• Dr. Richard S. Mendelsohn, D.P.M., F.A.C.F.A.S.
  • Dr. Gary Scheib, D.P.M.
  • Dr. Deena L. Charney, D.P.M.
  • Dr. Cameron Phipps, D.P.M., A.A.C.F.A.S.
  • Dr. Ashley Mayer, D.P.M., A.A.C.F.A.S.
  • Dr. Michael Petranek D.P.M., F.A.C.F.A.S.

 

Posts for category: Foot Care

By Family Foot and Ankle Center
March 03, 2015
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Proper Footwear   Heel Pain  
Is heel pain keeping you down?  In pursuit of healthy bodies, pain is often the enemy. Pain that occurs right after an injury or early in an illness may play a protective role, often warning us about the damage we have suffered.  Plantar fasciitis (heel pain) is a foot condition in which a band of tissue in the sole of the foot becomes inflamed, leading to severe heel pain.  The heel pain can be so bad that it hurts to walk, much less exercise or do daily activities.  If one step causes shooting pain in your heel—especially when you get out of bed in the morning or stand up after sitting for a long period of time—plantar fasciitis may be to blame.  Contact your podiatrist in Fairfax immediately for proper diagnosis and treatment of your pain. 
 

Understanding Heel Pain with Help from Your Podiatrist in Fairfax

Plantar fasciitis, or heel pain, occurs when the plantar fascia is strained over time beyond its normal extension.  This causes the soft tissue fibers of the fascia to tear or stretch at points along its length, leading to inflammation, pain and possibly the growth of a bone spur where it attaches to the heel bone.
 
Inflammation may become irritated by shoes that lack appropriate support, mainly in the arch area and by the constant irritation associated with an athletic lifestyle.  Resting may provide temporary relief, but when you resume walking you may experience a sudden elongation of the fascia band, which stretches and pulls on the heel.  As you walk the pain may lessen or even disappear, but that may just be a false sense of relief as the pain often will return after prolonged rest or extensive walking.  
 
You can take steps now to avoid heel pain, including:
  • Wear shoes that fit well
  • Wear proper shoes for each activity
  • Do not wear shoes with excessive wear on heels or soles
  • Prepare properly before exercising by stretching and warming up
  • Pace yourself when you participate in athletic activities
  • Don’t underestimate your body’s need for rest and good nutrition
  • Lose excess weight
If pain and other symptoms of inflammation persist, you should limit your normal daily activities and contact your Fairfax podiatrist at Fairfax Office immediately.  
By Family Foot and Ankle Center
January 30, 2015
Category: Foot Care
During your lifetime, your feet endure hundreds of thousands of miles, and may be among the most underappreciated and hardest working parts of your body. Taking care of our feet is important; especially since a simple every day task like walking can become painful if an injury or problem occurs. Fortunately, foot care can be simple and easy with the help of your podiatrist.  Here are three easy ways to care for your feet in order to keep them looking, feeling, and functioning, as they should.  
 

Practice Routine Foot Care

It is true that most of us neglect our feet, and practicing good foot hygiene normally takes a back seat when compared to other health and beauty treatments. But we need to take care of our feet if we want to maintain a pain free and active lifestyle. Here are a few simple foot care tips that help keep your feet looking fresh and feeling at the top of their game. 
 
  • Wash your feet daily with warm water. Whenever you get your feet wet, make sure to dry them thoroughly, especially between the toes.
  • Keep skin soft and smooth with foot cream (ask one of our local podiatrist in Fairfax, Reston, Mclean or Ashburn for suggestions) applied to the tops and bottoms of your feet. Do not put lotion between the toes to avoid causing an infection. 
  • Scrub your feet, especially the heels, with a foot scrubber or pumice stone on a regular basis to remove the dead cells. 
  • Trim toenails once a week, cutting the nails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails. 
  • In the sun, apply sunscreen to protect your exposed feet.
  • To keep you feet dry and odor free, make use of products like foot powders and sprays. 
 

Wear Appropriate Footwear

One of the best ways to keep your feet looking and feeling healthy is to wear the proper footwear. 
Purchase shoes that fit well and offer the appropriate support for your feet. The best time to buy shoes is later in the day, when the feet are swollen, and replace old, worn out shoes as soon as possible as they offer no support.  It’s also important to select and wear the right shoe for each sport or activity, such as running shoes if you’re a runner. Family Foot and Ankle Center can help you determine the best shoe that will offer the most support and stability for your feet.  
 
Taking care of our feet doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, incorporating a few extra steps into your daily routine can keep your feet looking and feeling their best. Always consult with your podiatrist at Family Foot and Ankle Center if you experience pain or discomfort in your feet or ankles. And if you are diabetic, you run a much higher risk of developing foot problems, so visit your podiatrist regularly for foot care tips and exams. 
By Family Foot and Ankle Center
January 15, 2015
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Healthy Feet   Diabetes   Foot Hygiene  
Diabetes causes a condition of painful nerve damage called peripheral neuropathy. Neuropathy can affect your entire body, but most often the legs and feet are the body’s most prone areas to serious health problems.  Damage to the nerves can cause the loss of feeling in your feet, making it difficult to detect extreme temperatures and pain as easily or readily as someone who does not have diabetes. Understanding the connection between foot care and diabetes is important to avoid more serious health problems. Visit your podiatrist in Fairfax at Family Foot and Ankle Center, about the best ways to care for your feet. 
 

Inspect Your Feet Regularly

If you have diabetes, it’s crucial to examine your feet every day and after every injury, regardless of how minor you may think the injury is.  If you notice redness, swelling, persistent pain, numbness, tingling or any other unusual signs on any part of your foot, call your Fairfax podiatrist immediately as this could signify serious health problems. 
 
It’s also recommended that people with diabetes see a podiatrist for annual checkups.  A professional podiatrist in Fairfax can detect signs of changes, broken skin or ulcers that can be detrimental to the health of your feet and body. He can also check your blood circulation, identify loss of sensation or detect areas of high pressure- all of which require professional medical attention. 
 

Small Foot Problems Can Lead to Bigger Problems

If you have diabetes, even the smallest foot problems such as a cut, can turn into more serious complications.  Some of these small complications include:
  • Ulcers that don’t heal
  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Cracked heels
  • Hammertoes
  • Bunions
  • Ingrown toenails
With these complications, you run the risk of developing diabetic peripheral neuropathy, which is a condition that develops slowly and worsens over time, and Charcot foot, which is a condition in which the bones of the foot are weakened enough to fracture.  Taking extra precautions and caring for even the smallest problem can save your foot. 
 

Keep Your Feet Healthy with Proper Foot Hygiene

Everyone needs to practice good foot hygiene daily, but people with diabetes should pay extra attention to keeping their feet clean in order to prevent health problems.  If you have diabetes your podiatrist in Fairfax urges you to:
  • Wash your feet daily with lukewarm water and mild soap, making sure to dry them thoroughly, especially between the toes. 
  • Keep the skin on your feet smooth and soft by applying a non-irritating moisturizer, avoiding the areas between the toes. Doing so can help prevent cracks and sores that lead to infection. 
  • Avoid ingrown toenails than can get infected by keeping them neatly trimmed straight across.
  • Wear clean, dry socks and change them every day.
  • Avoid walking barefoot to protect feet from harmful foreign particles. 
  • Never attempt to remove corns, calluses or other sores from your feet on your own. See your Fairfax podiatrist for safe and pain free removal. 
Early detection, simple care and regular inspections can go a long way to avoid serious foot complications related to diabetes. Diabetes is serious, especially when it comes to your feet. If you have diabetes, talk with your podiatrist in Fairfax about what you can do now to keep your feet safe, strong, and healthy. 
By Family Foot and Ankle Center
January 02, 2015
Category: Foot Care

Keep your Children Active by Following Proper Foot Care

You often worry about your children’s teeth, eyes, and other parts of their body.  You teach them how to wash, brush, and groom, but what do you do about your child’s feet as they are still developing?  Many adult foot ailments, as with other health issues, have their origins in childhood and can be present at birth.  Periodic professional attention from your Fairfax podiatrist and regular foot care can minimize these problems in your child’s life later on.  
 
Neglecting your child’s foot health invites problems in other parts of the body, such as the legs and back.  Foot health begins in childhood because your child’s feet must carry him or her for a lifetime.  Your child’s life is certain to be happier and more enjoyable if you have your child develop strong, healthy feet as he or she grows into adulthood. 
 

Your Podiatrist in Fairfax Explains: The Early Years

The human foot is one of the most complicated parts of the body with 26 bones, as well as ligaments, muscles, blood vessels and nerves.  The feet of an infant are soft and pliable and abnormal pressure can cause deformities.  In the first year, a child’s foot grows rapidly reaching almost half their adult foot size.  Podiatrists consider the first year to be the most important in regards to development.  To help ensure normal growth, allow your baby to kick and stretch his or her feet and make sure shoes and socks do not squeeze their toes.  
 
Your toddler will walk when he or she is ready and you should try not to force this act.  Watch your child’s gait once he or she begins to walk.  Pay close attention to see if their toe touches down instead of the heel or if your child always sits while others actively play.  Many toddlers have a pigeon-toe gait, which is normal and some initially learn to walk landing on their toes instead of their heels.  Most children outgrow these problems, but your podiatrist in Fairfax can treat other conditions detected early more easily. 
 

Footwear for your Child

Children should not wear shoes until they can walk, so avoid pram shoes, which are normally soft, and usually made to match outfits.  For babies, avoid tightly wrapped blankets that prevent kicking and leg movement.  Walking barefoot, where it is safe, is good for children.  Your child’s feet are vulnerable to deformity from any ill-fitting footwear or hosiery until the bones are completely formed at about 18 years of age.  In addition, socks made from natural materials are better for your child’s feet than stretch-fit socks.  
 
When buying shoes for your child, the shape of the shoe and the toe area should be wide and round, allowing for toes to move and spread.  It is also important for the shoe to have a lace or a buckle, without this your child’s toes will claw to hold the shoe on.  The heel of the shoe should not be too high, as high heels can also result in foot deformity.  
 
Start early in taking care of your children’s feet because neglecting foot health is an invitation to severe problems.  Contact your podiatrist in Fairfax for further consultation on your child’s growing, active feet.  Having strong, healthy feet allows your child to walk, run, and play so take extra precautions and protect their feet in order to provide them a lifetime of healthy feet. 
By Family Foot and Ankle Center
December 15, 2014
Category: Foot Care

Remain Active in Sports with Help from Your Fairfax, VA Podiatrist

From weekend warriors to professional athletes, it is important to take care of your feet to remain fit and active while participating in sports and other recreational activities.  With repeated pounding that runners’ feet receive on paved surfaces or the side-to-side motion seen in court sports, there is no question that athletes’ feet and ankles are prime candidates for injuries.  It is important to be on the lookout for some of the common problems associated with athletes – from ankle sprains to heel pain.  With help from your podiatrist in Fairfax, VA at Family Foot and Ankle Center, you can take charge of your feet and avoid the bench.
 

Heel Pain/Plantar Fasciitis 

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the connective tissue, called the plantar fascia, which stretches from the base of the toes, across the arch of the foot, to the point at which it inserts into the heel bone.  It is also commonly referred to as heel or arch pain.  Over-pronation may be a cause of plantar fasciitis.  As the foot rolls inward excessively when walking, it flattens your foot, lengthens the arch, and puts added tension on the plantar fascia.  Over time, this repetition causes inflammation of your heel and arch.  Your podiatrist in Fairfax, VA will determine the best treatment option to alleviate your pain. 
 

Orthotics Provide Comfort and Stability

Your Fairfax, VA podiatrist offers orthotics to reduce pain and restore proper function to the feet, thus relieving pain.  An orthotic device is inserted into the shoe and is designed to restore and aid the natural foot function. This is achieved by realigning the foot and ankles to their natural position, allowing muscles and joints to move with less stress and tension. 
 
Many people can benefit from orthotics, including people with jobs that require standing or walking for extended periods of time.  Common foot ailments, such as corns, calluses, Morton’s neuroma, flat foot, hammertoe and plantar fasciitis can often be improved with the help of a custom-made shoe insert that fits comfortably into the shoe.  
 
Orthotic devices allow the bones, tendons and muscles of the feet and lower legs to function at their highest potential. Orthotics can decrease discomfort and improve function, not only in the foot, but also in other parts of the body so that everyday tasks aren’t painful. 
 
Foot pain is never normal and should not be ignored.  Always visit your Fairfax, VA podiatrist for proper diagnosis and treatment. Whether you are active in sports or simply want to relieve pain caused by the stresses of everyday tasks, you can benefit from a custom made orthotic device.  
 
As an athlete it is important to remain on your feet.  With the help of sports podiatry and your Fairfax, VA podiatrist, you can ensure the health of your feet. 


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