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Monday, 26 November 2018 00:00

High Heels and the Achilles Tendon

Many women enjoy wearing high heels despite having the knowledge that the feet may be negatively affected. Research has shown the Achilles tendon may become shorter and stiffness may occur as a possible result of frequently wearing high heels. Additionally, balance and posture may become affected as the center of gravity changes, and the muscles surrounding the ankle may be compromised. There may be solutions that can be implemented to protect the feet from wearing high heels, and these may include choosing to wear shoes that have a lower heel, reducing the amount of days and time spent wearing high heels, or wearing soft insoles, which may provide adequate cushioning for the feet. If you would like additional information about the effects high heels can have on your feet, please speak with a podiatrist who will be able to suggest proper foot strengthening exercises.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Don A. Shumway, DPM from Arizona. Our doctor 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 Snowflake, AZ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Why High Heels Are Not Ideal for Healthy Feet
Monday, 19 November 2018 00:00

Plantar Warts Cause Pain in the Heel

The medical name for a condition that is commonly known as plantar warts is called verrucae warts. It is a result of the human papillomavirus (HPV) that typically enters the foot through small cracks in the heel and will affect the skin on the bottom of the feet. If you are afflicted with this painful foot condition, you may experience symptoms that include pain while walking as a result of pressure the heel must endure, and a yellow and hardened area on the skin, possibly with small black spots in the center. This virus lives in areas that are consistently moist and humid, which may include swimming pools and the surrounding areas or locker rooms. There are several different treatment options that can be implemented, which may provide the desired relief, and it is suggested to speak with a podiatrist to discuss which is the best one for you.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Don A. Shumway, DPM from Arizona. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

Read more about Plantar Warts

Living with foot pain is hard on your body.  Give us a call and let us find out what's wrong.

If you are standing or walking for the majority of the day as a result of your working activities, you may be familiar with the pain and discomfort your feet may experience. Specific foot conditions may amplify and become worse by standing on your feet for most of the day, including pain that may originate from corns, calluses, or certain foot deformities. There may be several options that can be enforced to alleviate a portion of the discomfort, which may include executing changes in the working environment, wearing different types of shoes or using shoe inserts, and standing on suitable floor mats instead of hard floors. Research has shown that moderate relief may be attained by performing simple foot stretches throughout the day. It may also help to elevate the feet when the work day is over, and this may aid in reducing any swelling that may be present. If you would like additional advice on how your feet may feel better while working, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist who will be able to provide the correct information.

While working on the feet, it is important to take the proper care of them. For more information about working on your feet, contact Don A. Shumway, DPM from Arizona. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Working on Your Feet

Standing on your feet for long periods of time can cause stress and pain in your feet. Your whole body may experience change in terms of posture, back pain, bunions, callouses and or plantar warts. There are ways to avoid these conditions with proper foot care, smart choices and correct posture.

Positive Changes

Negative heeled shoe – Choosing this shoe type places the heel slightly lower than the ball of the foot. These are great for overall foot health. Find shoes that fit you correctly.

Go barefoot – Our feet were not designed to be enclosed for all hours of the day. Try to periodically expose your feet to air.

Eliminate Pain

Foot Exercises – Performing simple exercises, incorporating yoga and doing stretches are beneficial. This will allow increased blood flow to the area and muscles of the foot.

Achilles tendon – Stretching the foot out flat on the floor will relax the calf muscles and tendon. These exercises can be performed almost anywhere. Make sure you add these exercises to your daily regimen. 

With a little bit of this information and knowing more about foot health, you will notice changes. Foot stretches and proper footwear will help with pain and prevent further issues.

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

Read more about Working on Your Feet
Monday, 05 November 2018 00:00

Symptoms Of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

The medical condition that is referred to as tarsal tunnel syndrome typically affects the ligaments that stretch across the foot. These are known to provide flexibility and stability to the foot, and may become irritated and inflamed if they are compressed. This may occur as a result from an injury or trauma the foot endures, possibly due to performing repetitive motions. There are several symptoms that are associated with this condition. Many patients will notice a burning or tingling sensation in their foot and may also be accompanied by a shooting pain in the ankle. If you have injured your foot or have pain in the ankle that develops gradually, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist so a proper diagnosis can be performed, and the correct treatment can begin.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Don A. Shumway, DPM of Arizona. Our doctor 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 our office located in Snowflake, AZ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
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