Items filtered by date: January 2019

Wednesday, 30 January 2019 19:25

Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a connective tissue in the heel that stretches across the bottom length of your foot. Plantar fasciitis occurs when the connective tissue becomes inflamed, causing heel pain and discomfort during physical activity. Although the condition is completely treatable, traditional methods can take up to a year to start becoming effective.

Plantar fasciitis is caused by a number of everyday activities, so understanding the condition is important for managing and treating it. One of the most common causes of plantar fasciitis is excessive running, especially with improper fitting or non-supportive shoes. Too much exercise can lead to the plantar fascia being overworked and overstretched, which can cause tears in the tissue. Along with improper fitting shoes, pronation, the rolling of the feet inward, is a common cause of plantar fasciitis. If not treated properly, the plantar fascia becomes overstretched and starts to tear, causing inflammation.

Despite the common causes of plantar fasciitis, there are many different treatment options. For less severe cases, conservative home remedies include taking anti-inflammatory drugs to alleviate pain, applying ice packs to the bottom of your foot and heel, slowly stretching and exercising your feet to re-strengthen the tissue, and using orthotic devices are all ways to help manage your plantar fasciitis.

For more severe cases, shockwave therapy has become a common solution for plantar fasciitis. Shockwave therapy can effectively break up the tissue on the bottom of your foot which facilitates healing and regeneration. This fights the chronic pain caused by plantar fasciitis. Even if this doesn’t work, surgery is always a final option. Surgery on the tissue itself can be done to permanently correct the issue and stop the inflammation and pain in your heels.

No matter what the case may be, consulting your podiatrist is the first and best step to recovery. Even the slightest amount of heel pain could be the first stage of plantar fasciitis. Untreated symptoms can lead to the tearing and overstretching of tissue. Because the tearing of tissue can be compounded if it remains ignored, it can evolve into a severe case. The solution is early detection and early treatment. Talk to your podiatrist about the possibilities of plantar fasciitis if you’re experiencing heel pain.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019 19:22

How to Have Healthy Feet

January is a good time for starting new habits, and we at Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center would like to urge patients to make this the year that you commit to better care of your feet. We believe in educating our patients to be proactive about the health of their feet. There are many ways that you can reduce your risk of injury and foot disorders and improve your podiatric health. Below are some suggestions:

  • Wash your feet every day with mild soap and warm water. Dry them thoroughly, with particular attention to the area between the toes. This will significantly reduce the risk of athlete’s foot.
  • Don’t walk barefoot. Out in public, walking without shoes increase your risk of coming in contact with a fungal infection. Even at home, you can protect your feet from stepping on sharp objects by keeping them covered.
  • Get in the habit of inspecting your feet on a regular basis. The best outcomes for foot disorders occur when they are treated in their earliest stages. Being vigilant about reporting changes in skin or nail color, swelling, bumps or growths, bruising and cuts that don’t seem to be healing to our podiatrists, Victoria Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas, can save you from prolonged and invasive treatments.
  • Making wise shoe choices. Did you know that the single most significant step you can take to improve the health of your feet is choosing good shoes? Styles with roomy toe boxes that don’t constrict your toes, adequate arch support and laces for a firm fit can reduce the risk of falls, joint conditions, and toe deformities. In addition, getting away from wearing high heels can prevent neuromas and lessen the chances of bunions and several other podiatric problems.
  • Apply sunscreen, not just on beach days but any days when the bare skin of your feet will be exposed in open sandals or shoes to the sun. The skin on your feet is just as susceptible to skin cancer as the skin on the rest of your body.
  • Take care of toenails. Keep your nails trimmed straight across and not too short to prevent ingrown toenails from developing.

Better foot care needn’t be complicated or time-consuming. A few simple changes in your daily regimen can make a world of difference. If you have questions regarding the care of your feet, contact our Long Beach office today by calling: (562) 420-9800.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019 19:21

4 Signs Your Child May Have a Foot Disorder

At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center, we treat patients of all ages. Some of our younger patients are not very articulate about foot and ankle pain or discomfort. Children may know that it doesn’t feel good to run but not be able to specifically say that it feels like a rock is pressing into the ball of their foot or that their toenail is sore. That’s when parents have to do a little detective work. See if you notice one or more of these signs that your child may be experiencing a podiatric problem:

  1. A loss of interest in games and physical activities they normally love. A usually active child who chooses to sit on the sidelines or complains that they feel too tired to play may be masking the fact that his or her feet hurt.
  2. Your child is always last. Being unable to keep up with their peers in simple outdoor play or more formal sports settings can indicate an improperly functioning foot.
  3. He’s “running in a funny way.” If you notice your child’s gait has changed, it may be a sign that they are altering the way they move to avoid pain or discomfort. This will often lead to balance issues and an increase in trips and falls.
  4. Limping or walking on tiptoes. Younger children may be afraid to go to the doctor or not want to take time out from playing, so they keep going, but a change is evident in how they walk and run. That’s when it’s time to examine your child’s feet and see if there are cuts, bruises, swelling, or other potential sources of foot pain. Ingrown toenails, which are particularly common in children, can quickly become swollen and painful but would not be noticeable unless you inspect your child’s feet. Checking children’s feet regularly is a good way to help detect podiatric issues in their earliest stages. If you notice anything unusual, be sure to report it to our podiatrists, Victoria Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas, so they can diagnose your child’s condition promptly and prescribe the correct treatment. Contact our Long Beach office for an appointment by calling: (562) 420-9800.
Tuesday, 08 January 2019 19:19

Resolve to Get in Shape—Safely

Is starting a new fitness plan one of your New Year’s resolutions? At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we applaud this initiative, but also add a word of caution. We see too many patients who fail to take the necessary steps to ensure that their new fitness plan is safe. Prevent injuries and get your healthy resolution off to a smart start by taking into consideration the following.

Your Current Condition—do you suffer from any chronic foot or ankle disorders such as flat feet, plantar fasciitis or hammertoes? Our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas, can help you determine the best type of exercise and footwear to accommodate an existing podiatric condition. In some cases, special padding or even a custom orthotic device may be prescribed to make exercise more comfortable.

Long-term Goals—in order to determine the type of exercise to do, you need to know what your goals are. Do you want to lose weight? Have more strength and endurance? Improve flexibility and balance? Your general physician and exercise professionals can help match your goals to fitness activities and sports that will best achieve them.

Gear—in our opinion, your footwear is the most important piece of equipment for a new fitness program. Be sure that you get the right shoes for your sport and that they fit properly. If the foot doctor has recommended an orthotic, be sure it fits in your sports shoes. Look for socks that are not too bulky and ones that wick moisture away from your skin to prevent athlete’s foot and fungal infections.

Now you’re ready to begin. Start slow and gradually increase the degree of difficulty of your work out. If your feet or ankles hurt from your new exercise plan, contact our Long Beach office for an appointment by calling: (562) 420-9800.

Wednesday, 02 January 2019 19:14

Arthritis Comes in Many Forms

Arthritis is a term that is used to describe over 100 different joint conditions. At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we think it’s important for our patients to be informed about arthritic conditions—especially since each of your feet has 33 joints that need to be protected for your foot to function properly.

Although different types of arthritis may have different causes and manifestations, there are some common characteristics. These include:

  • Joint pain
  • Swelling
  • Stiffness
  • Limited range of motion
  • Redness or heat in a joint

Some of the more common types of arthritis include:

Osteoarthritis—this is the best-known type of arthritis. Also known as “wear and tear” arthritis, it occurs over time as cartilage breaks down with age and use. Osteoarthritis usually comes on gradually and gets worse over time. Being overweight can exacerbate osteoarthritis because of the excess pressure on the joints caused by carrying extra weight.

Rheumatoid arthritis—although rheumatoid arthritis shares the symptom of joint pain with other forms of arthritis, this form of the disease is far more serious in that it is part of a chronic inflammatory system of diseases that can affect various systems of the body including lungs, heart, eyes and nervous system.

Traumatic arthritis—an injury or trauma to a joint such as a bad sprain, fracture or being hit with a heavy object can damage cartilage and lead to arthritis.

Gout—this form of arthritis occurs when uric acid builds up in the joint and then crystallizes, causing severe pain, inflammation and swelling. Gout most often affects the big toe joint and can be triggered by certain foods, such as shellfish, red meat, organ meats, red wine, brandy, and other alcoholic beverages.

Psoriatic arthritis—in some people with the skin condition of psoriasis a form of arthritis may develop as well. Arthritis may be mild and tends to get worse when the skin condition worsens.

With any form of arthritis, early detection and treatment is key to slowing the progression of the disease and managing the symptoms. If you have any signs of joint disease, it’s important that you contact our Long Beach office (562-420-9800­) as soon as possible so that one of our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas can determine the source of your joint discomfort along with the appropriate treatment.

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