OC Feet News

Posts for tag: foot care

Kids playing soccerIt’s back-to-school sports season, and there’s no better time to brush up on these 5 safety tips to protect them from serious ankle injuries.

Every fall, Orange County foot and ankle surgeon Jonathan Bennett, DPM, notices an increase in ankle injuries among young athletes. Football, soccer and basketball are the sports most likely to lead to sprains, broken bones and other problems, he says. Bennett has offices in Fullerton and Tustin.

Bennett's top recommendation is for parents are to get ankle injuries treated right away.

"What seems like a sprain is not always a sprain; in addition to cartilage injuries, your son or daughter might have injured other bones in the foot without knowing it. Have a qualified doctor examine the injury," says Bennett. "The sooner rehabilitation starts, the sooner we can prevent long-term problems like instability or arthritis, and the sooner your child can get back into competition."

Bennett says parents should also follow these additional tips from the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons' Web site, FootHealthFacts.org: 

  1. Have old sprains checked by a doctor before the season starts. A medical check-up can reveal whether your child's previously injured ankle might be vulnerable to sprains, and could possibly benefit from wearing a supportive ankle brace during competition.

  2. Buy the right shoe for the sport. Different sports require different shoe gear. Players shouldn't mix baseball cleats with football shoes. 

  3. Children should start the season with new shoes. Old shoes can wear down like a car tire and become uneven on the bottom, causing the ankle to tilt because the foot can't lie flat. 

  4. Check playing fields for dips, divots and holes. Most sports-related ankle sprains are caused by jumping and running on uneven surfaces. That's why some surgeons recommend parents walk the field, especially when children compete in non-professional settings like public parks, for spots that could catch a player's foot and throw them to the ground. Alert coaching officials to any irregularities.

  5. Encourage stretching and warm-up exercises. Calf stretches and light jogging before competition helps warm up ligaments and blood vessels, reducing the risk for ankle injuries.

Have more questions? Don’t hesitate to call the Orange County Foot & Ankle Group. We also have same day appointments.

Sandy summer feetSummer in sunny Orange County just wouldn't be the same without kicking off your shoes or sandals. Parents and families can prevent cuts, puncture wounds and other injuries from going barefoot by following some simple tips from OC Feet.
 

1. See a foot and ankle surgeon within 24 hours for a puncture wound.

These injuries can embed unsterile foreign objects deep inside the foot. A puncture wound must be cleaned properly and monitored throughout the healing process. This will help to avoid complications, such as tissue and bone infections or damage to tendons and muscles in the foot. Foot and ankle surgeons are trained to properly care for these injuries.
 

2. Make sure you've been vaccinated against tetanus. Experts recommend teens and adults get a booster shot every 10 years.

Cuts and puncture wounds from sharp objects can lead to infections and illnesses such as tetanus.
 

3. Apply sunscreen to the tops and bottoms of your feet.

Feet get sunburn too. Rare but deadly skin cancers can develop on the feet.
 

4. Inspect your feet and your children's feet on a routine basis for skin problems such as warts, calluses, ingrown toenails and suspicious moles, spots or freckles.

The earlier a skin condition is detected, the easier it is for your foot and ankle surgeon to treat it.
 

5. Wear flip-flops or sandals around swimming pools, locker rooms and beaches.

To avoid cuts and abrasions from rough anti-slip surfaces and sharp objects hidden beneath sandy beaches, and to prevent contact with bacteria and viruses that can cause athlete's foot, plantar warts, and other problems.
 

6. Use common sense.

Every year, people lose toes while mowing the lawn barefoot. Others suffer serious burns from accidentally stepping on stray campfire coals or fireworks. Murky rivers, lakes and ponds can conceal sharp objects underwater. People with diabetes should never go barefoot, even indoors, because their nervous system may not "feel" an injury and their circulatory system will struggle to heal breaks in the skin.

For more info about puncture wounds, plantar warts, diabetic foot care and other topics can be found in our Patient Education section.

Making an appointment is easy, just go to our appointment page on line.

Foot CareWhether you like to get a pedicure in the nail salon or at home, follow these easy Dos and Don'ts to keep your feet looking and feeling their best.

 

Do's

  • If you have diabetes or poor circulation in your feet, consult a podiatrist so he or she can recommend a customized pedicure that both you and your salon can follow for optimal foot health.

  • Schedule your pedicure first thing in the morning. Salon foot baths are typically cleanest earlier in the day. If you're not a morning person, make sure that the salon filters and cleans the foot bath between clients.

  • Bring your own pedicure utensils to the salon. Bacteria and fungus can move easily from one person to the next if the salon doesn't use proper sterilization techniques.

  • When eliminating thick, dead skin build-up, also known as calluses, on the heel, ball and sides of the feet, use a pumice stone, foot file or exfoliating scrub. Soak feet in warm water for at least five minutes, then use the stone, scrub, or foot file to gently smooth calluses and other rough patches.

  • When trimming nails, use a toenail clipper with a straight edge to ensure your toenail is cut straight across. Other tools like manicure scissors or fingernail clippers increase the risk of ingrown toenails because of their small, curved shape. See a podiatrist if you have a tendency to develop ingrown toenails.

  • To smooth nail edges, use an emery board. File lightly in one direction without using too much pressure, being sure not to scrape the nail's surface.

  • Gently run a wooden or rubber manicure stick under your nails to keep them clean. This helps remove the dirt and build-up you may or may not be able to see.

  • Maintain the proper moisture balance of the skin on your feet by applying emollient-enriched moisturizer to keep soles soft.

  • Use a rubber cuticle pusher or manicure stick to gently push back cuticles. If toenails are healthy, you can use nail polish to paint toenails. Make sure to remove polish regularly using non-acetone nail polish remover.

 

Don'ts

  • Resist the urge to shave your legs before receiving a pedicure. Freshly shaven legs or small cuts on your legs may allow bacteria to enter.

  • If you are receiving a pedicure and manicure, don't use the same tools for both services as bacteria and fungus can transfer between fingers and toes.

  • Although certain salons offer this technique, don't allow technicians to use a foot razor to remove dead skin. Using a razor can result in permanent damage if used incorrectly and can easily cause infection if too much skin is removed.

  • Don't round the edges of your toenails. This type of shape increases the chances that painful ingrown toenails will develop. 

  • Emery boards are extremely porous and can trap germs that spread. Since they can't be sterilized, don't share nail files with friends and be sure to bring your own to the salon, unless you are sure that the salon replaces them with each customer.

  • Don't use any sharp tools to clean under nails. Using anything sharp makes it easy to puncture the skin, leaving it vulnerable to infection.

  • Be sure that you don't leave any moisture between toes. Anything left behind can promote the development of athlete's foot or a fungal infection.

  • Because cuticles serve as a protective barrier against bacteria, don't ever cut them. Cutting cuticles increases the risk of infection. Also, avoid incessantly pushing back cuticles, as doing so can make them thicker.

  • If you suffer from thick and discolored toenails, which could be a sign of a fungal infection, don't apply nail polish to cover up the problem. Nail polish locks out moisture and doesn't allow the nail bed to "breathe." Once you fix the underlying issue, then it is safe to paint nails. If the problem persists, be sure to visit your podiatrist.

Feet warming by the fireHoliday shopping, decorating, parties and traveling are all part of our holiday revelries. But while you’re making all that merriment, how happy are your feet?

You may be doing a lot of walking, dancing, standing and sitting in one position throughout the holiday season. Half of all Americans report experiencing foot pain at some point in their lives, according to a survey conducted by APMA. No one wan

ts soreness or injuries to slow them down during the holidays, so it’s important to care for your feet so they can carry you through all those seasonal celebrations and chores.

Follow this advice to keep feet healthy (and happy) this holiday season:

  • Moisturize – Dry winter air and cold temperatures can take a toll on skin. Moisturize feet daily to help avoid dry, cracked and irritated skin.

  • Exercise your feet – Stretching is a good way to avoid muscle cramps. Stave off toe cramps by raising, pointing and curling your toes for five seconds. Repeat 10 times. Rotating your ankles can also help relax feet. Cup your heel and turn each ankle slowly five times to loosen ankle joints.

  • Massage – Foot rubs not only feel good, they’re a great way to release tension, boost circulation and refresh skin after a long day on your feet. Take a few minutes to massage your feet at the end of a day of shopping and celebrating. Use lotion and take care of moisturizing at the same time!

  • Pedicure properly – Picture-perfect toes are part of a great holiday wardrobe for many women. Whether you do it yourself or go to a salon, be sure your pedicure is done properly. Never use a razor to remove dead skin – opt for a good pumice stone instead. Don’t cut cuticles; push them back gently with a rubber tool made for this purpose. Use toenail clippers with a straight edge to cut nails straight across.

  • Raise your legs – Feet and ankles can swell from sitting too long in one position (taking a long flight to grandma’s house for the holidays, for example) or if you’ve been on your feet all day (shopping, baking or cooking). Elevate your legs to reduce swelling. Lay or sit and lift your legs above your heart.

  • Wear smart shoes – OK, so you’ll never give up your sparkly high heels when it’s time for that special soiree. But for other holiday activities such as shopping, traveling or cooking, ditch the high heels. When you know you’ll be on your feet all day, wear comfortable shoes with good arch support and a padded sole. See which types of footwear have received the Seal of Acceptance and Seal of Approval for promoting foot health.

  • Get help – Feet shouldn’t hurt all the time. Persistent foot pain can be an indication of injury, irritation or illness. See a podiatrist if you experience pain; don’t wait until the holidays end.

September 25, 2013
Category: foot care
Tags: foot care  

Keep your dancing feet happy

Don’t Ignore Foot Pain on the Dance Floor

Aerobic dance classes at the gym are all the rage. Whether you’re taking up this new hobby or simply love to hit the dance floor, don’t let foot injuries mess up your groove.
 
Being “light on your feet” could result in pain as the hours of dancing ensue. Whether you’re doing the twist, the cha-cha slide, a jig or even dancing “Gangnam style,” keep in mind that if it hurts to do the moves, there could be an issue at foot.
 

What’s the best defense to protect your feet and ankles?

  • Wear appropriate shoes to properly support your feet and ankles
  • Perform dance moves that best fit your skill level, and sit down if you feel pain
If you do suffer a painful injury on the dance floor, it is important to make an appointment with our office as soon as possible. Prompt medical attention by a foot and ankle surgeon can make all the difference in proper rehabilitation. Most dance injuries can be treated with conservative care as long as they are not completely ignored. Don’t disregard foot pain just because you can walk on it; remember it is possible to walk on a seriously injured foot.