Pain

How to Choose the Right Diabetic Footwear

  • diabetic footare


Did you know that around 25% of all diabetes-related visits to the hospital are due to foot problems?

It’s because high blood sugar levels can cause damage to the feet’s fine blood vessels. With decreased blood flow to the feet, a number of deformities could happen. These include calluses, hammertoes, claw toes, and foot ulcers.

The good news is, even with all the medical issues associated with diabetes, foot care is one area of self-management where putting in effort and vigilance pays off. Here, we’ll talk about the importance of choosing the right diabetic footwear as an essential component of diabetic foot care.

Diabetic Footwear for Injury Prevention

Choosing the right footwear isn’t optional, especially if you have diabetic peripheral neuropathy. You don’t want to risk even the tiniest blister because that could lead to an infection. And an infection might lead to gangrene, which could lead to an amputation.

Even on the beach, you don’t want to go walking around in flip-flops, or worse, going barefoot. You need to think of diabetic footwear as your first line of defense against injury.

The Best Diabetic Shoes: What to Look for

Lightweight and breathable. Those are the first two things you want in diabetic shoes. You want to make sure the construction allows your feet to breathe.

Your best bet is those with designs that allow room for custom insoles. You also want to stay away from footwear that has interior seams to prevent friction injuries.

Other things to look for include a spacious toe box and velcro or elastic. The last two will help you adjust the fit easily and prevent your shoes from moving around and slipping.

Tips for Choosing the Right Diabetic Shoes

The right shoes don’t have to be custom-made. You can buy them off the shelf if you don’t have bunions, hammertoes, or any other foot deformity that would prevent you from using regular shoes.

If you do, then you need special inserts or customized shoes. High-heels are definitely a no-no, as are slip-on loafers and sandals with straps between the toes. Loafers don’t offer a lot of support, while sandals with straps can rub against your feet.

Whatever footwear your doctor recommends, off-the-shelf or specially-made therapeutic shoes, make sure the fit is good. Remember to bring the type of socks or stockings you usually wear, as well as any orthotics you’re using when you go shoe-shopping.

When to Replace Your Diabetic Shoes

It’s a good idea to replace your shoes every two years. Of course, if you use your pair every day, you might have to replace them sooner.

Also if you’re seeing signs such as collapsed heels, worn down heels, and torn inner lining, you don’t need to wait. You can replace your pair as soon as possible.

Ready to Buy Diabetic Footwear?

Great! But if you have other questions, it’s best to ask a podiatrist in your area. Not only can he or she help you find the right pairs to wear, they can also give you self-management tips to prevent foot problems.

Got other concerns and questions? You can call our office +1-626-385-3338 or email us at info@youreverystep.com.

5 Benefits of Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis

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Why You Should Consider Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis

Approximately 1 in 10 people will experience plantar fasciitis during their life. Plantar fasciitis is painful, frustrating, and can be extremely difficult to get rid of.

It can also lead to more severe injuries including arthritis, back problems, and ankle injuries.

If you’re experiencing heel pain, then keep reading to learn how orthotics for plantar fasciitis can help.

1. Reduce Impact

Orthotics work to prevent and heal plantar fasciitis by reducing the impact shock of walking and running. The cushion absorbs most of the impact shock before it hits the souls of the feet.

This method provides extra comfort and support, too.

Orthotics for plantar fasciitis also make sure your weight is distributed evenly over your feet. When you have high arches or flat feet (fallen arches), your weight is not distributed evenly throughout the foot. This causes overuse of certain ligaments and bones, which can lead to pain and injury.

With orthotics insoles, your feet are evenly supported so no straining or stressing will occur.

2. Prevent Pain

Orthotics not only help prevent heel pain from plantar fasciitis. They help reduce pain in many areas of the body.

Orthotics help to align the feet properly and distribute weight evenly. This, in turn, aligns the ankles, knees, and spine, too.

Plantar fasciitis patients often have issues with the alignment and placement of their feet. Thus, they may experience pain in other areas, too.

So, orthotics can reduce and prevent all the pain associated with plantar fasciitis. No more worrying about numerous pain relief methods.

3. Better Balance

Orthotics for plantar fasciitis are a lifesaver when it comes to athletic performance and simply balance. It is difficult to balance when your weight is not evenly distributed in your feet.

Being off-balance is dangerous, as it can lead to falls and injuries, and it also hinders performance.

Throw in some orthotic insoles and you’ll be able to get back to yourself again.

4. Correct Supination

As briefly noted, orthotics are beneficial for other parts of the body besides the feet. Supination is the term given when ankles tilt outward due to high arches and plantar fasciitis.

Orthotics will help support the foot so that your balance is evenly distributed and your ankles can get back in alignment. This will prevent injury and also help align the knees and hips.

5. Correct Pronation

Pronation is what happens when ankles lean into the middle of the body due to flat feet and plantar fasciitis. Pronation is one of the largest factors in knee injuries and arthritis.

Using orthotics can re-align your ankles as your soles become even. Using orthotic insoles will prevent injuries and pain for your feet, ankles, and knees.

Talk to Us About Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis Today

At PFAA, we offer comprehensive care for all your foot health needs, including orthotics for plantar fasciitis. We custom order orthotics for our patients with plantar fasciitis based on the biomechanics of your foot.

Schedule an appointment with our podiatrists today. We accept new patients and most insurance plans.

5 Tips for Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

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5 Tips for Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

Up to seven out of 10 people with diabetes deal with neuropathy, which can lead to severe pain.

Peripheral neuropathy, the most common in diabetics, typically begins in the legs and feet. This is a reason why those who suffer from diabetic neuropathy are two to three times more likely to experience falls than other diabetics.

Having trouble finding diabetic foot pain relief? Keep reading to learn what steps you can take to enjoy a more pain-free lifestyle.

1. Take the Right Supplements

Low levels of vitamin D are common in diabetics suffering from peripheral neuropathy. Since it’s tough to get your daily recommended amount of vitamin D from your diet, it may be necessary to start supplementing.

Meanwhile, B complex vitamins fight inflammation and promote nerve damage repair. Leafy green vegetables and beef are both high in B complex vitamins.

It may be a good idea to try other natural anti-inflammatories such as omega-3 and alpha lipoic acid as well.

2. Say Goodbye to Smoking

There are many diabetic products that help provide diabetic foot pain relief. But if you’re a smoker, a good way to start getting immediate relief is by kicking the habit.

Nicotine in cigarettes constricts blood vessels and can damage arteries. Therefore, diabetics who smoke actually prevent blood from getting to their limbs, which can contribute to the pain.

By quitting smoking, you improve the circulation in your legs and feet.

3. Exercise Regularly

Believe it or not, there’s evidence showing that exercise mitigates neuropathic pain. It accomplishes this by reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines.

But there are even more ways that exercise helps diabetic foot pain sufferers. Regular exercise can lower your blood sugar and improve your blood circulation.

You can start taking advantage of its benefits by going on short walks every day. However, if you want an intense but joint-friendly workout, try swimming.

4. Enjoy Warm Baths

Research shows that passive heating dilates blood vessels and boosts peripheral circulation. This means that enjoying a warm bath is not only relaxing, but it may also fight against diabetic foot pain.

If you don’t find baths particularly appealing, you can opt for a warm foot soak instead. It will provide similar benefits.

5. Keep Your Stress and Anxiety Levels in Check

Do you find yourself stressed out all the time?

Well, your foot might be suffering as a result. High stress and anxiety levels can actually worsen your pain.

Getting a hold of your stress levels starts with adequate rest and exercise. But you don’t have to stop there.

If massages relax you, feel free to indulge in them when you get the chance. Breathing exercises and meditation may also reduce your stress hormone levels.

Final Thoughts on Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

It’s important to keep in mind that, like with diabetes, a cure for peripheral neuropathy doesn’t currently exist. Any pain medication you take won’t treat the nerve damage itself. But you can manage the pain by employing some of the tips outlined above.

Looking for even more ways to relieve your diabetic foot pain? If so, make sure to check our list of services today.

How to Find the Best Podiatrist in Your Area


How to Find the Best Podiatrist in Your Area

When you think about all the time we spend on our feet, it’s no wonder that so many people experience foot pain. Daily activity can put stress on this part of the body, and certain health issues like diabetes can also cause foot problems.

Taking care of your feet should be a health priority, and there are lots of things you can do to ensure foot health. Most importantly, if you do experience issues with your feet, you need to book an appointment with a podiatrist.

Finding the best podiatrist in your area doesn’t have to be a daunting task, and the sooner you book an appointment, the sooner you’ll be on the road to recovery.

Below, we’re sharing a few tips on how you can find the podiatrist that will work best for you so you can get back on your feet–literally.

Read on to learn more.

1. Online Resources

Finding the best podiatrist for you could be as simple as spending some time on the Internet. There are a lot of online resources that will help you locate what podiatrists are in your area.

Podiatric associations can be a good place to start. They typically keep a database of podiatrists who are members of their organization, and make it easy for patients to search podiatrists in their area.

Most pediatric associations will require podiatrists to adhere to a code of ethics as well, so any doctor you find through that resource should deliver the highest quality patient care.

2. Former Patients

Because foot problems are so common–especially among athletes or those with similar medical conditions–you probably know someone who has been to a podiatrist in your area.

Don’t be afraid to reach out to former patients to ask them about their experience with a particular podiatrist. Many will be happy to share. Whether they had a good experience or a bad one, they can help you make an informed decision.

3. Ask Questions

In order to determine if a particular podiatrist will be right for you, you need to have as much information about them and their practice as possible.

Create a list of questions that you want answered, so you can compare all of your options. For example, do they accept your insurance? Do they provide the specific services you need? What is their expertise or training in a particular area?

You should also pay attention to their attitude in answering your questions. Friendly staff who are happy to provide you with the information you request will likely make for a better medical team.

Ready to Book an Appointment with the Best Podiatrist in Your Area?

No one ever wants to have to visit the doctor. But if you do have a foot problem that requires a podiatrist’s attention, you want to do everything you can to ensure you’re getting the best care possible.

Do your research and ask questions so that you can find the podiatrist who will get you on your way to a fast recovery. For more information or to book an appointment, please contact us at any time.

5 Things to Immediately Do After a Foot Sprain

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5 Things to Immediately Do After a Foot Sprain

A foot sprain can be as painful as a break but rather than involving the bones it’s an injury to the ligaments. Rolling, twisting, or turning of the ankle can lead to a sprain.

The ligaments on the outside of the ankles are the most common ones affected by this injury. The ligaments tear and stretch when the ankle is rolled, twisted or turned in an unnatural way.

Initial treatment and first aid for a foot sprain are important. They can help you avoid further damage or injury to the ankle.

Keep reading to know the five most important things to do to treat a sprained ankle.

Symptoms of a Foot Sprain

It’s always a good idea to have your injury evaluated by a doctor. This will ensure you’re providing the proper care and treatment.

If there are no complications from foot sprain you will likely heal with self-care. Consult a doctor if you have any concerns or questions. A doctor can diagnose the injury and confirm the best course of treatment.

The signs and symptoms of a foot sprain may include:

  • discomfort particularly when putting weight on the injured ankle
  • swelling and bruising
  • tenderness when touched
  • sudden pain or popping sensation at the time of injury
  • smaller range of motion and instability

Take note of any new sensations, pain or difficulties experienced after injury.

If you are diabetic make sure you perform a diabetic foot exam. It’s particularly important to be proactive in foot care when dealing with diabetes. Ensure there are no cuts or skin tears that may affect your overall health.

Once you know it’s a sprain you can take some initial steps to care for it.

Many know the prescribed course of treatment for a foot sprain as R.I.C.E.

1. Rest

The strained ligaments need to rest so they can heal. Limit any weight-bearing activities. This can be done through the use of crutches.

Avoid putting any pressure on the affected ankle until it no longer hurts to do so.

2. Ice

Apply ice as soon as possible after the injury. This will help keep swelling down. It’s good to ice it for approximately 15-20 minutes several times a day for the first few days after hurting it.

After a couple days of icing, you should find that swelling has gone down and the ankle is stronger.

Continue to ice four to eight times a day but avoid using any longer than 20 minutes at a time. Icing for too long can cause tissue damage.

3. Compression

Immediately after suffering a foot sprain applying compression is important to minimize swelling. If a compression bandage is not available find another way to provide compression. It can be as simple as tying your shoe tight to apply pressure.

Many people make the mistake of taking their shoe off when they hurt their ankle. They are unable to get it back on because it swells up. High top shoes work well in this situation.

Compression socks are an option if you don’t have shoes or a compression bandage on the injury.

4. Elevate

Elevating the ankle above the heart can reduce swelling and pain. This is especially true when sleeping at night. Use pillows to prop your ankle up allowing fluids to drain and swelling to go down.

This will also help reduce throbbing and pain sensations.

Manage Pain and Monitor Progress

Over the counter pain medications such as Ibuprofen, Advil, naproxen or Tylenol can reduce pain. Use as directed when experiencing discomfort.

Always ensure you consult a doctor about any medications you wish to take. Mention all herbal, OTC or prescribed medications you are currently taking to avoid contraindicated complications.

Prevention Is the Best Medicine

The best way to treat a foot sprain is to prevent it from happening in the first place and avoiding reinjury.

  • Proper footwear for the activity. Good support for the ankle.
  • warm up before physical activity
  • keep muscles limber and strong
  • avoid heels or shoes that don’t fit properly

You don’t have to avoid the things you love to do. You just have to be smart about how you do them.

Check out our blog to learn more about caring for your feet

How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

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How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

In the United States, an estimated 7 million people suffer from a condition called hammer toe. If you are suffering from this problem, you may be wondering how you can correct it. It’s worth exploring hammer toe treatment options, as it can bring long-term relief to the issue.

You don’t have to give over control of your life to reverse the effects of this disorder. There is a solution out there for you ranging from something simple like getting a new pair of shoes, to surgery.

Let’s explore the causes of hammer toe as well as find the right treatment options for you.

What is Hammer Toe?

If you want to understand hammer toe treatment options, it helps to understand how this disorder occurs in the first place. When the deformity develops it happens in the second, third, or fourth toe on either foot.

The toe ends up bending around the middle joint and gains an awkward curvature. The name “hammer toe” comes from the shape the toe takes on after the curve worsens.

Causes

This foot deformity can happen due to a number of circumstances. To understand what kind of treatment method you need it is crucial that you think about how your hammer toe occurred.

Some of the leading causes include:

  • A serious foot injury
  • Wearing shoes that do not fit
  • Constant tension in foot muscles
  • Bunions
  • An arching foot

Hammer Toe Treatment Options

Aside from how your hammer toe occurred, you should also consider the severity of the bend. Treatment will depend on how bad the issue had progressed.

In mild cases, the curvature of the toe can get corrected through simple foot exercises such as picking up small marbles with the toes and changing shoe types. Your best bet is to look for shoes that have plenty of room in the front.

The extra room will allow you to exercise your toes in your shoe and help straighten your toes back out. It is recommended that you shoe inserts to help reduce pain and inflammation during the healing process.

Serious Cases

In serious cases of hammer toe, surgery is the most logical answer. There’s a variety of different surgery types for people looking for a solution to their physical ailment.

One such surgery is an Arthroplasty. This procedure involves removing about half of the joint from the toe so that it can get repositioned and go back to its normal spot.

Some people seek surgery as an option if they are unable to handle the pain that comes with hammer toe. On the other hand, others opt for surgery if they are self-conscious about the appearance of their feet.

Regardless of the reason, surgery is a viable treatment option for those who have severe hammer toe.

What’s Next?

Are you currently suffering from hammer toe and don’t know what to do next? Don’t worry; you’re not alone.

Contact us today so we can help assess your situation. We offer a variety of solutions no matter how the issue started or how severe it has become.

How to Identify and Treat a Sprained Ankle

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How to Identify and Treat a Sprained Ankle

Do you think that you sprained an ankle?

Is your ankle swollen and bruised? Can you place weight on it?

These are just a few of the symptoms of a sprained ankle. In fact, 2 million Americans suffer from an acute ankle injury each year.

Ankle injuries account for roughly 20% of all injuries suffered in amateur sports.

If your ankle injury is not properly identified and treated, it could lead to chronic issues.

Read on to learn how to identify a sprained ankle and the anticipated treatment plan for such an injury.

How do Sprained Ankles Typically Occur?

Sprained ankles frequently happen while running or playing sports. The injury itself occurs during the rapid movements involved with these activities.

A sprained ankle can also happen accidentally through a misstep.

More specifically, the injury is sustained when the foot is planted and the ankle rolls over outward or inward.

When the ankle rolls over, ligaments on the outside or inside of the ankle stretch and tear. In some cases, you may physically feel the tear or hear a pop.

This will cause immediate and excruciating pain.

What are the Symptoms of a Sprained Ankle?

You will know the second you sprained an ankle. In addition to the pain, walking will be a challenge as you will be hard pressed to put any weight on the ankle.

Shortly after the injury occurs, swelling will begin with bruising to follow. Routine movements may be painful and the ankle tender to touch.

What Should you do Immediately After the Injury?

If an athletic trainer is present, the first course of action may be to apply a compression wrap. This is intended to limit swelling, which in turn, may help the ankle feel better later.

Without the help of a trainer, a common mistake that is made is removing the shoe. On the other hand, you should tighten the shoelaces to apply compression. This works especially well with high top basketball shoes.

Once you are in a position to rest, it is time to ice and elevate the ankle. When you aren’t icing, compression wrap is still beneficial.

Ultimately, the best way for the ankle to heal is to stay off of it.

When Should You Seek Medical Attention?

The severity of the ankle injury will dictate whether a visit to the doctor is necessary. If the pain persists and is not improving with ice and rest, medical attention is warranted.

At this point, there is a potential that the ankle is fractured and not sprained. X-rays may be required on the ankle to rule out a fracture.

If an ankle sprain is confirmed, the doctor may recommend wearing compression socks or an ankle brace while working or doing light activity.

Wrapping It Up

As alluded to earlier, the best way to recover from an ankle sprain is rest. Staying off the ankle will allow the body to naturally repair the torn ligaments.

Ice, compression, and elevation are also part of the treatment process.

If you have any additional questions about sprained ankles, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.

4 Diabetes Products to Help Relieve Your Foot Pain

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4 Diabetes Products to Help Relieve Your Foot Pain

As a diabetic, you have to be constantly mindful of what you put into your body. And, if you have some form of neuropathy, you need to stay on top of managing your symptoms. 

You’re not alone in managing neuropathy. About 60-70% of diabetics have some form of neuropathy according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. 

If you have peripheral neuropathy, you likely have pain in your fingers, legs, and feet. You can usually manage the pain by getting your diet under control, exercising, and quitting smoking. 

But, there are some days when even naturally managing your diabetic foot pain isn’t enough. On those days, you need diabetes products to help relieve your foot pain.

Here are some products to help treat your foot pain.

Diabetic Shoes

When you have peripheral neuropathy, you should avoid walking around barefoot. The risk is too great that you will open a new wound on your foot and not realize it.

Diabetic socks are made of anti-bacterial fibers which are designed to wick away moisture from your feet. They also help reduce rubbing and irritation which can cause blisters.

Diabetic shoes and insoles mold to your feet to provide exactly the right support. Having the right shoes reduces pinching which can lead to foot ulcers.

Compression Socks and Stockings

Diabetic foot pain is caused largely by the weakening of the veins in your legs. The vein walls become too loose to let blood circulate back up your legs, so unoxygenated blood pools in your feet. 

Compression socks and stockings put a slight pressure on your legs, and by extension, your veins, to give them the support they need to carry blood from your feet to your lungs.

Like many diabetic products, there is no one size fits all solution for compression socks. Speak to your doctor about the level of pressure you need in compression socks. 

Capsaicin Cream

A capsaicin cream is a topical treatment applied to the skin. The main ingredient in capsaicin creams is a compound found in hot peppers. 

When applied to the skin, capsaicin first stimulates the nerve endings, which can cause a brief jump in pain. This stimulation is followed by decreasing intensity of the pain as the capsaicin starts to block signals in the nerve endings.

In a study of 252 individuals, 58.4% of patients reported an improvement in pain relief by applying a capsaicin cream. 

While you can pick up a capsaicin cream at your local drugstore, check with your doctor before using one. Capsaicin can react with other drugs and irritate your skin. 

OTC Pain Relief

For days when you have mild nerve pain from diabetes, over the counter pain relievers are a good option for finding relief. Many diabetes patients will turn to their regular painkillers like Advil or Tylenol. 

If you find you’re taking these OTC painkillers too frequently, you should speak to your doctor about other medications you can take. If your pain level is high, your doctor might prescribe an antidepressant or anti-seizure medication, both of which help with pain management. 

Ask Your Doctor About the Best Diabetes Products For You

Before you select new diabetes products to try, you should consult your regular physician and podiatrist first. 

If you’re looking for expert advice on incorporating new diabetes products into your treatment, schedule an appointment with us today.

Why Do My Heels Hurt? Questions For Your Doctor

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Why Do My Heels Hurt? Questions For Your Doctor

Are you feeling pain in your heels when you walk or run? Is there a distinctive tingling or burning in your pedestrian support system? 

Heel pain can be incredibly obtrusive and can be debilitating to your day to day. There are a plethora of problems that involve the feet as we get older. 

The good news is that many of those problems actually have solutions and explanations. If you’re asking yourself, “Why do my heels hurt?”, then consider a few of these questions and do some prep-work before seeing your doctor.

Here’s a list of questions for your doctor regarding heel pain:

1. What Is The Right Kind Of Shoe For Me

Whether you’re a gym fanatic who runs a lot or live in a big city and walk plenty, a good pair of shoes can save you. Different shoes are made to create support for different parts of your foot based on the activity of the user. 

When choosing a shoe, it is important to take into consideration every detail of how the shoe is constructed and where the support system within the shoe lies. Some people prefer the more barefoot feeling approach, while others require heavy cushion under their feet on a daily basis. 

Whatever your activities are, asking “Why do my heels hurt?” on a daily basis means you probably need new shoes. A doctor or foot specialist can point you in the right direction. 

2. Ask “Why Do My Heels Hurt?”

Is It Because of Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis occurs when there is extreme overuse of the heel and could leave you asking “Why do my heels hurt?” It isn’t completely uncommon either, as 1 in 10 people will develop plantar fasciitis in their lifetime. 

If left untreated this can become a major issue for your feet. Ask your doctor about plantar fasciitis and they’ll be able to tell you if you suffer from it. If it isn’t taken care of, it can make for a very serious situation and even lead to heel spurs.

3. Ask About Heel Spurs

Heel spurs are bony structures that grow from the heel bone area. They create major pain in the heels. If you’ve been dealing with heel pain for a long time and possibly plantar fasciitis but didn’t know it, you may have created a space for heel spurs.

Heel spurs often require surgery and can slow your life down for some time. The key is to have your heels evaluated before it is too late.

4. Do I have Bursitis? 

Bursitis is the deepening of the bursa. In the foot atrium, there is a pillow-like sac that bonds with the bone or curves around it. The atrium is like a bean bag that gives cushion to the bond and the bone.

If there is an abrasion or heavy burden consistently on it, the sac will become afflicted and unhealthy, which creates a lot of pain. 

5. Do I Walk or Run Correctly?

Yes, there is a proper way to walk, run, and even stand. If you’ve got poor running posture you can absolutely be putting more pressure than is necessary on your heels. 

With an evaluation from your doctor or physical therapist, you can learn to evenly distribute your weight and pressure when walking or running. 

For more info on optimal foot and ankle care, call our office +1-626-385-3338 – or – request an appointment!