Tuesday, 17 May 2022 00:00

Sever’s disease, also known as calcaneal apophysitis, is a condition that impacts heels on the feet of young people. It is often a result of inflammation to the growth plate in the heel arising from natural and sometimes uneven growth spurts in bones during puberty. The muscles and tendons, especially the Achilles tendon, can become tight and pull on the heel bone causing pain and swelling. It generally develops between the ages of eight and thirteen in girls and ten to fifteen in boys and is often transitory as the growth plate usually matures and hardens by age fifteen. This condition can occur in any child but those with flat feet, high arches, short leg syndrome, or childhood obesity are more at risk. A child in the affected age group who plays sports, like soccer, and runs or jumps a lot can complain about heel pain and this can be the culprit. Rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE), as well as stretching the Achilles tendon and calf will help with pain. See a chiropodist if your child develops heel or foot pain to properly diagnose the problem and create a treatment plan to best deal with symptoms and help your child return to normal functioning.

Sever’s disease typically affects young children and teenagers. If your child complains of foot pain, please consult with Chiropodist Stephanie Poupore from North Bay Foot & Ankle. Our clinician will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

What Is Sever’s Disease? 

Sever’s disease, also known as calcaneal apophysitis, is an inflammation of the growth plate in the heel bone. It is typically caused by overuse due to repetitive activities such as running, jumping, and playing certain sports. This condition most frequently affects children between the ages of 8 and 14. 

Symptoms

Symptoms of Sever’s disease include: 

  • Pain in the back or bottom of the heel

  • Pain when the sides of the heel are squeezed

  • Limping or walking on tiptoes to avoid putting pressure on the heel

  • Difficulty running, jumping, or participating in usual activities

  • Fatigue 

Diagnosis

Sever’s disease is diagnosed by taking a thorough medical history and performing a physical examination. Imaging studies, such as an X-ray, can help rule out other injuries like a fracture. 

Treatment

Sever’s disease typically heals without any long-term complications. Treatment involves resting the affected foot by reducing typical activities, wearing orthotics to support the foot, immobilizing the affected foot, taking medications to reduce pain and inflammation, and stretching the foot. 

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

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Tuesday, 10 May 2022 00:00

Foot cramps can be a common problem. They may happen as a result of wearing shoes that are too tight while doing cardiovascular exercise. Research has shown that foot cramps may be diminished when frequent foot exercises are performed. Effective foot stretches can include placing your toes on the edge of a towel while sitting down, and pulling the towel under the toes by flexing the foot. Additionally, many people perform what is known as the marble/pencil grab. This is done by picking up marbles or pencils with your foot, while either in a sitting or standing position. A stretch that can strengthen the bottom of the foot is done by standing on a step while lowering one heel at a time until a gentle stretch is felt. If you are experiencing foot cramps, and would like more information on how to strengthen the feet, please confer with a chiropodist.

Stretching and strengthening your feet is very important for maintaining your foot health. If you would like to learn more about exercises for your feet, please consult with Chiropodist Stephanie Poupore from North Bay Foot & Ankle. Our clinician can help you maintain the health of your lower limbs and your mobility. 

There are a variety of relatively easy-to-do exercises that can boost the strength, flexibility, and mobility of your feet, as well as relieve foot pain.  

Strength exercises: 

  • Toe splay - Spread the toes apart and hold for several seconds; improves control over toe muscles

  • Toe curls - Scrunch up a towel with your toes; strengthens the flexor muscles

  • Marble pickup - Pick up marbles with your toes; strengthens the muscles on the undersides of the feet and toes

  • Walking on sand - Stretches and strengthens feet and calves

Flexibility exercises: 

  • Heel raises - Raise the heels while keeping toes on the ground

  • Toe point - Raise the heels while pointing the toes, keeping just the tips of toes on the ground

  • Toe curl - Raise the heels while curling the toes inwards, keeping just the tips of toes on the ground

  • Big toe stretch - Use your hands to gently stretch your big toes up, down, and to the side

Exercises for foot pain: 

  • Toe extension - Gently pull the toes up towards the ankle and hold for several seconds

  • Ball roll - gently roll a golf or tennis ball underneath the arches of the feet 

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

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Tuesday, 03 May 2022 00:00

Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that targets your joints, and commonly affects the big toe. The most common symptoms of gout are burning, itching or tingling in the joint, followed by painful swelling and redness. Men are more apt to experience gout, but women are more at risk after menopause. Being overweight and eating foods that are high in purines are major contributors to this painful condition. Purines are more abundant in seafood, red meat (especially organ meat), fried and processed foods, and sugar. A byproduct of purines is uric acid, which sometimes forms into crystals that stay in the joints and cause pain. Gout can flare up and recede, so constant awareness of diet and weight is essential in reducing flare ups. It is wise to drink plenty of water, eat more fruits (especially those high in vitamin C) vegetables, and low-fat dairy products, as these foods are lower in purines. If you think you may be having a gout attack, it is suggested that you seek the help of a chiropodist at your earliest opportunity. 

Gout is a painful form of arthritis that can affect anyone. Please consult with Chiropodist Stephanie Poupore from North Bay Foot & Ankle. Our clinician will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

What Is Gout?

Gout is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. This type of arthritis is caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. When uric acid crystallizes in a joint, often the joint of the big toe, it can bring about a gout attack. 

Symptoms

Symptoms of gout include: 

  • Sudden and severe pain

  • Swelling

  • Redness

  • Warmth 

  • Joint stiffness

  • Joint deformity

Diagnosis

A chiropodist will ask questions about your personal and family medical history, followed by an examination of the affected joint. Laboratory tests and x-rays are sometimes ordered to determine if the inflammation is caused by something other than gout. A sample of fluid taken from your joint can show whether it contains uric acid. 

Treatment

Prescription medications or injections are used to treat the pain, swelling, and inflammation. Patients with chronic gout can also use behavioral modifications such as diet, exercise, and decreased intake of alcohol to help minimize the frequency of gout attacks. Foods and beverages that are high in purines should be avoided since purines are converted in the body to uric acid. If left untreated, this painful condition can leave your joint permanently damaged and swollen.  

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

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Tuesday, 26 April 2022 00:00

Cracked heels develop when skin on the heels is first allowed to become dry. It can then thicken and harden. This callused skin is more prone to cracking when the weight of the body bears down on the skin, causing it to break. It is important to keep the skin on your feet hydrated and healthy. Avoid wearing open-backed shoes that expose your heels to the elements. Staying in the water for too long can actually dry your skin out, so limit showers and baths to 5-10 minutes. Use gentle cleansers that don’t strip your skin from natural oils. Lock in moisture right after bathing by applying foot cream with alpha hydroxy acid or salicylic acid. Moisturizing your feet at night and covering them with socks while you sleep can also help heal cracked heels. However, those who are elderly or have diabetes should not try to treat cracked heels at home. These individuals, as well as those whose cracked heels have not improved with home treatment, should seek the professional care of a chiropodist.


 

Cracked heels, also known as heel fissures, can cause pain and discomfort. If your cracked heels are bothering you, please consult with Chiropodist Stephanie Poupore from North Bay Foot & Ankle. Our clinician will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

Dry, thickened skin around the rim of the heel is typically the first sign of cracked heels. While this condition is common and usually just a nuisance, some cases can be more severe. If left untreated and as more pressure is placed on the heel, the cracks become deeper and eventually walking and standing can be painful. These deep cracks or fissures can bleed and also become infected. Those with diabetes need to be especially careful as fissures could lead to diabetic foot ulcers. 

Causes

Cracked heels can be the result of several different factors, including: 

  • Dry skin

  • Taking long, hot showers or using harsh soaps

  • Standing for long periods of time

  • Walking barefoot

  • Walking in shoes with an open back, such as sandals or flip flops

  • Wearing shoes that do not fit properly

  • Living in a cold or dry climate 

  • Certain skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis

Treatment

There are many at-home treatment remedies for cracked heels. Applying moisturizers to the heel can help hydrate the skin. Soaking your feet in warm water and exfoliating them with a loofah or pumice stone can help to buff away dead skin cells. If you are afflicted with cracked heels, it is recommended that you see a chiropodist for treatment. 

Prevention

You can prevent cracked heels by:

  • Avoiding standing in one position for prolonged periods of time

  • Wearing well-fitted shoes with a closed back

  • Washing your feet with gentle soaps and lukewarm water

  • Moisturizing the feet daily

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

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