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Monday, 16 October 2017 00:00

A new study by the University of Waterloo says that the elderly need up to twice as long as young adults to realize they are falling. Seniors are already at an increased risk of falling due to a number of reasons. This study helps show that once they are falling, they don’t process it as quickly as a younger person would. Consequently, there are more times that seniors can’t react fast enough to catch themselves or brace for impact. Falls are a leading cause of hospitalization among the elderly. Studies like this and increased awareness are needed to help prevent future falls among this rapidly growing group of people.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with Peter C. Smith from Lancaster Podiatry Association. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

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

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Monday, 09 October 2017 00:00

A new study conducted by the University of Oregon, and with the participation of Stanford University, the University of Southern California, and the University of Colorado Boulder, seeks to identify athletes who are likely to develop stress fractures. With newly known risk factor indicators available, athletes who are at risk for stress fractures can be alerted and allowed to rest to prevent them. Stress fractures, or tiny hairline fractures in the bone, most commonly occur from overuse and lack of rest. The study is still in its early stages and will take several years to produce conclusive results. Researchers are hopeful that this will help prevent athlete's injuring themselves and allow them to keep playing.
 

Activities where too much pressure is put on the feet can cause stress fractures. To learn more, contact Peter C. Smith from Lancaster Podiatry Association. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep your pain free and on your feet.

Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

Stress fractures occur in the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken from too much or too little use.  The feet and ankles then lose support when walking or running from the impact of the ground. Since there is no protection, the bones receive the full impact of each step. Stress on the feet can cause cracks to form in the bones, thus creating stress fractures.

What are Stress Fractures?

Stress fractures occur frequently in individuals whose daily activities cause great impact on the feet and ankles. Stress factors are most common among:

  • Runners                                  
  • People affected with Osteoporosis
  • Tennis or basketball players
  • Gymnasts
  • High impact workouts

Symptoms

Pain from the fractures occur in the area of the fractures and can be constant or intermittent. It will often cause sharp or dull pain with swelling and tenderness. Engaging in any kind of activity which involves high impact will aggravate pain.

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

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Tuesday, 03 October 2017 00:00

Heel pain is a relatively common ailment in the United States. Most cases of heel pain are caused by a condition known as plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia, a band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes. Common factors that cause plantar fasciitis include overuse from exercising or athletics, pressure from obesity, or standing for long periods of time. Exercises like towel stretches, stair stretches, wall stretches, and more can help relieve pain if approved by a podiatrist. If the shoes you wear are old or uncomfortable, try a new pair that provides plenty of cushion and arch support; this will ensure comfort when wearing them for long periods of time. In very rare cases, surgery to relieve pressure may be deemed necessary. However, in most cases surgery is a last resort and will only be considered once all other methods have been exhausted. Seeing a podiatrist is vital for getting a proper diagnosis and treatment for heel pain and plantar fasciitis.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Peter C. Smith of Lancaster Podiatry Association. 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 office located in Lancaster, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 25 September 2017 00:00

While typically not as serious as some other conditions, cracked heels can be very uncomfortable for those who have them. Knowing the causes of cracked heels and what to look for allows you to prevent and treat them. Dry skin is one of the most common causes for cracked heels and generally occurs right before cracks develop. Moisturizing your feet will help prevent and alleviate this dryness. Too much pressure on your feet is another cause of cracked heels, so giving your feet a rest and wearing comfortable shoes will help prevent cracks. Athlete’s foot, psoriasis, and eczema can all lead to redness, flaky skin, peeling skin, and cracked heels. Athlete’s foot can typically be treated with antifungal spray. While psoriasis and eczema have no known cures, topical corticosteroids can help mitigate the effects that lead to cracked heels. Finally, for beach goers, sunburn can lead to cracked heels. Aloe Vera creams may also help soothe sunburned skin. If cracked heels lead to pain or do not go away, see a podiatrist for treatment and advice.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Peter C. Smith from Lancaster Podiatry Association. 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 one of our office located in Lancaster, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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