Transformation of Your Feet During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a transformative journey for a woman's body, and it is not just the baby bump that undergoes changes. The feet also experienced their share of adjustments during this remarkable period. As the body produces the hormone relaxin to prepare for childbirth, it can affect the ligaments and tendons throughout, including the feet. This increased flexibility can lead to a temporary increase in shoe size. Swelling, known as edema, is another common foot change during pregnancy and is often caused by fluid retention. This can make wearing comfortable footwear imperative. Added pressure on the arches can trigger or exacerbate flat feet, resulting in discomfort or pain. Be prepared for these transformations, and remember that they are all part of the incredible journey to motherhood. If you would like more information about how to find relief from foot pain during pregnancy, in addition to learning more about how the feet change during this exciting time, it is suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can provide you with useful knowledge.

Pregnant women with swollen feet can be treated with a variety of different methods that are readily available. For more information about other cures for swollen feet during pregnancy, consult with one of our podiatrists from Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.

What Foot Problems Can Arise During Pregnancy?

One problem that can occur is overpronation, which occurs when the arch of the foot flattens and tends to roll inward.  This can cause pain and discomfort in your heels while you’re walking or even just standing up, trying to support your baby.  

Another problem is edema, or swelling in the extremities. This often affects the feet during pregnancy but tends to occur in the later stages. 

How Can I Keep My Feet Healthy During Pregnancy?

  • Wearing orthotics can provide extra support for the feet and help distribute weight evenly
  • Minimize the amount of time spent walking barefoot
  • Wear shoes with good arch support
  • Wear shoes that allow for good circulation to the feet
  • Elevate feet if you experience swelling
  • Massage your feet
  • Get regular, light exercise, such as walking, to promote blood circulation to the feet

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

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Diagnosing Foot and Heel Pain in Runners

Foot and heel pain is a common challenge for runners, impacting both beginners and seasoned athletes. The discomfort, often described as walking on glass, can be attributed to various causes, with plantar fasciitis at the top of the list. Identifying the root cause of foot pain is vital. While plantar fasciitis is a common diagnosis, other factors may contribute to discomfort. For runners coping with plantar fasciitis, early intervention and targeted exercises may offer hope for relief and continued running. Wearing proper footwear selection is essential in preventing foot pain, including well-fitted shoes and moisture-wicking socks. Addressing gait issues, correcting running techniques, and incorporating flexibility and strength training are essential measures. Gradually increasing training intensity can help to avoid overuse injuries. If you are a runner and are experiencing foot or heel pain, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment options.

All runners should take extra precaution when trying to avoid injury. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists of Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

There are a lot of mistakes a runner can make prior to a workout that can induce injury. A lot of athletes tend to overstretch before running, instead of saving those workouts for a post-run routine. Deep lunges and hand-to-toe hamstring pulls should be performed after a workout instead of during a warmup. Another common mistake is jumping into an intense routine before your body is physically prepared for it. You should try to ease your way into long-distance running instead of forcing yourself to rush into it.

More Tips for Preventing Injury

  • Incorporate Strength Training into Workouts - This will help improve the body’s overall athleticism
  • Improve and Maintain Your Flexibility – Stretching everyday will help improve overall performance
  • “Warm Up” Before Running and “Cool Down” Afterward – A warm up of 5-10 minutes helps get rid of lactic acid in the muscles and prevents delayed muscle soreness
  • Cross-Training is Crucial
  • Wear Proper Running Shoes
  • Have a Formal Gait Analysis – Poor biomechanics can easily cause injury

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

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Heel Pain Can Indicate a Type of Arthritis

Heel pain is a common complaint, often attributed to factors like wearing improper footwear or overuse. However, it may surprise you to learn that heel pain can also be a subtle signal of arthritis, specifically, ankylosing spondylitis, or AS. This chronic autoimmune condition primarily affects the spine, but it can also extend its reach to peripheral areas, including the heels. AS triggers heightened inflammation throughout the body’s joints and soft tissues, including peripheral joints like the heels, hips, shoulders, fingers, and toes. Heel pain emerges when the inflammatory response targets the heel or its supporting ligaments and tendons. Chronic back pain and spinal rigidity are classic AS symptoms, and may also cause discomfort in the heels. If left untreated, the pain can escalate, leading to severe stiffness and reduced mobility. The precise cause of AS remains unknown, but those with a family history of ankylosing spondylitis or with conditions like Crohn's disease, psoriasis, or ulcerative colitis, seem to be more susceptible. If you are experiencing persistent heel pain in addition to other symptoms, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to explore potential underlying causes, and create an effective treatment plan.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors 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 Canonsburg and McMurray, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Reminder: When Was the Last Time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

Keep Your Feet Healthy When Walking

Walking is a popular low-impact exercise with numerous health benefits, and ensuring your feet stay happy and healthy is key to maximizing those benefits. Proper form and posture when walking are essential elements to consider to prevent injuries. Maintaining proper posture and alignment is the foundation of a healthy walking routine. Imagine a string pulling you up from the crown of your head, ensuring you stand tall. Keep your head up, eyes forward, and shoulders back, allowing your arms to move freely at your sides. Tighten your abs and align your rib cage with your hips, knees, ankles, and second toe to avoid strain on your lower half. Pay close attention to your feet during each step. Adopt a rolling motion of heel, ball, and toes to distribute stress evenly across the lower body. Avoid slamming your entire foot down, as this can increase the risk of knee, hip, and ankle injuries. Notice your walking cadence and try to find a balance between longer, less frequent steps and shorter, more frequent steps to reduce joint stress. While walking is generally low-risk, staying alert is essential. Watch out for obstacles like curbs, potholes, or uneven terrain, especially in low-light conditions. If you have foot problems that you believe may be an after effect of your walking routine, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries and build strength. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Exercise for Your Feet

Exercise for your feet can help you gain strength, mobility and flexibility in your feet. They say that strengthening your feet can be just as rewarding as strengthening another part of the body. Your feet are very important, and we often forget about them in our daily tasks. But it is because of our feet that are we able to get going and do what we need to. For those of us fortunate enough to not have any foot problems, it is an important gesture to take care of them to ensure good health in the long run.

Some foot health exercises can include ankle pumps, tip-toeing, toe rises, lifting off the floor doing reps and sets, and flexing the toes. It is best to speak with Our doctors to determine an appropriate regimen for your needs. Everyone’s needs and bodies are different, and the activities required to maintain strength in the feet vary from individual to individual. 

Once you get into a routine of doing regular exercise, you may notice a difference in your feet and how strong they may become.

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

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Treatment Options for Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis, a common cause of heel and arch pain, arises from repeated micro-tears in the plantar fascia fibers, primarily at the point where the fascia connects to the heel bone. Stretching exercises are a vital treatment for plantar fasciitis. These exercises should focus on both the calf and the plantar fascia to yield maximum effectiveness, as tight calf muscles are a frequent cause of plantar fasciitis. Strengthening exercises that target intrinsic foot muscles and the calf muscles offer significant relief by stabilizing and supporting the foot and heel. Shoe inserts, such as gel heel pads or orthotics, are another simple, yet effective treatment. These aids vary from basic heel pads or cups that offer cushioning for the heel to custom-made orthotics prescribed by a podiatrist that correct abnormal foot positions, such as fallen arches. They reduce tension on the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia, providing much-needed comfort. Choosing the right footwear is an important way to manage plantar fasciitis. Opt for shoes that provide excellent cushioning and support, especially for the medial arch of the foot. Wearing shoes throughout the day, rather than walking barefoot, ensures continuous support and cushioning for the feet. If you are experiencing symptoms of plantar fasciitis, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist who can safely guide your treatment and recovery. 

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists from Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

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

 

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Morton’s Toe Can Cause Pain

Morton's toe is characterized by the second toe appearing to be longer than the big toe. It is a prevalent foot structure that affects weight distribution and occasionally causes discomfort. Morton’s toe is a hereditary trait that has also been associated with potential advantages in athletics, as many professional athletes exhibit Morton's toe. Morton's toe is not actually caused by the second toe itself. In fact, its root lies in the metatarsals. When the first metatarsal is shorter, it makes the second toe seem longer. This condition leads to uneven weight distribution across the other bones of the feet. Over time, Morton’s toe may result in aches and pains, primarily felt at the base of the first two metatarsal bones and at the head of the second metatarsal. Fortunately, conservative treatments, such as padding, specific exercises, medication, and wearing custom orthotics can effectively manage the associated pain. For cases where conservative measures fall short, surgical options that call for removing certain toe joints are available. Seeking early intervention and consulting with a podiatrist can guide individuals with Morton's toe toward an appropriate and personalized course of action to maintain foot health and overall well being. For more information on Morton’s toe, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist.

If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Biomechanics in Podiatry

Podiatric biomechanics is a particular sector of specialty podiatry with licensed practitioners who are trained to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and lower leg. Biomechanics deals with the forces that act against the body, causing an interference with the biological structures. It focuses on the movement of the ankle, the foot and the forces that interact with them.

A History of Biomechanics

  • Biomechanics dates back to the BC era in Egypt where evidence of professional foot care has been recorded.
  • In 1974, biomechanics gained a higher profile from the studies of Merton Root, who claimed that by changing or controlling the forces between the ankle and the foot, corrections or conditions could be implemented to gain strength and coordination in the area.

Modern technological improvements are based on past theories and therapeutic processes that provide a better understanding of podiatric concepts for biomechanics. Computers can provide accurate information about the forces and patterns of the feet and lower legs.

Understanding biomechanics of the feet can help improve and eliminate pain, stopping further stress to the foot.

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

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Causes of Big Toe Joint Pain

One of the most important components of your foot is the big toe joint, scientifically known as the first metatarsophalangeal joint, or first MPJ. When issues arise within this joint, they can significantly impact your daily life, ranging from walking to overall body posture. Hallux limitus is a condition that pertains to the limited range of motion in the big toe joint. One of the main causes of this condition is inflammatory arthritis. Your big toe joint plays a critical role in walking and maintaining proper balance. When this joint loses its range of motion it can lead to significant difficulties in walking and cause pain during each step. This can alter the gait and in turn affect the knee, hip, and back. If arthritis is a contributing factor, disease specific medications can be prescribed. In severe cases, surgical intervention may be needed. Procedures can range from cleaning out the joint to more advanced surgeries, such as joint fusion or joint replacement. For an accurate appraisal of the problems involving your big toe pain, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist. 

Toe pain can disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Causes Toe Pain?

Most severe toe pain is caused due to a sports injury, trauma from dropping something heavy on the toe, or bumping into something rigid. Other problems can develop over time for various reasons.

Toe pain can be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Trauma
  • Sports injury
  • Wearing shoes that are too tight
  • Arthritis
  • Gout
  • Corns and calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Blisters
  • Ingrown toenails
  • Sprains
  • Fractures (broken bones)
  • Dislocations

When to See a Podiatrist

  • Severe pain
  • Persistent pain that lasts more than a week
  • Signs of infection
  • Continued swelling
  • Pain that prevents walking

Diagnosis

In many cases the cause of toe pain is obvious, but in others, a podiatrist may want to use more advanced methods to determine the problem. These can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatments for toe pain and injuries vary and may include shoe inserts, padding, taping, medicines, injections, and in some cases, surgery. If you believe that you have broken a toe, please see a podiatrist as soon as possible.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Canonsburg and McMurray, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Types of Flat Feet

Flatfoot is characterized by the loss of the foot's arch, leading to an abducted forefoot and a hindfoot deformity. The two types of flat feet are flexible and rigid flatfoot. In flexible flatfoot, the arch appears when not bearing weight, but disappears when weight is applied. Conversely, in rigid flatfoot, the arch is consistently absent. Flexible flatfoot often appears in young children and may self-resolve. Its frequency in adults is unclear, due to frequent misdiagnosis. The disorder can be either congenital or developed over time. Flexible flatfoot results from ligament laxity, while adult-acquired flatfoot is attributed to posterior tibial tendon insufficiency, potentially caused by factors like obesity, neuropathy, or trauma. Rigid flatfoot results from bone irregularities or arthritis. A missing foot arch and deformities are noticeable upon examination. If you have flatfoot and it is causing you discomfort, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist who can determine which type of flat foot you have, in addition to providing appropriate relief and treatment options.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Canonsburg Podiatry Associates. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

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

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