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Posts for tag: Flat Feet

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
November 13, 2018
Category: foot deformity
Tags: Flat Feet   orthotic device  

At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we often see patients with flat feet who are not experiencing any pain or discomfort. For others, however, that is not the case.  Flat feet is a somewhat complex disorder because there are multiple types and several different causes. For some patients, flat feet are the result of a developmental problem that started during childhood and has gotten progressively worse. For others, it is part of the aging process or is caused by weight gain through pregnancy or obesity. Many patients with flat feet also overpronate or roll their ankle inward when they walk. At the end of the day, however, all cases of flat feet have one thing in common: the partial or total collapse of the arch of the foot.

The deformity of flat feet can lead to all kinds of foot, leg, and lower extremity distress. Pain in the heel, arch, and shins are common and it can even extend to the knee, hip, and lower back. Fortunately, there are several conservative treatment approaches that can be used to relieve symptoms. These include:

  • Medications—nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can relieve inflammation and pain
  • Rest—the foot doctor may recommend that you reduce or eliminate activities that cause pain and cut down on prolonged periods of walking or standing. That way your arches can rest and inflammation will have a chance to subside. In extreme cases, a walking cast may help immobilize the foot.
  • Weight loss—if you are overweight, even slightly, it increases the strain on your arches and can increase pain.
  • Footwear modifications—wearing shoes that have good arch support is essential for patients with flat feet. An orthotic device may also be prescribed to increase that support and position feet properly.
  • Physical therapy—exercises can reduce pain and strengthen muscles.

The first step, however, is getting your feet evaluated. If you suspect you have problems with your arches, make an appointment at our New Jersey offices in Edison, Linden, Monmouth Junction or Monroe today by calling: 732-662-3050. Let our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, diagnose your condition and come up with a tailored treatment plan.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
September 26, 2018
Category: heel pain

At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we know that getting to the bottom of children’s foot pain can be tricky. Depending on the age of your child, it may be difficult to even know they have a foot problem because he or she may not be able to articulate fully the discomfort they are experiencing. In young children, parents may have to do a bit of sleuthing. If your child appears to be limping or walking in a funny way, complains that their legs are “tired,” or they seem to be avoiding physical activities and games they usually enjoy, these may be signs of foot pain. Ask your child to show you where on their foot it hurts. If they indicate the heel, here are a few potential causes:

Sever’s Disease—this is an inflammation of the growth plate which is at the back of the heel. Sever’s Disease is the most frequent cause of heel pain in children between the ages of 8 and 15. During those years the heel bone is in the process of developing. The area where new bone growth is forming is sensitive to repetitive stress and pounding. Sports activities such as soccer, basketball, gymnastics, and track can cause this area to become inflamed, which leads to severe pain that worsens with activity.

Plantar fasciitis—along the bottom of the foot, running from the heel to the toes, is a long band of tissue known as the plantar fascia. When the plantar fascia becomes inflamed, it can cause pain in the heel. Plantar fasciitis is most often caused by biomechanical dysfunction such as overly high arches or flat feet. Being overweight can increase the risk for this condition.

Poorly fitting shoes—sometimes heel pain in children is not from a medical condition but merely from shoes that don’t fit properly or are not correct for a particular activity. Too much time in cleats has been linked to Sever’s Disease. Children’s shoes should have adequate arch support and a cushioned sole that provides shock absorption for typical children’s activities. If your child has had a previous foot injury or is currently being treated for a chronic podiatric condition, check with our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah for recommendations of specific shoe designs that may best accommodate your child’s foot.

If your child is experiencing foot pain or you suspect there is a problem, contact our Edison, Monroe, Monmouth Junction or Linden office in New Jersey today for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
September 18, 2018

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and here at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we have a vested interest in this cause. Why? Studies show that obese children often continue on to be obese in adulthood. Carrying excess weight is harmful to your feet and ankles. The added strain is a cause or contributing factor for many foot and ankle disorders, including plantar fasciitis, sesamoiditis, flat feet, chronic ankle instability, and more. In addition, being obese greatly increases your risk for systemic diseases—many of which also have serious consequences for your feet—like diabetes and hypertension. Below are some simple steps to take now to help prevent your child from becoming overweight:

  1. Make dietary changes. Obviously, food choices are a big factor in maintaining a healthy weight. Too many high fat and calorie snacks and processed foods are readily available and inexpensive. You don’t have to change your family’s entire diet overnight. Make small choices gradually:
  • Buy more fruit and less pre-packaged snacks and desserts.
  • Teach your children to read labels and look at sugar and fat content in the foods they eat.
  • Do away with sugary drinks and encourage your family to drink more water.
  • Decrease portion size.
  1. Step up physical activity. The other part of the calorie equation is burning more calories than you take in. Look for ways to enjoy more physical pursuits as a family: bike rides, hiking, raking leaves, and rollerblading together. Even simply taking a walk after dinner is a great way to add more active minutes to the day. If your child has had a foot or ankle injury, check with our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, before starting new fitness activities.
  2. Put limits on screen time. Constant access to phones, computers, television, and video games will naturally disincline your child to participate in more active pursuits.
  3. Set regular bedtimes. Lack of sleep is a contributing factor to obesity. Now that school is back in session, create a schedule that allows your child to get enough sleep each night.
  4. Be a role model. Children learn by watching. If you show care about what you eat, being active and living a healthy lifestyle they will follow your example.

If you have questions about your child’s weight and foot health or have other podiatry concerns for you or your children, contact our Linden, Monroe, Edison or Monmouth Junction offices in New Jersey today by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
August 15, 2018
Category: Ankle Injury

An inflammation or injury to the Achilles tendon can severely limit your ability to walk, run and participate in daily activities for work and play. This large tendon connects your heel bone and your calf muscle and aids in lifting your heel off the ground. At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we’d like to offer the following do’s and don’ts to help patients protect the Achilles tendon:

Don’t: overdo it--the most common cause of inflammation of the tendon is overuse. A sudden increase in the duration and/or intensity of a repetitive activity involving the tendon can lead to pain, soreness and tenderness in the tendon. These would include running, stair climbing and running hills as well as doing sprints which require you to push off with force.

Do: stretch and warm up—taking the time to stretch your calf muscles before and after working out or playing a sport can greatly reduce the risk of injury to the Achilles tendon.

Do: check the condition of your sports shoes. If your shoes are worn out they may no longer be providing the support necessary to your arch and heel which can cause inflammation of the tendon.

Don’t: ignore Achilles symptoms—pain first thing in the morning, pain and tenderness that increases with activity, sluggishness or a feeling of tiredness in your lower leg, difficulty stretching the Achilles tendon or walking and extreme pain when the sides of the tendon is squeezed are all signs of Achilles overuse and micro tears that are causing damage to the tissue. In more advanced cases of Achilles tendinosis, nodules may form as well. At the first sign of Achilles discomfort, you should contact us at 732-662-3050 and make an appointment at our offices in Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction, NJ. Our podiatrists, Dr. Ben (Varun) Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, will examine your feet and lower legs and determine the best course of treatment to repair tendon damage and prevent future injury.

Do: talk to the foot doctor about Achilles injury risk if you have flat feet. Being flat footed puts additional strain on your Achilles tendon. Patients with this condition may need shoes with additional arch support or a custom orthotic device to wear in the shoes to counteract the effects of a low or non-existent arch.

To learn more about Achilles tendon issues and treatment options, contact us today. 

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
August 08, 2018
Category: Footwear

Ask yourself these two questions: are my feet hurting more than usual? How much time do I spend in my flip-flops? At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we know that flip-flops are a popular footwear choice especially during the summer months, but they can pose a serious risk to your feet. Although flip-flops are a good choice around the pool or when using the shower at the gym, they can do harm to your feet if you wear them as your primary shoe. Below are several reasons to re-think wearing flip-flops on a daily basis:

flip-flop

Increased risk of hammertoe—have you ever noticed how your toes have to work extra hard to grip the front of the flip-flops to keep them on? That repeated bending of the toe joint can eventually affect the biomechanics of your toes, causing them to become stiff and rigid in the bent hammertoe position. Switch to sandals that have an ankle strap instead.

Slips, falls and ankle sprains—flip-flops have nothing holding your foot in place. Never run in flip-flops and if a pick-up game of volleyball starts up at the beach, change into sneakers before joining in. The lack of side support makes it easy to twist your ankle, stub or cut your toe or trip on the front of the shoe.

A pain in the lower extremities—because flip-flops have zero arch support, you may experience symptoms similar to flat feet. These include stabbing pains in your arch and heel. Your joints try to compensate for the lack of arch in the shoe and this can throw your whole lower body out of alignment and cause aches and pains in your calves (Achilles tendonitis), knees, hips, and back.

Slow burn for calories—the effort to keep flip-flops on makes you take small steps and move more slowly. That means you’re burning fewer calories when you walk than you do when wearing sneakers.

Overexposure—the skin on your feet is exposed on all sides--except the sole--to whatever dirt, bacteria, and fungi are on the ground where you are walking when wearing flip-flops, increasing your risk of fungal infections and warts.

If you still are reluctant to give up your daily use of flip-flops, at least look into purchasing styles that have an arch added to them and better support for your foot. If you are experiencing foot, ankle or calf pain or toe problems, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction offices in New Jersey by calling 732-662-3050 and make an appointment with one of our podiatrists, Dr. Ben (Varun) Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, and get relief.