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When it comes to barefoot running, the consequence is in the amount rather than the activity itself. Barefoot running should consistently be treated like a new activity, which means start with a small dose and then progressively increase the distance each time you run. This allows for the body to get better acquainted with the activity and creates a low risk environment. On the other hand, if you don’t pace yourself, then you will become more prone to injuries. It is considered easier to gain proper running form from being barefoot compared to wearing shoes. This is because when you are barefoot, you aren’t prone to some aspects of poor form that present themselves while wearing shoes. When running barefoot, it is easier to take shorter strides in order to reduce impact forces on the lower legs. The most important part of barefoot running is to run by effort and feel rather than pace. This is due to the purpose of barefoot running being to improve efficiency, get stronger and to reduce your risk for injury. It is important when taking up barefoot running that you start off at a comfortable pace, and then slowly build yourself up. If you find yourself interested in this style of running, you should consult with a podiatrist to see if it is a good option for you.

 

Barefoot running has its own share of benefits and disadvantages. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Martin Sloan from Lake Pointe Foot & Ankle. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Barefoot Running

The Impact of Barefoot Running

  • Running without shoes changes the motion of your running, as most running is done by landing on the heel of the feet.
  • Running barefoot requires a different way of running; the landing is done on the front part of the feet.

The Advantages of Barefoot Running

  • When running and landing on the front feet, the impact on the feet and ankle is reduced; this can reduce stress injuries.
  • It strengthens muscles in the feet, ankles and lower legs.
  • Balance of the body is improved, and there is a greater sensory input from the feet to the rest of the body.

The Drawbacks of Barefoot Running

  • No protection while running, makes it likely that runners will land on sharp objects and scrapes, bruises and cuts on the feet will result.
  • Blisters may form.
  • Possibility of plantar fascia problems.
  • Risk of getting Achilles tendonitis.

So, what can runners do to make barefoot running safe? It’s best to make a slow transition from running shoes to barefoot running. Once the feet begin to adjust, try walking, then jogging and gradually increasing the distance. Minimalist running shoes may also be an option.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Rockwall and Abilene, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about The Benefits of Barefoot Running
Monday, 22 July 2019

Types of Heel Pain

Many people experience heel pain, which can originate for several reasons. Achilles tendinitis occurs when the pain is felt behind the heel, and it may also be noticed on the outer or inner part of the heel. The most common type of heel pain is caused by a condition that is known as plantar fasciitis, and if it is not promptly treated, it can cause pain that can be disabling. Some patients experience heel bursitis, and this kind of pain is felt inside the heel. Sever's disease may be common among teenage athletes, and this affects the growth plates of the heel bone. If you have any type of heel pain, it is strongly suggested that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly diagnose and treat heel conditions.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Dr. Martin Sloan of Lake Pointe Foot & Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our offices located in Rockwall and Abilene, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain

Foot wounds are described as deep tissue being exposed on the feet when the outer skin is damaged. Wounds are also referred to as ulcers. Some groups of people are more susceptible to having wounds on the feet than others. These people typically have diabetes, neuropathy or vascular disease. If you have one or more of these ailments, be sure to check your feet regularly. People also experience wounds from wearing ill-fitting shoes, staying in bed for long periods of time, or incurring an injury. Indications of the presence of an ulcer include drainage, odors, and inflammation. It is imperative to treat a wound early in order to prevent an infection from potentially forming. If an infection materializes, antibiotics or surgery may be necessary. If you believe you have a wound in the foot or ankle area, be sure to see a podiatrist to obtain the proper treatments.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with Dr. Martin Sloan from Lake Pointe Foot & Ankle. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Rockwall and Abilene, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care

The medical condition plantar fasciitis, occurs when the band of tissue that is located on the bottom of the foot becomes inflamed. The function of this band of tissue is to connect the heel to the toes. Additionally, it helps the arch maintain its natural shape and prevents it from becoming completely flat. A common reason plantar fasciitis occurs includes over-stretching during running activities. Mild relief may be found when walking and standing is limited and when the foot can rest. Plantar fasciitis is a common ailment among baseball players, but it may be difficult for players to stop their activities, so the healing process can begin. If you have pain in the heel area of your foot, it is suggested that you schedule a consultation with a podiatrist to receive a proper diagnosis and advice.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Martin Sloan  from Lake Pointe Foot & Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Rockwall and Abilene, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis

The condition that is referred to as cracked heels often occurs when the skin on the heels becomes dry. In severe cases, fissures may form and can begin to bleed, causing pain and discomfort. Research has indicated the thyroid gland may play a significant role in the formation of cracked heels. Hypothyroidism can cause a hormone imbalance that can lead to this ailment. Additional reasons why cracked heels may develop can include medical conditions such as psoriasis or standing for extended periods of time throughout the day. If you are afflicted with cracked heels, mild relief may be found when the feet are washed and dried thoroughly, followed by applying a good moisturizer daily. Many patients find it helpful to wear shoes that have a closed back, as this may be helpful in preventing this condition. If you would like additional information on how to treat cracked heels, it is suggested that you schedule a consultation with a podiatrist.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Martin Sloan from Lake Pointe Foot & Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Rockwall and Abilene, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Gout Pain Can Be Managed

Gout is a form of arthritis that can affect anyone. Schedule a visit to learn about how gout can be managed and treated.

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