feet

Going Skiing this Weekend?

skiing

I am sure that everyone reading this had their parents tell them when they were younger to cover their feet, hands, and chins when going out in the cold to prevent frost bite just as my parents always did. My answer growing up was always “it’s not that cold.” It turns out that frost bite is more common than you probably think. Most people think that it is only seen in the homeless but I am here to tell you this in not the case.

Should I try Barefoot Running?! Lonnie Kaplan DPM

I am sure that everyone has heard about barefoot/ minimalist running as I am constantly asked about this when my runners come and see me in the office. One important thing to remember is that barefoot running is running without any shoes and minimalist running is running with shoes designed not to change your gait pattern. (5 finger shoes) When running most people strike the ground with their heel and then transfer weight to the their forefoot and then toes. Most people are not natural forefoot strikers as barefoot runners frequently talk about. A forefoot striker is a person that when running, has the ball of the foot strike the ground first and then the calf muscles contract to prevent the heel from slamming into the ground. Since you are hitting the ground with the ball of the foot, which does not have as much cushioning as the heel, there is an increased risk of forefoot injuries such as stress fractures, neuromas, as well as Achilles tendon strains and sprains because the Achilles is working hard to prevent the heel from slamming into the ground with every stride.

In the past when most running was done on grassy or soft surfaces, this may have been an okay form of running. Unfortunately, in today’s society, most running is done on pavement or sidewalks and rarely on grassy surfaces that offer more cushioning to the feet. Constantly running on pavement as a barefoot runner, has a negative effect on the entire front of the foot. Combining this with the increasing BMI’s in the United States does not lend itself well to most people running barefoot.

If barefoot running is something that you are interested in trying or have further questions about it, call Quality Foot Care  today at 215-230-9707 to make an appointment with Doylestown’s local podiatrists!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture from: Rochestermedia.com

Prolonged Standing Can Cause Health Problems

prolonged standing

 

We all hear about how sitting too much at work is bad for our health. But, what about those who have to stand for many hours at their jobs? Are there health risks associated with standing too long while working?

The answer is yes, standing too long without breaks at your job can cause health problems. In a recent study published in Human Factors, prolonged standing can lead to a myriad of health problems including back problems and joint pain.

The first author Maria Garcia, notes that long-term muscle aches and fatigue resulting from prolonged standing has not received very much research. In the study, it is also proven that both young and old are affected. Those participating in the study were 12 women and 14 men. The age groups were broken into two groups and participants were simulating standing work for 5 hours at an interval.

According to the Canadian Center for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), working in a standing position on a regular basis can lead not only to fatigue and lower back pain but can also cause other health problems such as sore feet, swollen legs, varicose veins and stiffness in the neck and shoulders.

So, what should employers do in a situation where employees have to stand for long periods of time? When the work requires employees to be standing for long periods of time high chairs can be provided to allow the worker to sit for a bit.

In a work place that is trying to be well-balanced, the workers are allowed to be in a number of positions including sitting down and standing. Unfortunately, not all work places are so accommodating and the standing can begin to takes its toll.

Saving Your Feet

For those who have no choice but to stand while working there are things that you can do to help alleviate the foot and muscle aches and pains.

  • Put your feet up while on breaks and this includes your lunch breaks.
  • Wear shoes with good support.
  • Watch your weight as extra weight puts strain on your legs and feet.
  • Exercise regularly to maintain good circulation.
  • Eat a low salt diet to avoid excess swelling.
  • Do not wear tight hosiery or high heels.
  • Change your standing position regularly.

You are not going to last too long as a great employee if you are having issues with your feet. It is very important to take care of yourself and your feet. Long periods of standing do take a toll on your body but following the simple tips above will help alleviate problems that may arise.

When you get home after work and have been standing on your feet for hours, treat them kindly. Put your feet up or give them a nice warm soak in warm water and Epsom salt. Not only will your feet thank you, your whole body will. Taking even just a few minutes to take care of your feet will make a big difference.

For foot problems that just do not seem to get better, be sure to make an appointment with your foot specialist.

Sunburn on Feet……Ouch!

sunburn on feet

Summer is great and warm and this is why many people head for the lakes, oceans and ponds. The thing that many forget is to be careful when exposing the skin to direct sunlight for numerous hours. Yes, there is sunscreen but many people do not think to put it on their feet. It’s easy to remember to put it on your face, arms and legs. Just the thought of having to dress for work with a sunburn is enough to make us remember. The problem is that when the feet get a sunburn we have to learn the hard way how uncomfortable it is to put shoes on over a sunburn. Not only is the sunburn painful you now get to add the agony of being in shoes at work for hours on end.

Sunburn on Top of Feet

When you have a sunburn on the top of your feet it can be super painful. No matter what type of shoe you decide to wear it hurts. Sandals and flip-flops have straps and other shoes have ties. Trying to be comfortable with sunburnt feet seems impossible.

Sunburn on Feet Treatment

If your feet are severely swollen and blistered it is time to see your foot doctor. A foot doctor can give you a prescription for medication to help alleviate the pain.  If your feet are sunburnt and just uncomfortable there are a few things you can do at home to try to stay as comfortable as possible.

  • Soak your feet in cool water.
  • Apply Aloe Vera gel. This gel can be purchased over the counter at any pharmacy.
  • When you are home limit sock use. By limiting the time you wear socks it will allow your feet to breathe.
  • Avoid soap on the sunburn.
  • Witch Hazel works on many people’s sunburns.
  • Adding one cup of vinegar in a foot soak also helps.
  • Do not rub or scratch the areas that have the sunburn. Rubbing will increase the damage to the skin.
  • Watch for signs of infection. If you suspect that you may have an infection starting be sure to get in touch with your podiatrist ASAP.

Be Wise and No Sunburnt Feet

Of course, it is wise to remember to put sunscreen on your feet. Another thing to remember is to put sunscreen on your feet even when wearing sandals or flip-flops. For the best protection from the sun begin putting your sunscreen on 30 minutes before going out into the sun.

When choosing sunscreen, look for SPF 30 so that your feet will be safe. Do you know it can take up to 6 months for your skin to return to normal after a sunburn? The new skin under where the burned skin peels is super sensitive, so treat it kindly.

Summer Foot Care for Healthy Feet

Beach

Summer Foot Care

One of the best things about the summer and warm weather is that you can have your feet out of the boots and feeling the warm air. Shoe-free time with your feet in the sand and grass gives us a feeling of freedom and contentment. But, one must take care of the feet while they are out enjoying the warmth and fresh air.

Taking care of your feet in the summer is very important. Even if you are just out soaking in the sun, your feet can become severely burned. That fancy hotel you may be staying at for summer break? The shower may be great, but the athlete’s foot that is lurking will not be kind to your feet. As a matter of fact, athlete’s foot can be hanging out in all kinds of public places.

Wouldn’t you rather be outside enjoying the beautiful weather instead of having to visit the foot doctor? Here are a few basic tips to remember when you and your feet are enjoying the weather.

  1. Remember to apply sunscreen to your feet. Be sure to apply the sunscreen to the top and sides of your feet. If you have been in the water make sure that you reapply the sunscreen.
  2. Where flip flops or other protective footwear when you are walking around in public areas. Wear flip flops in the showers and the bathroom areas. Protecting your feet from athlete’s foot, plantar warts, ringworm and other infections is important.
  3. Different activities, while you are out, may require different footwear. Make sure you are wearing the appropriate shoes for the activity that you are doing.
  4. Drink plenty of water when you are out in the hot weather. Water is great for overall health and will help minimize any swelling in your legs and feet.
  5. If you injure your foot while you are out, then you will need to contact your podiatric physician. Do not let foot injuries go for too long without having it looked at by the physician.

Warm Weather Foot Gear

  • Always have flip flops available for visits to the pool, hotel rooms, and the spa.
  • Antibiotic Cream- for minor skin injuries
  • Band-Aids and Sterile Bandages- For scrapes and cuts
  • Emollient Creams- to keep feet hydrated
  • Advil or Motrin- to reduce pain and swelling of feet
  • Sunscreen- to protect feet from painful sunburn
  • Aloe Vera- for sunburned feet
  • Blister Pads- to protect against blisters
  • Clippers- to keep toenails trimmed
  • Emery Boards- to file the sharp edges of the toenails
  • Pumice Stone- to help with callused skin

If you have injured your foot and thought, you may have a sprain or worse a break you will need to see your foot doctor. Most people will call their regular doctor or go to the local emergency room. By contacting your foot doctor, you will be treated by the foot professional. Never let a foot injury go unchecked. If you break a bone in your foot and do not get it checked by the physician, you will have more problems later on. A simple x-ray will let you and your doctor know if you have a broken bone in your foot.

Have questions concerning your foot health? Contact Quality Foot Care by calling (215) 230-9707.

Pedicures- Are They Safe?

Pedicure Completed

Spring is here and after the long winter we are ready to shake off the heavy socks and boots. Now that we are going to be showing off the feet it is time for a pedicure. Are pedicures safe? Is there the danger of getting an infection? There are precautions that you can take to keep your feet safe and looking great.

Disinfection Techniques at Nail Spas

Most nail salons will use a disinfecting solution, and there should be about 10 minutes in between each person in the chair. Some salons may be using UV lights to sanitize the tools, the problem with using UV lights to sanitize is that it is supposed to be a six-hour process. Unfortunately, there are nail salons that will pop the tools into the machine for a few minutes and then pull them back out. Do not be shy about asking about the sanitation techniques used, your health depends on it.

Do Not Shave Your Legs Before Pedicure

Although this seems a bit backwards because we are going to have nice feet and prickly legs but shaving your legs before a pedicure is a no-no. The reason for not shaving your legs right before a pedicure is to protect yourself from getting an infection. If you accidently nick your leg, you are opening up the pathway for the germs to enter your body. It is best to hold off on the shaving until after the pedicure.

Bring Your Pedicure Tools

The trend of bringing your own pedicure tools is finally catching on. You are able to clean and disinfect your tools and know for sure they have only been used on your feet. The pedicure tools that you will want to be bringing should include nail files, orange sticks, nail buffers and foot files. Be sure to watch and make sure that the only tools being used on your feet are yours. Once your pedicure is finished, you can take your tools home and disinfect them.

Cutting Straight is Great

Let the pedicurist know that you want your toenails cut straight across. Toenails that are cut with the edges rounded can lead to ingrown nails. Ingrown nails can be very painful and will earn you a visit with your foot specialist. Before the pedicure even begins let the technician know exactly how you want your nails cut. If you are already having issues with ingrown toenails, it is best to see your podiatrist and not get the pedicure.

Cuticles- To Push Back or Not?

The cuticle is what protects the nail and should not be pushed back. By having the cuticles clipped and pushed back the risk of infection increases. It is important to not harm the cuticles in any way including buffing the nails too hard.

Not Sure of the Salon? See Your Podiatrist

If you are uneasy about going to the salon for a pedicure, you are not alone. Remember, you can always see your podiatrist. The podiatrist office may not feel like a salon, but you will have less worries.

 

 

 

 

 

Foot Safety on Ice and Snow

Foot Safety on Snow and IceWelcome to the winter that does not want to give up. It has recently been reported that 94 million Americans have had enough of this winter. For many of us the thought of warm weather makes us smile, but in the meantime we have to be sure that there are no falls and we stay upright. Walking on snow and ice can be tricky and even when taking our time there can be slipping and sliding. Falling is one of the major injuries reported in the winter and with the added snow and ice this year the injuries are rising.

Tips for Foot Safety on Snow and Ice

  1. Remain Vigilant– Although pavement that has been cleaned off may look like it is safe be cautious. Consider all areas that are wet to be a slipping hazard. There may be a thin sheet of ice that you do not see and when you start to slip it is hard to catch yourself.
  2. The Penguin Walk– Sounds funny, but it really does work! By pointing your feet out slightly and walking you are changing your center of gravity. Bending slightly at the knees and walking like a penguin will get you across any icy areas safer.
  3. Take Your Time– It seems we are always in a hurry and trying to multitask, now is the time to slow down a bit. How many times have you left a building and while walking across a parking lot you are fishing the keys out of your bag? This is where slips and falls can happen because your attention is not on the ice and snow that is under your feet. Foot safety on ice and snow is much better when you are concentrating on just the walking.
  4. Leaving a Vehicle– Be careful when stepping out of vehicles and use the vehicle for support.
  5. Where to Walk– When entering a building be sure to walk only in the areas that have been cleaned. Follow the path or walkway where there has been salt put down.
  6. Where Appropriate Shoes– Do not wear any type of shoe that has a smooth bottom. Try to wear boots and shoes that have raised patterns or large treads. If you have to wear dress shoes for work just put them in a bag and change once you are in the safety of the building. For extra grip, there are traction devices that can be purchased and attached to your shoes. There are also boots available with cleats for better traction while on the snow and ice.
  7. Outside Stairways– Always hold onto the handrail even if you have been up and down the same stairs a million times.
  8. Melting Ice and Snow– When the temperature goes above freezing watch for water on top of the ice and snow. The melting can cover the ice that is still present and may not be seen in time.

There will just be times when a slip on the ice is something that you did not see coming. If you do slip and hurt your foot or ankle then it is best to have it checked by your local foot specialist. The longer you let the injury go unattended means the more damage that can happen.

Caring For Your Feet In Winter

Caring for your feet in winter

Your feet need some extra loving care as they are in everything from fuzzy socks to boots in the wintertime. Although your feet are almost always covered in the cold winter months, there are a few things you should be doing to help care for your feet in winter.

Whether you are sliding along on the ice or trudging through the deep snow and cold temperatures, it’s important to take care of your feet through the winter months. You will want to have your feet happy and healthy for when spring gets here.

Here is an interesting statistic, most Americans will have walked over 75,000 miles by the time they reach the age of 50. Is it any wonder that the complaint of foot pain is so common? Foot pain can affect your daily activities and make even performing the littlest of tasks painful. It is important to take proper care of your feet through all of the seasons whether it is warm or cold.

Feet In Winter- Keep Them Healthy and Safe

  • Winter has its sports including snowboarding and skiing. When skiing or snowboarding always wear the appropriate footwear to protect your feet from injury. Be sure that your boots fit properly and that you can wiggle your toes.
  • If you are an avid runner, you do not have to let the cold weather stop you. Finding the right attire to wear while running in the cold months has never been easier. Sporting goods stores carry a large assortment of active wear that is moisture-wicking that will keep you warm and dry. Word of warning, some runners will compensate for snowy or icy conditions by changing how their feet strike the ground. Instead of changing the way your foot strikes the ground try to shorten your stride to help maintain balance. Always remember to stretch before running in the cold weather. Winter weather can make your muscles less flexible than they are in the summer months.
  • If you are walking in the snow and ice then you will be wearing winter boots. Winter boots and nice toasty socks will keep your feet warm. Feet that are in winter boots for an extended amount of time may tend to sweat. Wet feet are a great place for bacteria to grow so you will want to be sure to change your socks often. Putting foot powder inside of your boots will help to absorb the sweat. Adding foot baths to your winter skin care regime will also help to keep your feet healthier.
  • Buy the right size boots. When buying boots for children do not be tempted to buy winter boots that are sizes too big. It is okay to have a little extra wiggle room in the boots for the thicker socks, but not so big that it interferes with the child’s walking. Wearing properly fitted boots help to protect the feet from blisters, chafing and ankle injuries.
  • The common sense rule. If you see ice and snow on the ground then it isn’t the time to be wearing your summer foot attire. Wearing summer attire in the winter will only expose your feet to frostbite and injury.

Concerns about caring for your feet in winter? Be sure to contact Quality Foot Care, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

How To Keep Those Feet Smelling Sweet

Feet

Have you ever had a pair of shoes on and then you take them off to realize that weird smell is actually coming from your feet? No worries, it happens to the best of us, and there are ways to avoid that stinky feet syndrome.

Your Marvelous Feet

Our feet do a lot for us and we tend to forget about them. We tend to forget about them until they are hurting and/or giving off a foul odor. The human foot is made up of 100+ tendons, 26 bones, and 250,000 sweat glands. With all of those sweat glands is it any wonder that they may give off an odor once in a while?

Our feet have the important job of keeping us upright and have to handle all of our body weight. These same feet can be injured easily, and it is important for us to take care of them. Are your feet sweaty and giving off a foul odor? It is not the actual sweat that causes your feet to give off that smell, it actually bacteria. This same bacteria loves dark and damp places and your feet in shoes are perfect.

Avoiding Smelly Feet

At some point in time all of our feet will get sweaty and give off oder. Let’s have a look at a few simple ways to reduce the foot order.

  • Odor neutralizing insoles that can be found in many shoe stores. These insoles fit right into the bottom of your shoe and can actually make them more comfortable. These insoles are not too expensive and will give you extra protection from the foot smell.
  • Wear socks with shoes. Seems simple right? Many people will just slip their shoes on with no socks and cannot understand why their feet are sweating. If your feet cannot “breathe”, they are going to sweat. If your feet sweat and there is nothing there to absorb the sweat, the bacteria growth begins.
  • Wash feet daily. If your feet tend to sweat more than usual then you may want to wash them twice a day.
  • Avoid plastic shoes at all costs if you have trouble with foot order.
  • Nylon socks should not be worn.
  • Change socks and shoes a couple times a day. The more you change your socks and shoes the less your feet will sweat.
  • Sprinkle nonmedicated baby powder on your feet.
  • Weat thick absorbent socks that wick away moisture from your feet. Cotton is a good choice for absorbent socks.
  • If you exercise and use athletic shoes then be sure to alternate shoes. The every other day rule will help to reduce sweating and bacteria growing inside the athletic shoe.

My Feet Still Smell

If you have tried all of the above and you are still having a problem with foot odor then it is time to contact Quality Foot Care. Dr. Ken Lefkowitz is the leading Doylestown, PA foot specialist .

The Best Party Shoes for Your Feet

The best party shoes for your feet

The Best Holiday Party Shoes

Yes, the holidays are upon us, and the fun begins. There is gift shopping and those holiday parties that we must attend. Although this is a great time of year, it can make our feet not like us very much. Hours of walking trying to find the perfect gift and then getting dressed up for those parties’ makes our feet ache.

Best Type of Shoes for Achy Holiday Feet

Now comes getting dressed for your holiday parties and not only do you want to be presentable, you want to be comfortable. As you stand there and stare at your assortment of shoes, you are thinking you just want to be comfortable. Of course, wearing those flip-flops are totally out. So, let’s discuss what type of shoes will not only keep you comfortable but will look great too.

For those who love the feel of boots, the newest and most stylish boots known as the classic riding boots are in. The riding boot comes in many styles and has a low heel with the perfect balance of arch support. The riding boot can be worn with pretty much anything including jeans and skirts. If you are one to suffer from foot pain when wearing dress shoes, then the riding boots are a must have to add to your wardrobe.

Riding boots vary in price from inexpensive to the very expensive. You know what your budget can afford and choosing wisely will save your feet a lot of aching in the end.

The Loved Flats

Time after time when we are looking for the perfect shoes to wear to an occasion we want those flats. The problem with flats is that they can cause blisters and make feet problems worse. There are flats available out there that are comfortable. When trying to find the perfect flats to compliment your outfit be sure to take your time and try them on. There is nothing worse than buying a pair of flats, and as you are wearing them your feet are blistering and it hurts to move your toes. Hurting feet with blisters and feet with lumps and bumps is not what you are trying to achieve. Be sure there is some support and an arch to help keep your feet comfortable.

The Dress Heels

If you cannot find anything that will go with your outfit except for dress heels then, you can still pull the look off and be comfortable. Choose dress shoes with heels that have a smaller heel to them. Dress shoes with a heel of less than three inches will keep you from damaging your feet and keeping you comfortable at the same time. For those who are searching for the perfect dress heels, the best shoes to search are known as kitten heels.

If you are experiencing foot pain and changing the types of shoes you are wearing is not bringing relief than it may be wise to contact Quality Foot Care.