foot care

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.

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.

 

 

 

 

 

What is Athlete’s Foot?

 

 

Athlete’s foot will usually begin as a rash that can cause intense itching. Athlete’s foot is also known as tinea pedis and usually starts between the toes. Athlete’s foot will usually strike those people who wear tight-fitting shoes and have feet that sweat. The more your feet sweat the worse the symptoms seem to be.

Signs of Athlete’s Foot

Most common signs of athlete’s foot are itching, burning and stinging. Athlete’s foot is also very contagious and can be picked up from floors, towels and showers. Anywhere that a person has walked barefoot that has athlete’s foot will be contaminated.

Athlete’s foot is related to a few other fungal infections including jock itch and ringworm. Athlete’s foot can be treated with over-the-counter antifungal medications. If you find that the over-the-counter antifungal medications are not working it is time to see your foot specialist. There are medications available that can be prescribed and will reduce the discomfort quickly. Athlete’s foot can cause your feet to hurt and bleed if it is not taken care of.

You may notice that athlete’s foot can become worse at night after taking your shoes and socks off. Some forms of athlete’s foot can become so severe that it will cause blisters and open sores. If you have blisters try not to scratch them and open them up. If you do touch your blisters or feet be sure to wash your hands right away. Athlete’s foot can spread to your hands.

Time to see your Foot Specialist

If you suspect you have athlete’s foot and you have diabetes then you need to see your foot specialist right away. If you notice swelling, redness and have a fever then put a call into your podiatrist. There is no need having to suffer when your doctor is a phone call away.

What Causes Athlete’s Foot

Caused by the same organisms as jock itch and ringworm, athlete’s foot thrives in damp places that are warm. Try to wear shoes that allow the feet to breath at all times. Try to wear white cotton socks over those that are heavier and do not allow your feet to breath.

Avoiding Athlete’s Foot

  • Wear shoes that allow your feet to breath.
  • Do not share mats, bed linens, towels, socks or shoes with someone who has athlete’s foot.
  • Do not walk barefoot in public areas including public showers. Wear flip-flops to protect your feet when in public areas.

Athlete’s foot that is not taken care of can spread to other parts of your body including your nails, your hands and your groin area.

What to Expect From Your Foot Doctor

Your foot doctor will examine your feet. You will be asked when this rash started. Does any other family member have athlete’s foot? Have you been in public showers, swimming pools or other areas where athlete’s foot may have spread?

If you have questions about athlete’s foot be sure to ask your doctor. The better informed you are the less chance of contracting this type of rash again.

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.

Diabetes and your Feet

Close-up Of Bare FeetDiabetes can have numerous effects on your feet. One of the first things that may happen is that you begin to lose sensation, usually starting at the toes. What this is called is peripheral neuropathy.

It is important to remember that when you are purchasing new shoes that they fit properly. If you are unsure of your exact shoe size, then you can have your feet measured.

The chances of experiencing neuropathy in your feet is directly correlated to the number of years you have diabetes. Research shows that one in three people with diabetes will have some loss of feeling in their feet. When neuropathy does begin to happen, it usually starts slow. Many people are actually not aware of the neuropathy in their feet when it begins. Peripheral neuropathy will often occur 7 to 10 years after you have been diagnosed with diabetes. For those who have had trouble controlling their blood sugar, the onset of neuropathy may begin sooner.

If you have lost feeling in your feet then it possible that you may injure your feet without knowing. The problem is that you may step on sharp objects like a screw or nail, piercing the skin so badly that it may even go down to the bone. If the wound is not noticed and treated immediately this, could lead to serious problems and could lead to amputation.

It is extremely important that you perform a daily inspection of your feet. Certain precautions should also be taken such as not walking where there are sharp objects and not walking barefoot.

Periodically this loss of sensation can cause a burning feeling in your feet. This burning feeling can become quite severe and often gets worse at night. This burning feeling is what is known as painful peripheral neuropathy. If you are experiencing these symptoms it, is important to consult your Podiatrist or diabetic clinic. It may be possible to alleviate these symptoms.

It is important to understand that diabetes can also affect the blood supply to your feet. A reduction in the blood supply to your feet can cause healing issues and make your feet more vulnerable to infections. It is important to have your feet regularly checked by your foot specialist.

Contact your podiatrist right away if experience any of the following:

  • New swelling in your feet
  • Your skin color changes. If you see that your feet/foot are becoming redder, bluer, or there are black areas.
  • Any type of break in the skin or discharge coming from your feet.

If you suddenly experience pain in a foot, that feels warm to the touch and the same area on the other foot, does not feel as warm, you need to see your podiatrist right away. Until you see your foot specialist it, is advisable to stay off of your feet as much as possible.

With due diligence and a few precautions, you can help to keep your feet as healthy as possible. Communicating with your doctors will contribute to avoiding any serious issues that may arise concerning diabetes and your feet.

Aching Feet- How Can I Get This Pain To Go Away?

Achy feet

Achy feet can cause distress and discomfort.

Do your feet ache? Are there times when you just have to get off your feet because you are in agony? You are not alone. There are many factors that can contribute to sore feet. Let’s have a look at the most common reasons for aching feet.

  1. Wearing shoes that do not fit right. Shoes with a sole that is too thin can cause your feet to hurt and ache because there is no support. If your feet ache then be sure to purchase well fitting shoes with a good sole and arch support.
  2. Being pregnant. Not only will the extra weight make your feet ache, the hormonal change causes ligaments to relax. The ligaments in your feet are relaxing and this will cause feet to ache. You may have to take more breaks and put your feet up if you are pregnant and your feet are hurting.
  3. Being Overweight. Extra weight is causing the joints, ligaments and muscles in your feet to work harder.
  4. Foot injury. The deep bruise that happens with impact injury or stepping on a hard object. This is also known as a stone bruise.
  5. Overworking your feet. This is for those who work 8+ hours standing and those who exercise a lot. If your feet are giving you a problem it may be time to look into the shoes you are wearing and seeing your local foot doctor.

What You Can Do At Home For Achy Feet

There are things that you can do at home to help with those tired feet. Here are a few suggestions.

  1. Get off of your feet and elevate them.
  2. Soak your feet in warm water. Epsom salt can also be added to the warm water. Adding 1-2 tablespoons per gallon of water will also help. Soak feet for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Massage your feet with lotion or oil. Be sure to gently apply pressure to the sore areas of your feet.
  4. Arch supports that can be bought at most stores can often give relief for achy feet.
  5. Invest in a good pair of shoes. If you have recently started exercising it is time to purchase well fitting athletic sneakers.

It is important to note that there are medical conditions that can cause your feet to ache. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, arthritis or cardiac disease it is important to consult with your doctor for the best treatment.

Everyday Wear and Tear

There will be days when your feet will hurt, it is just a part of life. We all get achy feet and it does not matter if you are young or old. If you know you have been on your feet too long, it is time for a break. If your feet continue to hurt and ache even after resting them, it is time to get quality foot care from a podiatrist.

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 .

Summer Is Coming: What You Should Know About Your Foot Care

feet at the beach

By Dr. Ken Lefkowitz

Summer is only a month away, and most people are planning beach trips and backyard barbecues. Your feet are probably the last thing on your mind, but during the summertime they need more attention than ever. Listen to these helpful tips to maintain foot health during the warmer months.

Have you ever had sunburn on your feet? It’s a very unpleasant feeling when you have to put shoes and socks on over burnt skin. When applying sunscreen, never forget your feet. Pay special attention to the tops and fronts of your ankles, and always reapply after taking a dip in the pool. Another pool procedure you should always remember is to wear sandals poolside and in any locker rooms or bathrooms. This will limit the likelihood of contracting a bacterial, fungal and viral infections. Athlete’s foot and other fungi grow easily in warm, damp areas, and with all the other people walking around barefoot, do not risk going without shoes yourself.

Your best foot health weapons during the summer are sandals and sunscreen, but here are some other things to keep on hand:

  • Emollient enriched cream, which hydrates the feet
  • A pumice stone to soften callused skin
  • Sterile bandages to protect  minor cuts and scrapes from exposure

And, of course, always have toenail clippers and an emery board to smooth rough edges and broken nails.

If your feet aren’t looking or feeling ready for summer, call Quality Foot Care at 215-230-9707. A visit to our Doylestown office will have them looking better in no time!

Foot Care 101: A Guide to Home Care

By Dr Ken Lefkowitz

Executing proper home care is the best thing you can do for your feet in the time between your visits to a #podiatrist. It is important that you take the time every day to pay special attention to your feet. Many people forget how necessary the feet are to everything we do, and they won’t become any healthier as we age. Home care can prevent the years of wear and tear on your feet from affecting the quality of life in your later years.

One beneficial routine that is easy to begin including every day is washing your feet with mild soap and warm water. Following this, you should always completely dry your feet with a soft towel. Make sure you dry in between the toes, because many people forget to do this, opening the door to a fungal infection. You should remember to moisturize the heel, top, sides, and bottoms of your feet, but never in between the toes. After washing and moisturizing your feet, you should put on clean socks that wick away moisture.

You should inspect your feet every single day to monitor for things such as swelling, redness, cracks, red streaks, pale or blue skin, open sores, or sensations that you don’t normally experience. These could be the tell-tale signs of infection, nerve damage, and/or poor circulation. If you notice any of these things, you must see a podiatrist at once (especially if you are diabetic). Also look out for ingrown toenails, corns, calluses, and fungus to have them treated by your podiatrist. Seeking treatment can avoid permanent damage to your feet.

If you have home care questions or would like to receive the area’s top treatment for some of the aforementioned concerns and conditions, visit us at our Doylestown office, Quality Foot Care. Call 215-230-9707 to make an appointment and learn the daily foot care routines that can ensure the lifelong health of your feet.