Posts for: July, 2017
The feet of children grow and change rapidly during their first year, reaching almost half their adult foot size. Most changes in children’s feet are a natural part of development, but others require attention and treatment from a professional. That’s why it’s important for parents to pay close attention to their child’s feet to ensure proper growth during every stage of development. A podiatrist provides expert care, diagnosis and treatment of ankle and foot disorders in children.
Here are some tips to help parents guide normal development for their child’s feet:
- For babies, avoid covering the feet too tightly, as this restricts movement and can delay normal development.
- If your child participates in sports, choose sport-specific shoes that fit his or her feet properly
- Observe walking patterns. Does the child toe in or out; have bowlegs or knock-knees; limp or experience other gait abnormalities? These problems can be corrected if they are detected early.
- A child’s feet change rapidly, so check your child's shoe size often. Shoes should be supportive, well-cushioned and roomy.
- When applying sunscreen, remember to apply to the feet.
- Kids love the freedom of being shoeless, but walking barefoot may increase a child’s risk of infection, sprains or fractures.
Remember, your child doesn’t necessarily have to show signs of foot pain or discomfort for something to be abnormal. A child’s feet are very pliable and can be deformed without the child recognizing the warning signs. Carefully monitor your child’s feet. If you notice unusual symptoms, seek professional care immediately. Deformities will not be outgrown by themselves.
Your child will depend on his or her feet for the rest of their life to get them where they need to go. Whenever you have questions about your child's foot health, contact your trusted podiatrist. Any pain that lasts more than a few days, or that is severe enough to limit the child’s walking, should be evaluated by a professional.
Foot problems can crop up anytime and often when we least expect it. Don’t let a foot problem throw you off guard. Our Williamsburg, VA, podiatrists Dr. Sara Bouraee and Dr. Mahmoud Salem are here to offer up some insight into some rather common foot problems and how you may want to handle them if they ever happen to you.
Since fungus is all around it it’s fairly common for most people to face a fungal foot infection at some point during their lifetime. While some infections may spread to the toenails, athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that affects the skin of the feet. You may notice that the skin, particularly between the toes, is red, scaly, itchy, peeling or burning. These symptoms can be intense at times and can continue to spread throughout the foot.
How to treat it: While symptoms are pretty annoying, this condition is not really a cause for concern if you are an otherwise healthy individual. In fact, athlete’s foot can often be treated with an over-the-counter antifungal cream that you can get from your local pharmacist. If you have diabetes, if your symptoms are severe or if symptoms persist even after treating the problem with at-home medications, then it’s time to visit our Williamsburg, VA, foot doctors.
A bunion is a deformity of the joint that’s situated at the base of the big toe and it causes the bone to jut out. As a result, it can make wearing shoes or walking around more painful. A bunion is a progressive condition but there are certain measures you can take early on to prevent it from getting worse. While a bunion will only go away if you have surgery to repair it, most people can manage their symptoms without ever needing to resort to surgery.
How to treat it: If you have a bunion, make sure that you are wearing shoes that give your toes a lot of room to wiggle and move around. Shoes should never put additional pressure on the bunion. You can also wear a protective moleskin pad over the bunion before putting on shoes to offer more protection.
While there are many problems that can lead to heel pain, the most common cause is an inflammatory condition known as plantar fasciitis. This is when the band of tissue running along the soles of the feet becomes inflamed. This is typically the result of overuse or strain.
How to treat it: Heel pain will often go away on its own as long as you avoid certain high-impact activities that could irritate the inflamed tissue more. Splinting the foot can also provide some stabilization and support for the heel and the arches to reduce pain and discomfort. If heel pain is severe or doesn’t respond to at-home treatment then we may recommend corticosteroid injections, shockwave therapy or even surgery to treat the problem.
Hampton Roads Foot and Ankle Specialists in Williamsburg, VA, is dedicated to providing you with the ultimate in foot care. Whether you want to discuss your bunion treatment options or you want to figure out how to get rid of your heel pain, we are always here to help.
Whether you’re training for your very first marathon or preparing for your 10th, it’s important to begin your training program on the right foot. A lack of experience coupled with the repetitive impact placed on the feet and ankles during a long run can produce enough stress to cause hairline fractures and other debilitating foot injuries.
Many foot problems seen in marathoners are caused by the repetitive pounding over the months of long-distance running. With some people, injury is triggered by the abnormal foot biomechanics, and in others it is because of poor training. During a 10-mile run, the feet make about 15,000 strikes, at a force of three to four times the body's weight. Even if you have perfect foot mechanics, injuries and pain are often unavoidable with this amount of stress.
To prevent injury during training, it’s important to pay close attention to your feet. When increasing mileage, avoid doing so too quickly. The increased forced can make your feet more susceptible to stress fractures.
Basic tips for training include:
- Follow a training schedule that is appropriate for your experience level
- Start easy and increase your mileage slowly
- Stretch and warm up properly to reduce strain on muscles, tendons and joints
- Choose appropriate footwear based on your foot structure, function, body type, running environment and training regimen
- Never ignore pain. If the pain gets worse with reduced exercise and rest, stop training and visit your podiatrist
Aside from stress fractures which often occur from overtraining, additional foot problems you may experience include:
- Toenail problems, including ingrown and fungus
- Heel pain, such as plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendon and calf pain
- Toe pain, such as bunions
- Shin splints
Before you start training, our practice recommends visiting a podiatrist for a complete evaluation of your lower extremities. Our office will examine your feet and identify potential problems, discuss training tactics, prescribe an orthotic device that fits into a running shoe (if needed) and recommend the best style of footwear for your feet to allow for injury free training all the way up to your race day. It is especially important to come in for an exam if you have already started training and are experiencing foot or ankle pain.
Training for a marathon is hard work. It takes time and dedication. At our practice, we offer special interest and expertise working with marathoners to ensure good foot health throughout your entire training program to help you achieve your goals.