe. Patients who have high arches or bunions may be more susceptible in developing hammertoe, and research has shown that permanent removal of a hammertoe affliction means surgery. It’s suggested to schedule a consultation with a podiatrist who can recommend temporary relief options, which may include custom-made protective pads over the affected area.

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments that normally hold the toe straight. It can be caused by the type of shoes you wear, your foot structure, trauma, and certain disease processes.

Symptoms

  • Painful and/or difficult toe movement
  • Swelling
  • Joint stiffness
  • Calluses/Corns
  • Physical deformity

Risk Factors

  • Age – The risk of hammertoe increases with age
  • Sex – Women are more likely to have hammertoe compared to men
  • Toe Length – You are more likely to develop hammertoe if your second toe is longer than your big toe
  • Certain Diseases – Arthritis and diabetes may make you more likely to develop hammertoe

Treatment

If you have hammertoe, you should change into a more comfortable shoe that provides enough room for your toes. Exercises such as picking up marbles may strengthen and stretch your toe muscles. Nevertheless, it is important to seek assistance from a podiatrist in order to determine the severity of your hammertoe and see which treatment option will work best for you.

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

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Tuesday, 14 August 2018 00:00

Effective Ways to Prevent Falling

Recent research has shown that approximately 30 to 40 percent of seniors fall at least once per year. Many injuries may occur from the unnatural act of falling, including breaking a foot or spraining an ankle, in addition to possibly affecting the overall health of the body. There are simple steps that may be implemented to avoid falling, and as a result, the chances of a serious fall from occurring may be diminished. It’s important to choose shoes that fit correctly and it is beneficial if they have a non-slip sole. For those seniors who exercise regularly, their strong muscles and tendons may aid in providing the necessary strength to prevent a fall from occurring. Additionally, living in a clean and uncluttered environment may help older people to walk without tripping. It may be helpful to obtain regular medical checkups, which may include an eye exam and a reevaluation of any medications that are taken.

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 Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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We all know the importance of buying shoes that fit properly. When shoes fit correctly, the feet will not only feel better, but may improve the overall well being of the body. Research has shown that it’s beneficial to purchase shoes during the day when the feet are typically at their largest. After having a salesperson properly measure your feet, the shoes should be tried on and walked in to ensure an optimum and comfortable fit. Being aware of how your feet feel in the shoes and trusting your comfort level, will aid in determining the shoe size that is correct for you. When standing in the shoes, a half-inch of space is generally ideal between the end of the shoes and the longest toe. If you find that any particular pair of shoes needs to be “broken in,” that may typically be a sign of an improper fit. Please consult with a podiatrist for additional information about how to properly fit for shoes.

It is important to find shoes that fit you properly in order to avoid a variety of different foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

Shoes have many different functions. They cushion our body weight, protect our feet, and allow us to safely play sports. You should always make sure that the shoes you wear fit you properly in order to avoid injuries and deformities such as: bunions, corns, calluses, hammertoes, plantar fasciitis, stress fractures, and more. It is important to note that although a certain pair of shoes might be a great fit for someone else, that doesn’t mean they will be a great fit for you. This is why you should always try on shoes before buying them to make sure they are worth the investment. Typically, shoes need to be replaced ever six months to one year of regular use.

Tips for Proper Shoe Fitting

  • Select a shoe that is shaped like your foot
  • Don’t buy shoes that fit too tight, expecting them to stretch to fit
  • Make sure there is enough space (3/8” to ½”) for your longest toe at the end of each shoe when you are standing up
  • Walk in the shoes to make sure they fit and feel right
  • Don’t select shoes by the size marked inside the shoe, but by how the shoe fits your foot

The shoes you buy should always feel as good as they look. Shoes that fit properly will last longer, feel better, and improve your way of life each day.

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

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