What Is Cold Feet?

Cold feet is a condition that develops due to poor circulation in feet and toes associated with increased sensitivity to cold. In low temperatures the small arteries supplying the feet narrow down, which decrees the flow of blood and oxygen to the blood vessels. The reduced circulation of blood in the veins and tightening of the blood vessels in the legs causes the sensations of cold feet. While poor blood circulation usually affects the extremities, it may also affect vital organs, which is extremely dangerous.

The common cause for cold legs and feet is poor circulation. Proper circulation of blood to the legs keeps our feet warm. However, when the feet does not receive sufficient blood to sustain themselves the feet become cold. While the condition is often temporary, sometimes it is a symptom of medical reasons. Lots of folks are not even aware they have these problems until it becomes an issue.

Cold feet occurs most commonly at very cold environmental temperatures, but many people complain of this symptom, even on warmer environments. This could be a sign of a serious medical problem.

What are the risk factors for poor circulation in feet?

Anybody can develop cold feet symptoms. People of all ages could be affected, but those with poor circulation in feet are more susceptible. The following are determining factors which can increase the chances of getting cold feet:

Lack of mobility: An inactive job or a desk job requiring sitting in one posture for more than an hour, like working with a computer or while traveling by train, car or plane could indirectly contribute to getting icy feet. Immobilization leads to poor blood supply and thence icy feet.

Sweating: Constantly sweating can also make feel cold, this can often be caused by an anxiety, stress or emotional events.

Diet: A diet with not enough fat can also lead to problems.

The effects of other diseases: Many diseases can cause cold legs and feet.

Occupational risk factors: People who work outdoors and those who engage in outdoor activities are more likely to develop cold feet due to reduced body temperature.

Cigarette smoking: Although smoking does not directly cause cold feet, it can be among the risk factors for developing this symptom. For example, smoking narrows and blocks your blood vessels, reducing blood and oxygen supply to the feet.

Poor feet circulation can strike at anytime. Be physically active if you can. The more you stimulate your body during your routine, the more your blood flow increases through the entire body, which helps to keep your feet warm. Being physically active is the most effective way of improving poor circulation in the feet. That's the key to having warm feet.

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The Effect Of Custom Foot Orthotics On Chronic Low Back Pain

The lower back pain treated best when we know the cause of the pain. The lower back pain can have many sources. Back pain caused by a minor muscle strain from a routine morning jog, a twisted pelvis due to poor foot biomechanics, or by an undetected spinal cancer; of course the pain intensity gaps with the cause which produces the pain.

One of the most common causes of low back problems which usually usually go undetected for a while is a poor foot and arch alignment due to lack of foot orthotics. This issue is very important because if the knee, legs and feet go unchecked, the origin of the lower back pain will be completely missed. Therefore, there is a great possibility that the prescribed treatment would not effective. The problem becomes persistent and later becomes chronic.

To understand the correlation between a poor foot posture and lower back pain, one should explore and analyze the anatomy of the lower body and their connection. The feet are the supporting pillar of the skeletal structure. They play a very important role in the body's stability, motility, balance, and functionality as we stand, walk or jog. It is not uncommon to adapt a poor body posture from foot problems. The arch of the foot acts as a shock absorber. and the structure of the foot is guidance for the weight-bearing skeletal joints, such as ankles, knees, hips, spine.

Pronation is an excessive inward rotation of foot and it is secondary to flat arches. When the foot over-pronated (rolls inwards), they often put the entire body out of balance. The foot arch that is flat forces the foot to rotate inwards, pronation. Excessive tilting of the foot misaligns the ankles, knees and hips and of course spine. This rotation creates a lot of imbalance, tension, and compression on the muscles, ligaments, tendons and the weight bearing joints. The best method to correct a pronounced foot is by foot orthotics.

The tension causes muscle strain and ligament sprain which then leads to soreness and pain. As this condition progresses and goes undetected, the individual starts to develop odd soreness and pain on lower back, or lower body such as knees, shins, or feet. The outcome would have increased spinal pressure and continuous tension on the muscles in the lower back, causing pain and discomfort in this important area of ​​the body.

This is where custom foot orthotics comes into play. Custom orthotics is therapeutics devices uses to correct over-pronated feet and flat arch for the most part. Foot orthotics has many advantages and they are able to correct many faulty foot postures. Orhotics correct the foot post by providing the necessary support to keep the arch of the foot at the proper height therefore keeping the lower body in the best possible form. Foot Orthotics comes in all shapes and sizes and anyone can benefit from them, male, female, old and children over age of three. There are many kinds of orthotics customized for specific activities or footwear. Custom orthotics manufacture by experienced craftsmanship and the use of high quality materials. Orhotics is low bulk and can fit in most footwear.

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Finding the Right Hiker’s Gear Shoes

To keep it simple, hiking is an ambitious activity! As the gear is required for a longer period of time full of hurdles and problems; from reaching the heights of danger, to bearing the scorching sun, sustaining the harsh mountains, rains and sandy winds which cramp the view to enjoying every moment of it with new discoveries being made every next second! Maintaining our balance at that particular moment is an important aspect indeed. Usually the required GEAR INCLUDES:

-footwear and head-gear,

-stretchable apparels,

-maps,

-compass,

-matches and lighters,

-your favorite portable items,

-safety equipments,

-food (containers),

-and water containers (of course filled with water).

Some additional items are also complimentary and mark my words as a professional myself: in times of need, even the most illegally devices seem like precious diamonds! Those are:

-extra dresses,

-and electrical equipments like cameras, laptops, etc.

When it comes to footwear, the importance reaches higher levels; as the hiker ties heavily on the shoes he / she wears because vehicles are the least thinkable on those Run-on-your-Leg Occasions. The hiking boots or hiking shoes come in different varieties. They can be the high-ankle types which keep most of the areas of your legs safe because of their full lengths. These variable types are also made to suit the different categories of hikers, from beginners to professionals; they support the proper feet and maintain the balance of the ankles. Ultimately protecting the hiker's feet from injuries and / or accidents due to the uneven spaces. The females have options as well, as they can get themselves rigid yet comfy sport-sandals giving demonstrative advantages from rugged bases to ease down the “rough and tough” surrounds!

To achieve an increased friction with the footwear, most of the professionals like the water hiking shoes which give them an upper hand from slippery conditions which they might face in the form of rain or snowfall, or even mud; thus protecting their feet from damage and / or any other negative impacts.

Choosing the most appropriate water-proofing hike shoe-pair is yet another problem for a beginner; there are different factors which need consideration when you are at the verge of a new beginning as a HIKER . The quality of what you wear on the OUTSIDE has to be top-notch and without any issues, so that everything stays healthy on the INSIDE, and once you are at the shop swelling your choices with your views, the time stretches out at its maximum !

How about you earn yourself some respectful extra advantage from the brands that you choose to wear the outfits of? Some famous ones offer rugged surfaces on their soles to decrease extra-inertia on slippery plains, spikes for a certain grip, comfortable insides to ease down running and walking, high caps to protect you from injuries or sudden balance drops! With variance comes the power of choice!

Special Note: Weather and Nature is not the only hindrance in a camping or hiking trip for people who wander in new areas every time they go out for fun! Have a nice TRIP though!

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See a Foot Surgeon If You Injure Your Feet

The next time you injure yourself make sure you have your injuries checked by the right professional. It does not matter if you sprain your ankle or break a toe, you need to see a foot surgeon as soon as possible. They can take a look at your injuries, provide you with the proper treatment and make sure your appendages heal properly. No matter how old you are, there are injuries that can greatly affect your ability to get around. While you may think that it is safe for you to let your injured limb rest and soak, you may be inadvertently making the situation much worse.

Even though the people who tend to have the most problems with healing injuries are young children and elderly adults, serious problems can occur at any age. Sometimes the care you need is beyond the care that your regular doctor can provide. In some cases, if the problem is done in its early stages, your doctor will provide you with a referral to a foot surgeon. In other cases, the problem may not be done until much later. If that occurs, then you need to take it upon yourself to seek out a credible foot surgeon.

When it comes to injuries that involve your feet, you want to get them checked and treated as soon as possible. Imagine how challenging it would be for you to have to go through your days trying to get around town with injured feet? Think about how upset you would be if you end up disabled because you failed to seek out proper medical attention. Just because you have to see one of the specialists does not mean that you will be having surgery. There are several different kinds of treatments that they can recommend to improve your condition.

In order to improve the quality of care you will receive, make sure that you take the time to get several opinions. It does not matter if you have health insurance or not, it is in your best interest to see several professionals so you can feel more confident and make an informed decision about what needs to be done for your condition. No matter what type of treatment is recommended for you, make sure you plan accordingly for it. If you are going to be doing physical therapy, then make sure you have a positive outlook and energetic mood for each session. If you are going to have surgery, make sure you follow all of your foot surgeon's instructions before and after the procedure. You may need to make arrangements for assistance once you have had your operation until you are well enough to get around on your own. Do not take any chances with your body and health. You owe it to yourself to see the best professional capable of providing you with the care you need so you can continue to live an active and healthy lifestyle.

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Foot Fitness Tips: A Simple Point and Flex Exercise for Healthy, Pain-Free Feet

Are you walking with sore feet? Running with weak ankles? Dancing with tired toes? Cycling with stiff calves? Find yourself stuck all day sitting behind a desk with knee or back pain? Discover easy ways to start alleviating all these little aches and pains with a few quick and easy foot-care stretching and strengthening exercises.

The different ways we use, or misuse, our feet can create annoying foot and ankle problems and be a contributing factor other aches, pains, and injuries. If you're dealing with an acute crime, be sure to get things checked out and consult with your doctor, and orthopedic specialist, or podiatrist as a precaution before you do anything.

If you've been cleared to exercise, it may be time to find new strategies and solutions to keep you healthy and keep your poor tired, achy feet out of trouble. Perhaps it may be time to pay a little more attention to your ankles, arches and toes on a regular basis during your workouts. With even a short 5-10 minutes of dedicated foot fitness training there is a lot you can do to start helping your feet feel better.

Tendons, ligaments, fascia, muscle and bone are all connected. This network of support for our structure has to be in balance for us to enjoy healthy, pain-free movement. Ligaments connect bone to bone, tendons connect muscle to bone, fascia is the supportive matrix for muscle and muscles move bones.

What Happens When You Have Stiff, Tight, Inflexible Ankles, Arches, and Toes

When the foot and calf muscles are too tight, movement is restricted and more stress is placed on muscle, fascia and tendons which can contribute to Achilles tendon problems, heel pain and plantar fasciitis, just to name a few annoying foot problems.

The result of not enough stretching and poor flexibility … Restricted mobility. Muscles that are too tight may one day “accidentally” get stretched farther than they can comfortably go and – rip, tear, strain and voilà an injury!

The Challenges of Dealing with Weak Feet and Ankles

If muscles are weak, especially along the soles of the feet, there is a good chance that as soon as we start to contract a foot muscle it will cramp or lock up in a spasm! Muscle cramps prevent us from wanting to engage our muscles, so we avoid movement with the ankle, foot or toes that might cause the muscles to cramp. The result of never contracting a muscle … It will get weaker and weaker, and will cramp sooner and more severely if you do anything that requires its use!

How can you balance the work of the muscles along the soles of the feet with an effective stretch to keep the calves, arches, heels and ankles happy?

Here is a very simple point and flex foot and ankle exercise that can help you enjoy healthy feet and improve both strength and flexibility! Use these helpful tips to effectively stretch the calves to keep your calves, heels, and plantar fascia happy AND strengthen the soles of the feet to keep your arches lifted and reduce or eliminate foot cramps.

Foot Fitness for Healthy Feet – Point & Flex Exercise

You can practice pointing and flexing your feet in any position, seated, lying down, both legs at the same time, one leg at a time or with the help of a Yoga strap or theraband. There are lots of options for variety and to help challenge and target all the muscles of your feet, ankles, and legs.

To start, I recommend doing a Seated Point & Flex exercise.

  • Start in an L-Sit position. (If you're hip and hamstrings are tight sit up on a box or phone book to be able to achieve a tall back position.
  • Keeping the legs straight, but not locked, reach both heels out of your body to “flex” or “hinge” the ankles. Try to avoid pulling the toes back to flex the foot. Keep the toes relaxed and lead from the heel to hinge the foot into the flexed position.
  • Hold the flexed foot position and breathe. Take 3-5 breaths and see if on every exhale you can reach farther out through the heel to deepen the flex (and get a better stretch).
  • To transition to the pointed position, begin by moving from the ankle to hinge the foot as far as possible in the other direction.
  • Once the ankle has reached its endpoint, use the muscles along the sole of the foot to point the toes. (Like a ballerina.) Inhale to continue lengthening out through the top of the foot, exhale to deepen the contracting under the sole of the foot to point the toes more. Take 3-5 breaths.
  • Release the toes, and begin reaching out through the heel to hinge the ankle into the flexed position and repeat the exercise.
  • Continue to alternate between the flex and the point for 5-10 repetitions.

Use this Point & Flex exercise as a warm-up, or after a workout as a cool-down stretch. You can also apply this Healthy Movement Habits ™ strategy anytime you are doing exercises that involve flexing and pointing the foot.

Helpful Healthy Movement Habit Hints for Flexing the Foot:

  • There is a difference between flexing the foot by leading with the toes pulling back, and flexing the foot by reaching out through the heel. Be sure to hinge by leading with the heel to lengthen and stretch the calf, Achilles and arch of the foot.
  • The less the toes pull back, and the less the front of the ankle “grips” the freer the hinge will be and the better stretch you'll achieve.
  • Watch your foot alignment; be sure the big and little toe sides of your foot pull back evenly for good ankle alignment while you are moving.

Helpful Healthy Movement Habit Hints for Pointing the Foot:

  • When you point, strive to lead by lengthening the top of the arch and foot out and away from the body. Avoid pointing by pulling the heel back towards you.
  • When you point the toes, feel the muscles under the front of the arch move the toes, and continue to limit the amount of “pulling” to point that you feel with the heel.
  • Maintain proper foot alignment; be sure from the toes to the ankle, to the knee that everything is lined up correctly to ensure you are using the right muscles to do the work.

While it may seem like an incredibly simple exercise to just point and flex the foot, paying attention to the fine-tuning your muscle firing habits and the finer points of good movement habits will ensure you are getting all the benefits you need from this easy, but effective foot fitness exercise.

And if you happen to be practicing your point and flex foot fitness exercise and are getting a calf stretch but also can feel a stretch along the back of your thigh (this would be the Hamstring muscles) it is even more important to be doubling up your efforts to practice this foot and ankle exercise daily to help improve your flexibility to keep your feet, legs, hips, and back healthy.

Stiff ankles, and tight calves can lead to lower back problems. Incorporating pointing and flexing exercises for your feet into your weekly workouts is a great way to help your feet feel better, help you enjoy better health for your lower back, and keep you feeling fit with better posture all the way up to the top of your head!

By training good functional movement of the foot and avoiding “bad” habits to point and flex, you can reduce the risk of foot and ankle injuries, alleviate chronic foot pain problems, and ensure that you are properly stretching and strengthening ankle, heel and arches to keep your feet and whole body 100% healthy.

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What Can You Do About Cold Feet?

There are many people who do not really take into consideration the importance of the feet. Often times the feet became one of the most neglected parts of the body. So it is very important to understand that they also require constant care in order to avoid more serious problems which may occur as a result of a combination of factors.

Ways to avoid cold feet.

Keeping feet warm is one of the most difficult challenges for most people suffering from cold feet. Usually the cold feet issues can be minimized by preparing yourself in advance.

If there is no underlying medical cause for cold feet, then the following are some approaches that may help you to cope with icy feet. The best way for people to deal with icy feet is to stop body heat loss. When the body is warm, it sends warm blood to the feet and hands to warm them up.

In the winter make sure to keep the feet as dry and warm as possible. Avoid wearing any cotton socks. The problem with cotton socks is that they absorb and hold sweat and practice guarantees cold feet. Instead, try wearing socks made of polypropylene fibers because they hold heat well and keep your feet warm.

• The most important measure to prevent icy feet is to be extra careful during winter and try not going out in the cold weather without wearing insulated waterproof shoes and proper protection for the body.

Fact: If your feet are wet they will most likely get cold as well.

• Avoid wearing tightly fitting socks and shoes.

Fact: If your shoes are too tight it will make your feet colder because you will restrict the circulation in your feet.

If poor circulation is the problem, perform exercises that are another key approach that can best help you to increase blood flow to the feet and make them warm again.

Fact: If the blood does not circulate to your feet, they will not get warm.

Regular physical activity may help you to improve blood circulation.

• Adding warm spices like ginger, caraway, cloves, black pepper, cinnamon, anise etc in your foods is another simple way to cope with wintry feet.

Also eat a nutritionally balanced diet rich in minerals and vitamins because your body needs it to function properly.

• Stop smoking, smoking worsens blood circulation of whole body.

• Drink plenty of liquids daily to prevent dehydration is also important. If you're dehydrated this just increasing the chance for getting cold feet.

Get a massage. A foot massage for sure, can be very beneficial for people with poor circulation in feet.

Fact: The massage stimulates circulation and blood flow to the feet, which in turn can guarantee warm feet.

Hydro massages are also helpful in getting rid of cold feet when followed properly.

A glass of red wine a day is also beneficial for folks who suffer from poor circulation in feet, as it helps to dilate blood vessels and bring back blood flow to the extremities.

Fact: When blood vessels are opening up, the flow of blood is increased.

The ways of dealing with cold feet may vary from person to person. That is why experimenting is the only way to know what works for you and what does not. Of course on the other hand with a proper foot care most cases of cold feet problems can be avoided.

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Lifestyle and Home Remedies for Morton’s Neuroma

A neuroma is a growth that can develop in certain parts of the body. Morton's neuroma is a neuroma that develops in the foot. When one or more of the nerves running from the heels and feet to the toes thickens, Morton's neuroma can occur.

In the initial stages of neuroma, the symptoms can only be felt during certain activities or when wearing certain types of shoes. The symptoms include feeling of burning, stinging, or numbness of the feet or toes. If left untreated, it can develop into a chronic painful condition.

The most basic way to manage neuroma is by resting the feet. Take a break and reduce high impact activities such as dancing, jogging, running, and aerobic exercises.

Gently massaging the area with a topical pain reliever can also provide comfort. Regular ice massage can also help reduce the pain. Apply ice to the ball of the foot, not directly to the toes. It is important not to freeze the area but just to apply the ice for 5 to 10 minutes at a time, every two to four hours.

Stretching exercises may also assist in relieving the pressure on the feet. The stretches should be held for at least 10 seconds to get the most benefit. These stretches include the plantar fascia stretch, wall stretch, calf stretch, bottle roll, and tower stretch. In stretching the plantar fascia, grasp the heel in one hand while the other hand is on the toes. Gently pull the forefoot and toes to create a slight pull along the bottom of the foot. The wall stretch is done by facing the wall with the feet apart. Place both hands on the wall while one foot steps back. Bend the knees and lean into the wall while keeping the boots on the floor. Using a bottle full of ice, roll it back and forth along the bottom of the foot. This is called the bottle roll. The towel stretch involves sitting on the floor with legs stretched. Place the ball of the foot in the middle of a towel while grasping both ends to pull your forefoot back.

Another simple remedy is by using a gel pad to cushion the ball of the foot. Wearing wider shoes with a padded insole can help. Also, changing footwear and choosing shoes with a broad toe box will less compression on the neuroma. Women should refrain from wearing high heeled shoes and opt for flat shoes instead.

Taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen and aspirin can treat pain and decrease swelling.

If these home treatments for neuroma fail and the pain is severe or persistent, see a doctor for treatment. Your podiatrist may recommend corticosteroid injections, alcohol injections, or surgery as a last resort.

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How Long Does Plantar Fasciitis Last?

Plantar Faciitis, like all other other injuries, vararies in severity with respect to the individual. The time taken to recover from Plantas fascitiis can widely, suffering from a lot of things.

The most important one of these things, is diagnosing the issue when it starts to happen. There's no question that the sooner your plantar fascia pain gets diagnosed the simpler it will be to tackle it, which may shorten your recovery time.

The way to speed up recovery.

Many individuals ignore plantar faciitis – but his is not the right plan of action.

When you feel pain in your heels from PF it is incredibly important to give them a break. This will aid recovery of the problem and may make difference between being forced to rest for a few weeks and several months.

There are more things that can help you on your way to recovering from plantar fascia, including:

  • Stretching.
  • Physical Rehabilitation.
  • Massage Treatment.
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Cold and hot treatments.

It does not mean that all of these treatments will work for everyone. All bodies are different just as all feet vary, so the ability to heal will be different from person to person.

You will need to seek medical help and obtain some rest as soon as possible, since not addressing the issue can extend your time to recover considering and might, in a few rare cases, end in you requiring surgery.

How long will it take for you to recover?

As discussed above, there's no typical time to recover. However, it can take the body up to 4 years to recuperate from this condition. It is important that you do anything that your physician tells you, since those are the best chances to get the quickest recovery.

Doctors and podiatrists advice is most valued particularly because the approach is really holistic and therapeutic and also one that places great responsibility around the patient.

There are lots of degrees to just how much plantar fascitiis might be affecting your life. It may well stop you from playing sports altogether or it may well simply mean a decline in the quantity and quality of your exercise or training. A lot of people decide to go for alternative treatments like acupuncture, which, based on what a lot of people have reported, has helped consider. However, you'll find almost no studies done with this particular point, so results can not be scientifically confirmed or proven.

Alternative treatments can be expensive and there could be too little resources regarding the effectiveness. Although it's correct these alternative treatments can fix plantar fasciitis, it's also true that there are some disadvantages which need to be taken into consideration.

This type of foot pain is not the kind which just disappears overnight. Sometimes, even after receiving treatment, the pain can occur again without warning. Unfortunately, this means that the person who is being affected by it requires to start treatment all over again.

Also it can be very hard to remain motivated and positive and become responsible regarding their recovery. It really is pivotal that if you are affected by plantar fasciitis pushes past these thoughts and lasts with treatment, since not doing so can bring about more undesirable consequences.

You should follow doctor's orders in order that your plantar fasciitis recovery time is as quick and painless as possible.

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How Do You Get Neuroma and the Common Factors That Contribute to Neuroma

Although the exact cause of neuroma remains unclear, there are a number of factors that can contribute to neuroma formation. Find out more about this condition.

Neuroma or Morton's neuroma is commonly found between the toes, most commonly the third and fourth toes. The most common symptoms are burning sensation towards the toes, stinging sensation, or pain under the ball of the foot.

Foot problems such as flat feet or high arched feet can lead to the formation of neuroma. In flat feet, the soles of the feet come into contact with the ground. The low arches causes more pressure to be exerted on the forefoot, leading to compression and irritation of the nerves. In high arches, the insteps of the feet are raised more than normal, and can also cause irritation of the nerves. Other foot problems that may increase the risk of developing neuroma are bunions, hammer toes, and abnormally positioned toes.

Wearing the wrong types of footwear can make neuroma pain worse. Shoes that are too tight, pointed shoes, and high-heels specifically shoes over two inches. These types of footwear can compress the toes and make the pain worse.

Being very active in sports can also worsen the symptoms of neuroma. In particular, sports that involve running can aggravate the condition because this can put extra strain on the nerves in the feet. When the weight of the body is applied to the sides of the feet, this can cause the bones to pinch the nerves. Any other sport or physical activity that triggers repetitive stress on the forefoot can worsen neuroma.

Previous foot injuries or any other type of foot trauma can also be the cause of neuroma. This may be by blunt trauma to the forefoot or a direct injury to the nerve. Over time, the continued compression can cause more damage to the nerve.

During the early stages of neuroma, conservative treatments are often successful. Wearing proper footwear, avoiding activities that can worsen the condition and immobilization can be helpful. Physical therapy can also be helpful in the early stages.

Other treatments are custom orthotics, corticosteroid injections, alcohol sclerosing injections, and cryotherapy. Surgicla procedures such as nerve decompression and nerve excision are also sometimes done. However, surgery is often the last resort since this carries some risks associated with all surgical procedures such as swelling, pain, recurrence of the condition, bleeding problems, delayed healing, and infection.

Fifty percent of patients who undergo surgery for neuroma regret it, no matter who the surgeon is. Pain can be worse than the original neuroma! If you feel that you might be suffering from Morton's neuroma, seek advice from a doctor or surgeon who specializes in foot disorders to learn about nonsurgical treatments for neuroma .

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Common Toenail Problems

Our tonels have a rough time; they deal with a lot of stress. They rub against shoes, stub against objects, and are often in closed, dark places with lots of fungi and bacteria (the insides of your shoes can be dirty too). With these conditions that are toenails are often subject too, it's no wonder they have these three common toenail problems.

1. Ingrown Toenail
You get an ingrown toenail, usually on the big toe, when the edge of the toenail grows into the skin beside it. This can be very painful and often accompanied by swelling, redness, and discharge of pus that is a common characteristic of an infection. The ingrown part of the toenail is usually invisible because it is below the skin. An ingrown toenail can be caused by improperly fitting shoes or socks or having an abnormal toe shape.

Treatment of an ingrown toenail involves having the ingrown part of the nail removed. There may be cases where surgery is necessary. Removal of the ingrown toenail can alleviate the pain but it can be a recurring problem.

2. Fungus
Toenail fungus is also known as onychomycosis. It is a slow-growing infection that affects the nail and the skin under it. This is usually caused by the same type of fungus that cause's athlete's foot. People who are likely to have athlete's foot may also be at risk of toenail fungal infections.

Toenail fungal infections can be seen as a yellow, brown, or white discoloration of the toenail. Occasionally, the toenail will thicken and have debris. This infection can be difficult to treat because it is located under the nail. The most successful treatment method has been oral antifungal medicine, with the downside of having side effects.

3. Toenail Trauma
Injuries done to the nail's matrix, or growth center, can result in a lot of changes to the nail. Toenails can experience chronic and repetitive trauma from rubbing against a shoe while walking or running. Trauma can come from an acute injury, like stubbing the toe or having something dropped on it. There may be blood and bruising under the toenail, the toenail can thicken, or you can even lose the toenail completely.

When a nail does come loose, there may be secondary fungal or bacterial infection that occurs. Acute trauma can also cause the bone under the nail to fracture.

Depending on the amount of trauma and damage to the nail and its surrounding skin, you may need to get medical help.

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The Three Things You Need to Know About Neuroma

A neuroma or Morton's neuroma is a common painful foot condition. It may cause a burning or sharp pain or may feel like stepping on a marble. The condition seems to come about in response to injury, irritation, or pressure to one of the nerves that lead to the toes. This then leads to thickened nerve tissue as a response of the body to the injury or irritation.

There are many ways to treat neuroma. If you have foot pain that lasts several days or if you feel burning pain in the ball of your foot that fails to improve, you might be suffering from Morton's neuroma. It is best to see a doctor for further evaluation. Below are the three things that you need to know about neuroma.

1) You do not NEED surgery.

There are many new and improved ways to treat this painful lesion of the foot without going through surgery. The nonsurgical treatment for neuroma are equally as effective as removing the neuroma, but without any of the common side effects or risks associated with surgery. The best part is that these treatment options can be done multiple times without negative consequences, and in most cases even with previous surgery performed, the modalities can be very effective to less pain and improve your day to day walks.

2) After injection therapy or sclerosing agents, orthotics will be needed.

Most patients presume that once the pain is gone, wearing orthotics is no longer necessary. On the other hand, orthotics are very important at this stage because your foot will resume previous function after the neuroma pain is resolved, and this can make you a choice to repeat pain later on. In the proper hands, a custom molded device, or an accommodative apparatus off the shelf can improve function in shoe gear which will help the metatarsal bones stay apart so that a future nerve problem can be much less likely to recur.

Custom orthotics that aim to restore the arch of the foot and relieve the pressure and irritation have been effective treatments. The more pressure that can be relieved from the nerve, the better the output.

3) Radiofrequency ablation works

Many patients have had previous treatments attempted. These include multiple cortisone injections, orthotic devices, and even surgery. The use of radio frequency ablation can give excellent results even with the most difficult cases. This is one of the latest and least invasive technologies to deal with foot pain.

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Neuroma Secrets

The pain of neuroma may feel like a persistent pain in the ball of the foot that may radiate to the toes. For others it may feel like walking on marbles, standing on a pebble inside the shoe, tingling, or numbness of the toes.

Anyone can be affected by neuroma.

The specific cause of neuroma is not known but there are certain factors that are believed to trigger the condition. Among these are foot problems such as high foot arches, flat feet, hammertoes, atypical positioning of the toes, and bunions. Previous foot injuries, irritation, or pressure to the nerves which lead to the toes can also contribute to neuroma formation. Other causes that may elicit the symptoms are wearing shoes that are too tight, wearing too narrow footwear, or constant use of high-heeled shoes.

High-heeled shoes, particularly those over three inches, pointed at the toes, or shoes with a tight shoe box may squash the toes together, worsening the symptoms. People with flat feet are also more at risk. This is a condition in which almost the entire soles of the feet come into contact with the ground. High arches, on the other hand are more likely to suffer from Morton's neuroma. A hammertoe is a deformity of the proximal interphalangeal joint of the toes, more commonly the second, third, and fourth toes. The toes appear to be permanently bent.

Morton's neuroma is more common in women, the ratio being 4: 1. The symptoms are usually felt on one foot and they commonly occur in the fifth decade of life.

Neuroma treatment depends on the extent of the symptoms. Some treatments for neuroma are the use of arch supports, shoe inserts, steroid injections, decompression surgery, or removal of the nerve.

Foot pads or arch supports are worn inside the shoe to help decrease the pressure on the nerve. These may be custom-made or can also be purchased over the counter. The advantage of prescribed shoe inserts are these are molded to fit the exact shape of your feet.

Some individuals benefit from steroid injections into the affected area. Other treatments are cryogenic neuroablation and surgery. This can be decompression surgery to relieve the pressure on the nerve or this may also involve removal of the nerve if the other treatments fail. This type of surgery is often the last resort because it has the risk of causing permanent numbness in the affected tubes.

Morton's neuroma is common among dancers, runners, and other athletes but can affect anyone. If you feel that you might be suffering from Morton's neuroma , seek advice from a doctor or surgeon who specializes in foot disorders.

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What Do Podiatrists Do?

Podiatry is a branch of allied health devoted to the diagnosis, prevention and medical treatment of disorders of the foot, ankle and lower extremity. Podiatrists are specifically trained to identify and treat biomechanical issues that will inevitably lead to injury or decreased performance.

Podiatrists specialize in a foot-related problem including injuries to muscles, tendon, ligaments and joint, nail and skin issues such as callus, ingrown toenails, blisters and fungal infections and systemic disease that manifest themselves in the foot such as diabetes and neurological conditions.

Muscle or Joint Injuries in the Foot

When a patient sufferers a foot or lower leg injury they should see a podiatrist as soon as possible to receive the appropriate advice and treatment. The podiatrist will need to understand the cause of the injury, any previous injuries and the level of activity prior to the injury occurring. A thorough examination of the injury site will then be connected including: muscle / joint testing, range of motion studies, ultrasound / X-ray / MRI referral and strength tests to determine a diagnosis.

A comprehensive biomechanical assessment of the patient walking or running will then be carried out to outline any issues with foot / knee or hip alignment that may be causing or contributing to the condition. Video gait analysis is used to identify any biomechanical issues to be able to clearly and fairly to explain them to the patient and any other involved health practitioners.

Depending on the diagnosis, soft tissue therapy, orthotics, shoe configurations, dry needling, stretching / strengthening programs and gait re-training may be prescribed.

Nail and Skin Problems in the Foot

Podiatrists care for any skin and nail problem involving the feet. Corns and callus can be caused by foot deformities (bunions, high arches, hammer toes), poor fitting shoes or excessive high impact activities. A podiatrist will use sterile instruments to gently remove the hard skin and then provide advice on future prevention and management strategies. Ingrown toenails, fungal and hard, thickened nails can be easily easily using medical grade techniques to provide painless and quick solutions to resolve the problem.

Treatment Techniques

Soft Tissue Therapies – These include massage, mobilization, manipulation and stretching to reduce pain and swelling and increase movement and flexibility to the foot, ankle and leg.

Dry Needling – Similar to acupuncture, dry needling is used to treat injured muscles and tendons by placing very fine, sterile needles into the skin. The needle is placed in trigger points or tender areas to stimulate a sensory response from within the muscle fibers causing a release of the constriction and allowing normal muscle function.

Orthotics – If a biomechanical issue is detected after a video gait analysis, orthotics may be used to provide corrective support to realign lower limbs structures to improve postural stability, decrease stress on certain muscles and joints to improve foot and lower limb function.

Gait re-training / Shoe fitting – Sports podiatrists can work with patients to improve running technique, assessment and fit proper running shoes and discuss training programs to reduce over-training and improve lower limit strength and flexibility to better reduce the risk of running-related injury.

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Healthy Eating Tips That You Did Not Know

It's obvious everyone should be trying to live a healthy well balanced lifestyle so that you can maintain good health and live a long fulfilled life. Diets and eating healthy really do not need to be that difficult. I think a lot of people break their healthy eating routines and diets because they set the bar too high and make these exceptionally strict eating plans instead of thinking of dieting as more of a lifestyle change. Healthy food can be really tasty and does not need to be boring in the slightest. I have provided a couple of healthy eating tips below.

Fruit and Vegetables

We should be eating around five different vegetables and fruits on a daily basis which can sound quite daunting at first. It's really a lot easier than you think because you can just have fruit with your breakfast and have mixed vegetables at night with whatever meal you decide to cook for dinner. You can find a number of books from online health shops about fruit and vegetables.

Fish is great

Fish contains many vital vitamins, minerals and has a very high protein content which is great for weight loss since protein takes a lot more energy to digest than carbohydrates. Fish also contains essential fats such as omega 3 fats. These are known to decrease the risk of heart disease drastically. You can also keep fish in the freezer and not have to worry about going to the shop every day to purchase the freshest fish on the market.

Decrease Your Fat Intake

Fat is essential in any diet, but there are different kinds of fat that are either good or bad for you. We have both planned and unsaturated. Too much saturated fat will increase your cholesterol levels which will increase your risk of heart disease. These fats are usually found in chocolates, chips, biscuits and cakes. Unsaturated fats are found in vegetable oils, fish and avocados. When you cooking meat make sure to use only a little bit of oil or butter.

Reduce Your Salt Intake

You will be surprised how much salt there is in the food you are currently eating. Try not to add too much salt to your food as this will likely increase your blood pressure fairly drastically. Having high blood pressure will increase your risk of having a stroke or heart disease.

Start Exercising

Probably the most important part of a healthy lifestyle is trying to do lots of exercise. This is great for your heart and blood flow. Chances of heart disease will increase drastically with lots of exercise.

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Do Flat Feet Cause Heel Pain and Plantar Fasciitis?

Overview

Millions of individuals on the planet planet suffer from chronic heel pain, and the condition seems to be extremely hard to bear in the mornings, after a period of rest. The best known and most common cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, a condition that affects people especially after a certain age, or those that have a certain condition, such as flat feet.

Plantar fascia is a band of tissue that stretches from the toes and the heel bone. When this tissue becomes inflamed, heel pain appears, and, in some people, it can become such a severe health issue, that surgery is recommended. Over pronation (the unusual stretching of plantar fascia) is usually the cause, and flat feet can contribute to this consequence. The pains that are most commonly experienced occur after longer periods of rest. Treatment is available available, and consist of medication, homemade remedies, orthotics and surgery in extreme cases.

With proper care, plantar fasciitis can be corrected, and pain can be relieved. More on the link between plantar fasciitis and flat feet, as well as the best course of treatment, as follows.

Symptoms of plantar fasciitis

It is very important to understand the symptoms of plantar fasciitis, so that you do not mistake it for other conditions. The most important symptom of plantar fasciitis is the pain in the heel experienced as soon as you get out of bed. The same type of pain can be experienced when you change the weight your feet have to support. While you may feel less numb or stiff as soon as you take a few steps, you will notice how the heel pain stretches through the day, despite walking more.

In case you experience pains in the feet at night, plantar fasciitis may not be the source. The best way of diagnosing this specific condition is by visiting your physician or a specialist and asking for proper advice.

The link between flat feet and heel pain

It is known by specialists that flat feet can contribute to plantar fasciitis and heel pain, even in young people. The thing that happens every time you place your feet on a hard surface is that plantar fascia starts to stretch causing micro-tearing at tissue level. While you may not be able to notice it exactly when this happens, after periods of rest, such as sleeping overnight, when you step out of bed, plantar fascia will stretch again, causing micro-tearing to happen.

As you may easily imagine, it takes plenty of time for those small tissue tears to heal. However, if you do not do anything to help the tissue heal, the pain will become more and more severe, and, after a while, you will find it more and more difficult to carry out with your daily activities that require standing up or walking .

In the case of people with flat feet, over pronation is the main cause of plantar fasciitis. As plantar fascia stretches more, creating more tension on the medial arch, and pulling more at the insertion point in the heel, they experience heel pain.

It is worth noting that not all flat feet cause plantar fasciitis in the same manner. The most harmful condition is caused by the highest navicular drop that happens when the arch drop is the most severe. The higher the arch drop, the more chances are that the person with this type of flat feet will also experience heel pain and plantar fasciitis.

While there are other factors that contribute to such feet conditions, like obesity, illness, and age, flat feet can lead to plantar fasciitis and heel pain. It is very important that the doctor identifies correctly the cause of your heel pain, in order to prescribe the best treatment.

What treatment options are available?

In case you have flat feet and you suffer from plantar fasciitis and heel pain, you should know that treatment is readily available. 95% of people experiencing plantar fasciitis get away with non-surgical treatments and their condition is greatly improved. Surgery is recommended only in severe cases, and it is quite rare, but it can be appealed to, if the situation requires it.

The first thing you should do when you start experiencing unusual pains in the feet is to allow them to rest. The purpose of any treatment for plantar fasciitis is to allow the torn tissue to heal, and this can only be achieved if you stop stretching plantar fascia. Since people with certain flat feet conditions suffer from a drop in arch height that causes plantar fascia to stretch even more than in the case of a normal arch foot, rest is especially recommended.

Over pronation is what causes plantar fasciitis to appear in people with flat feet in the first place, and this must be corrected. A fairly easy way of doing this is by wearing proper shoes that are capable of absorbing shock, and also provide the feet with a normal arch position. Cushioned soles are a solution, but only if their shape corresponds. In general, preventing plantar fasciitis should include the use of proper footwear that does not cause the plantar fascia to stretch abnormally.

Your doctor may also recommend you ice packs that you must apply on the inflamed tissue, in order to help reduce the inflammation in the plantar fascia, as well as anti-inflammatory medications. However, these can only help you temporarily, and, in case you suffer from chronic heel pain, you need to appeal to more reliable solutions that can correct the problem in the long run.

Long term solutions

It is recommended to start with the aforementioned advice when dealing with plantar fasciitis and heel pain. However, if your situation does not improve, after six weeks, it is time to let your doctor know about it.

Especially for people with flat feet, over pronation can modify the shape of the feet to such a great extent that normal footwear can not correct it. What you need is to get a prescription for orthotics. These are nothing else but custom made shoe inserts that you can use daily in order to help your feet walk correctly on hard surfaces. The main goal of orthotics is to help modify the shape of your feet until the arch drop returns to normal levels and over pronation is no longer a cause for heel pain.

The doctor may also recommend night splints. These will help you keep the feet in the correct position, while stretching plantar fascia only lightly.

For more extreme situations when it becomes difficult even to walk, health care specialists can recommend a walking cast. While this solution may be more difficult to end, it is also one that allows your feet to rest in order to help the tissue in plantar fascia heal properly.

Physical therapy can also help you restore the normal functioning of your feet.
When is surgery recommended?

A question that may sit on your lips is about surgery. Corticosteroid shots can be prescribed to those that find the heel pain to be too much to bear, but such a solution is only short lived and it carries risks, as well.

A solution that may be offered by your doctor in case none of the aforementioned solutions leads to significant improvement after six months to one year is surgery.

This consists of cutting the ligament that keeps the plantar fascia tied to the calcaneus. Once the pressure is relieved, plantar fascia will be able to heal. However, such cases are extremely rare, and most people feel pain relief and are able to return to their normal activities by following the other treatments described a little earlier.

Conclusion

Flat feet can lead to plantar fasciitis and heel pain. Because the specific shape of the feet causes such an important arch drop, plantar fascia is forced to stretch beyond its capabilities, and the micro fibers in the tissue that links the toes with the bone bone startearing. Healing the torn tissue takes time, and resting can help a lot.

However, you need to pay a visit to your doctor and get a proper diagnosis. Not any type of flat feet can cause plantar fasciitis and heel pain. In case the arch drop is significant and the tension on plantar fascia becomes too hard to bear, the pain occurs, and more elaborate treatment is necessary.

Wearing proper footwear can help you a lot with the pains you are experiencing. In case your feet have an abnormal shape – which can happen to people with flat feet – you will need orthotics, which are custom made shoe inserts that will be created by following the specific shape of your feet.

In time, heel pain will subside and you will be able to walk, stand up and do everything else you normally do with your feet, just like before. It is important that you wear footwear that can support your arch, so that you experience less pain or none at all.

Surgery can be recommended, but only in extreme cases. In the vast majority, non-surgical treatments work best for correcting this condition.

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