Posts for: June, 2019
While there are many people with flat feet, often times they won’t even know it; however, there are others with flat feet that regularly experience pain, soreness, and other problems. While flat feet is rarely considered a serious issue, if you are dealing with problems as a result of your flat feet it’s important that you turn to a podiatrist who can offer up ways to prevent problems.
How to tell if you have flat feet
If the arches of your feet touch the floor when you stand then you have flat feet. The arches of our feet don’t actually develop until around the age of six; however, sometimes flat feet develop due to injury or repeated stress on the feet.
Symptoms of flat feet
The most common symptom of flat feet is foot pain that originates in the heels and arches. You may find that the pain gets worse when standing or moving for long periods of time. Those who are physically active may experience pain more regularly. Sometime swelling on the inside of the foot or ankle may also occur.
Potential complications of flat feet
Since flat feet can be responsible for misalignments, this can lead to ankle and knee problems. If you are noticing foot, ankle, knee, hip, or lower back pain then you will want to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to find out what’s going on.
Treating flat feet
If you aren’t experiencing pain or other issues then you won’t require any treatment for your flat feet. While we can’t fix flat feet our podiatrist can provide you with simple solutions to reduce pain and discomfort associated with faulty biomechanics within the feet. Common ways to prevent flat foot-related pain include:
- Using arch supports in your shoes, which can take pressure off the arches and provide cushioning and support when standing or moving.
- Performing certain stretching exercises prescribed by a podiatrist. There are specific exercises designed to stretch the Achilles tendon to alleviate and prevent foot pain.
- Wearing the appropriate footwear that provides further arch support. Shoes that are old and worn, as well as certain styles such as sandals or flip-flops won’t provide your feet with the proper support they need.
- Undergoing physical therapy if you are dealing with foot pain due to overuse injuries, which is common among athletes. Physical therapy can help strengthen certain ligaments, tendons and muscles of the feet and ankles to prevent excessive wear and tear, as well as pain and soreness in the arches and heels.
If you are dealing with pain due to flat feet and can’t seem to get your discomfort under control then you will want to talk with a podiatrist who can recommend certain exercises, proper footwear, and custom orthotics to improve the health of your feet. Talk to a podiatrist today.
That ache in your heel may actually be a symptom of a common foot condition called plantar fasciitis. While this issue is painful to the point of daily life disruption, there are fortunately a number of ways to ease your discomfort, and our Vineland, NJ, podiatrist, Dr. Jeffrey Belancio, can help!
Could I have plantar fasciitis?
You might have plantar fasciitis if:
- You have painful mornings: People who have plantar fasciitis often notice that their heel pain is more intense first thing in the morning. The sharp, stabbing pain may only last a few minutes, but it can make getting out of bed quite an unpleasant experience.
- Sitting makes things worse: Standing or walking after a period of inactivity can also cause your pain to intensify.
- The pain crept up on you: Plantar fasciitis pain often develops slowly over a period of weeks or months.
- Post-exercise pain is a problem: Plantar fasciitis pain can be affected by exercise, but the pain usually doesn't start until after you stop exercising.
How did I get plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis occurs when the tough band of tissue that connects your toes to your heels becomes inflamed. You're more likely to develop the condition if you don't wear shoes that adequately cushion/support your feet, have tight calf muscles or high or low arches, are overweight, or your job requires long periods of standing.
People who have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher are five times more likely to have plantar fasciitis than those who have a BMI lower than 25, according to the NCCIH analysis.
What can my Vineland foot doctor do to help me?
Your foot doctor can offer a variety of helpful treatments, devices, and therapies, including:
- Night splints
- Physical therapy
- Corticosteroid injections
- Removable walking casts
- Extracorporeal shockwave therapy
- Surgery (only needed in severe cases)
Ease your heel pain with a visit to the podiatrist! Call your Vineland, NJ, podiatrist, Dr. Jeffrey Belancio, at (856) 839-0579 to schedule an appointment.
Often, the problems in your feet and ankles go away with time, rest, ice, anti-inflammatories and changing your shoes. However, sometimes these problems just won’t go away, and that's when you should visit your foot doctor for further diagnosis and treatment.
When Should I See a Foot Doctor?
If you are having a specific foot problem, your best bet is to visit your foot doctor for the best care available. Several serious conditions, such as diabetes and peripheral arterial disease, can show up in your feet first, making it more important than ever to get them checked out.
A Wound or Sore That Does Not Heal
If you have an open sore on your foot or ankle, you should visit your foot doctor immediately! This is especially important if you have diabetes, as it takes a diabetic longer to heal even when being treated.
Some changes to your feet are normal as you age, but having pain isn’t one of them. As you begin putting more miles on your feet, you may notice that your feet change shape, lose cushioning, experience skin changes, develop arthritis and experience an array of other complications. It's always best to get checked by your foot doctor rather than unknowingly let a serious foot issue worsen, especially as you age.
Pain Increasing with Activity or Lasting more than 24 Hours
If you are experiencing pain that gets worse with activity, this may be a sign of a stress fracture. You should not try to work through the pain. Instead, it is vital that you visit your foot doctor. If you treat a stress fracture early, you can potentially avoid more serious problems, such as a stress fracture that will not heal, or one that turns into a fully broken bone.
Don’t ignore your foot or ankle pain! Visit your foot doctor for diagnosis, treatments, and to help prevent your symptoms from worsening.