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Posts for tag: Diabetes

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
March 20, 2019
Category: skin conditions
Tags: Diabetes   Athlete's Foot  

Xerosis may sound like a rare, tropical foot disease, but relax—it’s just a fancy medical term for extremely dry skin. At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we often find that the dry air of winter and the extra heating of our cars, offices, and homes can leave patients with skin on their feet that’s very dry and flaky. Below are some do’s and don’ts for helping with this problem:

Do: step up your moisturizing routine. Find a thick, rich emollient cream and apply it to your feet multiple times throughout the day if possible. Consider putting on at night and then slipping on a pair of thick socks to help the moisturizer absorb into your skin.

Don’t: take more than one bath or shower on a daily basis.

Do: choose soaps that are not overly drying to your skin. Look for kinds that contain moisturizers or oatmeal which soothes dry skin.

Don’t: use overly hot water when bathing or showering.

Do: use a laundry detergent that is fragrance-free and made for sensitive skin.

Do: contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office immediately if you are diabetic. Diabetes is associated with dysfunction of the sweat and oil glands in your feet, which can make dry skin worse and lead to cracks in the heels. This could provide an entry point for bacteria and cause a serious problem. It’s also a good idea to make an appointment even if you are not diabetic but have had the dry skin for over two weeks without improvement. Skin on your feet that is red, itchy, flaking or oozing could be a sign of athlete’s foot or another bacterial or viral infection. Our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah will want to examine your feet at that point and determine if there is a cause of your dry skin that requires treatment. Contact us by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
March 05, 2019
Category: Nutrition

March is National Nutrition Month, and at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we think this is a great opportunity to inform patients about the important ways that food affects the health of your feet.

Weight Watching

Everyone knows that what and how much you eat determines what you weigh. What you may not realize is the importance of maintaining a healthy weight for your feet. Since your feet carry the weight of your entire body, if you are overweight, you are putting excess strain on your feet. Weighing more than you should can be a risk factor for several foot conditions, including flat feet, plantar fasciitis, metatarsalgia, and sesamoiditis, to name a few. Being overweight increases your chances for systemic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease which can also have a negative impact on the health of your lower extremities.

Inflammation Fighters

Many podiatric conditions have inflammation as a primary symptom. Arthritis, Achilles tendonitis, and plantar fasciitis are examples of painful podiatric disorders brought about by inflammation. Studies have found that certain foods can trigger an inflammatory response in the body. Some of these include fried foods and foods high in sugar. Other foods, like berries, fish high Omega 3 fatty acids, and olive oil, can help suppress or reduce inflammation.

Gout Triggers

Certain foods can bring on a gout attack. Gout is a form of arthritis that most often strikes the big toe joint and is caused by too much uric acid in your body which crystallizes in the joint and results in severe pain. Foods to avoid include red meat, organ meats, beer, brandy, red wine, and shellfish.

The next time you are in for an appointment at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office, ask our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah if you could improve a foot condition you have with modifications to your diet. You can contact us by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
February 06, 2019
Category: Heart Health
Tags: Diabetes   Plantar Fasciitis   orthotic   bunion  

February is National Heart Month. You may be wondering what that’s got to do with your feet, but at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we want our patients to recognize that the health of your heart does affect your feet and vice versa.

Know Your Risk

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women. There are several factors that raise your risk for heart disease—some we can control and others we cannot:

  • Family history of heart disease
  • Being overweight
  • Having diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Poor diet

Take Control

Fortunately, there is much you can do to prevent heart disease and live a long and active life. Start by being proactive and informed about your health. Talk to your physician about your risk factors and know your cholesterol and blood pressure numbers. Then, take steps to reduce your risk and develop a healthier lifestyle. Make small changes over time rather than dramatic ones that will be too difficult to maintain. Some examples:

  • Get moving. Talk to our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah about any recommendations for fitness activities based on your individual feet. If you have a bunion, plantar fasciitis or other chronic foot condition, the podiatrist may recommend a custom orthotic device to make exercise more comfortable.
  • Drink alcohol only in moderation.
  • Reduce stress. Exercise, meditation, seeing friends regularly or spending time doing a hobby or activity you enjoy can all be stress relievers. Make sure to put your stress relievers on your calendar just the same as you do other appointments and events.
  • Make healthy changes in your diet. Reduce portion sizes, substitute fruit, yogurt and healthy snacks for chips, cookies and other less healthy choices.
  • If you have diabetes, follow all of your doctor’s instructions for keeping it under control.
  • If you are a smoker, find a program to help you quit.

Keeping your heart healthy will enable you to stay active and do the things you love. The health of your feet is an integral part of your healthy lifestyle. If you have questions or concerns about podiatric conditions, contact our Monroe, Monmouth Junction or Edison office by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
January 23, 2019
Category: Foot Health
Tags: Diabetes   Ankle Sprains   Bunions   Alcoholism   Shoes  

We’re all familiar with the sensation of “pins and needles” in our feet and it’s not uncommon to have your foot “fall asleep” when you keep it in an unusual position for too long. But, what does it mean if you have this sensation frequently, regardless of the position of your foot? At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we see patients with numbness or tingling in the feet that can come from a number of different sources.

Neuropathy—one of the most common causes of burning, tingly or numbness in the feet is nerve damage, also known as neuropathy. Neuropathy is frequently associated with diabetes but can also be caused by chemotherapy, alcoholism, injuries, and infections.

Footwear—your shoes may be too tight. Did you know that by some estimates 90% of the population is wearing shoes that are too small for their feet? Feet can increase in size as you age. Get your foot professionally measured and look for shoes with roomy toe boxes made out of soft, giving materials. If you feel the tingling sensation on just the top of your foot, try loosening your laces a bit.

Bunions—as the big toe moves out of place and begins to press on the second toe, nerves can get compressed. This pressure then causes the feeling of tingling in your forefoot and toes.

Herniated disc—sometimes, sensations in your feet are caused not by a podiatric problem but rather an issue with your back. A herniated disc could be compressing nerves that run down into your feet. Additional signs that this may be the source of your odd foot sensations would most likely include lower back pain and weakness.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome—you’ve most likely heard of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, which occurs when nerves in your wrist are compressed and irritated. Tarsal Tunnel is similar only it happens when nerves in the tarsal tunnel—located in a space on the inside of your ankle—get compressed. This condition can be associated with an ankle sprain.

Obviously, each of these different causes of numbness or tingling in your feet would require different treatments to correct. If you are experiencing any ongoing unusual sensations in your feet, it’s time to contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction, NJ office for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050. Our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, will conduct a complete examination of your feet and ankles and also order any necessary imaging or lab tests to accurately diagnose the source of your tingling. 

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
January 16, 2019
Category: Diabetic Foot Care

Are you one of 29 million Americans that have diabetes? If so, all of us at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want you to know that you have significant power in controlling this disease and how it affects your feet. Diabetes deals your feet a double blow: first, it can cause neuropathy or nerve damage to the feet which makes it difficult to detect cuts or injuries to the feet. Second, diabetes can impede circulation which restricts the flow of oxygen-rich blood that can speed healing to the extremities.

There are steps you can take, however, to help protect your feet if you have diabetes:

  • Keep your sugar levels under control. Following all your doctor’s instructions for managing your diabetes will lower your risk for complications significantly.
  • Get in the habit of doing self-exams. Check your feet daily for cuts, open sores, blisters, swelling, bruising, changes in skin color or nail condition. Report anything unusual to our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah so that they can examine your feet and adjust your treatment accordingly.
  • Choose shoes wisely. Get your foot professionally measured and choose shoes that have a roomy toe box and are made out of soft, flexible materials. Look over your feet for red marks, blisters or other signs of friction from your footwear.
  • Keep feet dry. Wear socks made of moisture-wicking materials that help feet stay dry. Change socks as soon as your feet feel damp. If you tend to sweat profusely, use an anti-fungal foot powder before putting on socks.
  • Avoid going barefoot. Even at home, bare feet are more likely to sustain a puncture wound or cut from stepping on a sharp object. Your risk for athlete’s foot or fungal infections decreases if you keep your feet covered when walking in public places.
  • Don’t practice “bathroom surgery.” Attempting to remove warts, corns or calluses or dig out ingrown toenails is likely to result in injury and infection which could pose a significant medical threat.
  • Schedule regular podiatric checkups. Your foot doctor is your partner in managing your diabetes. If you have questions about your feet and diabetes, contact our New Jersey locations in Edison, Monroe, Linden or Monmouth Junction by calling: 732-662-3050.