Displaying items by tag: Footwear

Friday, 05 March 2021 15:05

Focus on Female Foot Health

March is Women’s History Month. At Superior Foot & Ankle Center we thought we’d help celebrate our Los Angeles County women by providing tips on taking good care of their feet.

Bunion Prevention

Although men can also get bunions, it is a deformity that plagues women more frequently and this is due in part to shoes. High heels that force the foot forward exerting excess pressure on the toes and styles with narrow, pointy toe boxes are a contributing factor in the development and progression of bunions. In some cases, the tendency for the toe joint to move out of place is genetic. There are exercises that can be done to strengthen toes and feet and help prevent bunions. The podiatrist may also recommend a custom orthotic device to realign the foot properly and relieve pressure on the toes. If you notice your toe moving out of place, even slightly, it’s important that you make an appointment at our Long Beach office by calling (562) 420-9800. The earlier our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria M. Foley and Dr. Constance Ornelas, are able to diagnose a bunion the greater chances of being able to slow its progression.

Importance of Good Footwear

Well-made footwear for women is important for other reasons beyond bunion prevention. It’s essential that your shoes have good arch support (often lacking in fashion boots and some other styles) in order to avoid heel pain. On average, women walk 3 miles more a day than men, and a cushioned insole can greatly increase comfort. A less positive statistic: it’s estimated that up to 90% of women are wearing shoes that are too small for their feet. Get your feet professionally measured when buying new shoes and understand that your foot size can change over time.

As You Age

It’s natural as you get older for your feet so show some signs of “wear and tear.”  However, that does not mean that foot pain is “normal” as a senior. Fat pads on the soles and heels may deteriorate requiring you to add some gel or other padding to your shoes. Be on the lookout for stiffness in joints that may signal arthritis. It’s important to maintain a regular exercise routine and not to sit with your legs crossed for long periods of time to encourage good circulation. You may also notice symptoms in your feet that point to other, more serious systemic conditions such as diabetes or arterial disease. Alert your podiatrist to unusual symptoms such as loss of hair on your legs or toes, cold feet, or decreased sensation in your feet.

Healthy feet help successful women get where they want to go! If you have questions or concerns about your feet, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Published in Women Foot Health

When it comes to running or walking for exercise, we at Superior Foot & Ankle Center believe that the most important piece of equipment required is a good shoe that is properly fitted for your individual foot. You do not need different shoes for running and walking. Running shoes usually have more shock absorption and are fine for walking.

Below are some tips to help you choose the right shoe and get a good fit:

  • Start with an appointment with one of our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley or Dr. Constance Ornelas. The right shoe for you will depend on your foot type. If you have a high arch or you wear a custom orthotic device, a cushioned neutral shoe is best. For someone with flat feet, a stability shoe is recommended. See our approved shoe list for specific brands and styles. Your foot doctor can make suggestions for particular styles or features if you have a toe deformity or other foot or ankle condition that will help protect the area and make running or walking more comfortable.
  • Get professionally fitted by a sports shoe expert. Most people have two different size feet. It’s essential to buy shoes to accommodate the larger foot. There should be a half-inch of space between your longest toe and the front of your shoe. A majority of people wear shoes that are too small for their feet and this leads to injury and deformity.
  • Wear the socks you will run or walk in when you go to try on shoes. We recommend a cotton blend or a sock with CoolMax. Bleach white socks to prevent athlete’s foot.
  • To avoid blisters, be sure that the heel of the shoe fits snugly and that the foot doesn’t slip when you walk. Also, run your hand around the inside of the shoe to check for rough stitching or bumps that can cause friction and result in a blister.
  • Take your time when trying on shoes. Walk around the store for several minutes. Many running shoe stores will have a treadmill so that you can try running in the shoes as well.
  • Remember to replace running/walking shoes after approximately 400 miles. Even good shoes lose their supportiveness once they are worn out and wearing them can present an increased risk of injury.

If you have more questions about running or walking and your feet, contact our Long Beach office by calling us at 562-420-9800.

Published in Foot Care
Friday, 20 May 2016 10:37

Protect Your Feet While Playing Sports

How To Protect Your Feet While Playing Sports

Anyone who has played sports knows just how strenuous it can be on your feet. Think of all the skilled movements you make as an athlete: the swift twists and turns in basketball, the rigorous sprints taken in a football or baseball game, and the hard landings made after a volleyball spike. Regardless of how fit you are, the physical demands of your sport will still leave you stepping off the court or field with sore, tired feet.

Considering the wear and impact a sport can take on your feet, there is always the likelihood of damage or injury. In order to keep yourself in top condition to compete, proper foot care is essential.

Proper Footwear

Footwear appropriately designed for the sport is essential to prevent injury. A common bad habit among pickup players is wearing running shoes or skate shoes, even in a high-impact sport like basketball or volleyball.

Skate shoes are a horrible choice for any non-skating sport: they have extremely flat soles, designed to grip a board as tightly as possible. But for any other sport, you will not have the proper arch support or cushioning required for your movements.

While running shoes are perfectly appropriate for a casual game of football or soccer at the park, they are a poor choice for a sport like basketball. They may have the proper cushioning needed for running down the court, but they do not have a sole designed to grip the court surface when playing defense, increasing the likelihood of slipping. Moreover, they have neither the cushioning nor the ankle support to allow for a safe landing in basketball or indoor volleyball. Even popular low-top basketball shoes like the Kobe series will support your ankles better than a pair of running shoes.

Using either of these shoes improperly will put you at risk for conditions like plantar fasciitis or a serious ankle injury. It may not be possible or practical to have the perfect shoe for every activity, but make sure to choose the safest option available. For example, a basketball shoe would also be appropriate for court or concrete volleyball, since both sports involve quick movements, jumping, and hard landings.

Protecting Against Specific Injuries

If you have had an injury before, you know exactly which parts of your body are weaker and more prone to injury. Consider purchasing a brace or other type of support to protect your vulnerabilities.

General Precautions

  • Take time off from your sport to recover, at least one day a week.
  • Wear the proper equipment, such as pads (neck, shoulder, elbow, chest, knee, and shin), helmets, mouthpieces, face guards, protective cups, shoes, and/or eyewear. It’s worth mentioning that these will not guarantee safety, but they help immensely.
  • Do strength and conditioning before playing. Fatigue is one of the top ten causes of injury.
  • Increase your flexibility by stretching daily, and before and after games as well.
  • Utilize the proper form and technique, for everything from throwing, shooting, kicking, blocking, and footwork.
  • Take breaks in the middle of your game or practice session. This will reduce the chance of injury due to fatigue, as well as heat-induced illness.
  • Play safe. Penalties and regulations in sports exist for a good reason.
  • Do not try to be tough: stop playing if you notice pain.
  • Drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after physical activity. Dehydration can lead to cramping (especially in the legs and feet), severe headaches, and heat injury.
  • Wear light clothing.
  • Wear breathable shoes to prevent foot conditions like toenail fungus.

The Trusted Podiatrist of Athletes

Whether you are a serious competitor on a sports team, or a casual player who loves to play pickup games on the weekend, a dedicated podiatrist who prioritizes your foot health is essential.

If your hobbies have been hard on your feet, schedule a consultation today with esteemed podiatrist Dr. Vikki. Dr. Vikki has a reputation as the trusted choice of Special Olympic athletes, and an outstanding record of patient satisfaction.

For this and all your related foot care concerns, contact the specialists at Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center today.

Published in Health Tips
Thursday, 05 May 2016 10:27

Changing Your Shoes for the New Season

It is very important to have shoes that have just the right amount of arch support, particularly for those who transition into boots during the winter time. Seasonal Footwear all have their own unique support issues. Most boots lack the cushion and support that sneakers have while summer sandals do not provide proper ankle support.

Wearing appropriately-fitted shoes is a key part of keeping your feet healthy and in working order. You need shoes with good arch support and stable shoes, but it can be difficult to find the footwear that provides the best orthopedic fit for your feet. Without proper arch supports you leave yourself open to developing pain in your heels, ankles, knees and even lower back.

Dr. Foley and Dr. Ornelas of Superior Foot & Ankle Center have compiled a list of shoes and shoe retailers that are best suited to prevent a variety of foot-related injuries and issues. This list separates shoes by athletic categories, such as running, cross-training, basketball, hiking and golf. To avoid these problems you should always find shoes that have just the right amount of arch support or else wear orthotic insoles.

Here’s some information about what orthotics are and what different kinds are available.

What are Orthotics?

Orthotics are inserts that correct a number of foot-related problems from flat feet to heal pain. While they do not fix any major biomechanical problems with your feet, they do provide relief for minor aches and pains.

Over the Counter Orthotics

There are a number of different kinds of over-the-counter orthotics that treat minor foot problems and alleviate pain. For example, arch supports can help correct fallen arches or flat feet while gel inserts help relieve foot and heel pain.

Prescription Orthotics

If you find that over-the-counter orthotics are not alleviating your pain, and it is best to consult a foot care professional about getting prescription orthotics. Prescription orthotics are high-quality inserts that address your specific foot care needs. These custom orthotics correct any number of serious foot problems from plantar fasciitis to abnormal motion. In addition, custom orthotics can relieve severe pain in your feet, knees, shins and back. They can even be used to help diabetic treat their painful foot ulcers and calluses. Prescription Orthotics are created by taking a mold or scan of your feet, so you know that your individual foot issues are being addressed.

Other Things You Should Know

You can find orthotics that are designed to fit and work inside high heel shoes.

Because over the counter orthotics can take a while to break in it is best to wear them around the house for a few days before wearing them to work. Many shoe brands come with extra padding and support. For example Cole Haan dress shoes and boots all come with Nike Air inserts.

Over the counter inserts can last anywhere from 3 months to a year, depending upon how much standing and walking you do at your job. For this reason, people with jobs that require a lot of standing and walking such as nurses and waitresses should have a spare pair of inserts just in case.

Now that you know the importance of having proper foot support in all of your shoes no matter what season it is, be sure to use orthotics to correct and prevent pain. If you are experiencing foot pain, no matter how minor, it is important to speak to a foot care professional as soon as possible to discuss ways to correct this issue. If you have any questions about orthotics; please feel free to contact us today to schedule a consultation.

Published in Pain Relief
Thursday, 11 February 2016 09:09

Pregnancy and Foot Health

Many pregnant women complain about foot pain while they are expecting. Foot pain can primarily be caused by weight gain and hormonal changes taking place in the body. By understanding how pregnancy impacts the health of a woman's feet, a pregnant woman can take action to keep her feet as healthy and comfortable as possible.

Because a woman's weight changes during pregnancy, more pressure is brought to bear on both the legs and the feet. This weight shift can cause two major foot problems: over-pronation, also known as flat feet, as well as edema, which is swelling of the feet. Over-pronation occurs when the arch of the foot flattens, causing the foot to roll inwards when the individual is walking, and can aggravate the plantar fascia tissues located along the bottom of the feet. If these tissues become inflamed, a pregnant woman can experience pain in the heel of the foot as well as severe foot pain while walking or standing. Swelling of the feet, or edema, often occurs in the later stages of pregnancy. It is caused by slow circulation and water retention, and may turn the feet a light purple color.

To keep feet in good health and prevent over-pronation, pregnant women should avoid walking barefoot and be sure they are wearing shoes that offer good arch support. A device known as an orthotic can be added to regular footwear in order to provide additional support for the feet during pregnancy. Any expectant mother whose feet hurt should first check to see if the shoes she is wearing are old, worn out and not offering the proper support necessary for distributing the weight of her body during pregnancy.

To treat edema of the feet, a good start is to wear quality footwear which offers support and good circulation. Keep feet elevated whenever possible by using a foot stool while seated. Stay well hydrated by drinking plenty of water to prevent water retention in the feet. Any swelling that occurs in only one foot should be examined as soon as possible by a doctor.

Good foot health during pregnancy can help expectant mothers avoid foot pain that leads to other health problems. Massaging the feet and doing regular gentle exercise like walking aids foot health by contributing to good circulation. Supportive shoes are also a good investment that will support foot health during pregnancy.

Published in Featured

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