Top tips for foot care for runners

The most common foot problems associated with jogging or running are blisters, corns, calluses, athlete’s foot, shin splints, Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis. Below are some important prevention-minded foot care tips for runners.

Top tips for foot care for runners:

  • Keep your feet and shoes powdered, this will absorb moisture and reduce friction.
  • Wear clean socks every time you run.
  • Make sure your shoes fit properly. Bring your insert when shopping and make sure it fits the shoe you are considering purchasing.
  • Let your body be your guide so you don’t strain your feet or joints; don’t try to run through pain.
  • Shoes should provide cushioning for shock absorption.
  • Prevent Achilles tendonitis by always stretching your lower leg muscles before and after every workout.
  • Wear shoes made out of breathable materials such as canvas or leather.

It is inevitable for runners to get injured, so have your chiropodist assess your feet to guide you to choose the right foot care regimen, give you tips on preventing injuries and guide you to help handle foot-related injuries.

To arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at 519-623-3000 in Cambridge or 905-878-6479 in Milton. Visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Ingrown nails – solutions you need to know

An ingrown nail usually affects the big toe, causing redness, warmth and swelling, although it can also occur in other toes as well. This condition occurs when your nail grows into your skin tissue, irritating and inflaming the skin and possibly opening the door to infection. As the nail cuts into your skin, it can irritate the nerves and can trigger shooting pains. Even though it may seem like a small issue, it can really affect your day-to-day mobility, activities and enjoyment.

Causes and associations:

You may not realize that poor nail trimming technique and tight or narrow-fitting shoes are the most frequent causes of ingrown nails. When caring for your nails, it is important to cut straight across the nail and avoid leaving a curve at the side edges of the nail. Cut your nails frequently and leave some nail to overhang slightly; that is, if they are too short or too long, they can tend to grow inward. When choosing your foot wear, make sure there is enough room in the toe area.

There are many other factors that predispose you to develop an ingrown nail: repeated foot trauma or injuries, excessive foot sweating, fungal nail or other foot problems, diabetes, obesity and arthritis.

Ingrown nail treatment options: 

Surgery can be avoided with proper ongoing care. A chiropodist has the expertise to guide you for the treatment that best suits the situation. If your nail is mildly ingrown, the chiropodist can trim the nail and lift the free edge gently and support it with sterile cotton until the swelling reduces.

Alternatively, for more advanced situations, a minor surgery can be done to remove part of, or the entire nail. Women often appreciate partial nail removal, to allow them to keep the nail. Chiropodists are experts at these procedures and can assure the problem does not recur.

To arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot & Orthotics at one of our two locations: 519-623-3000 in Cambridge or 905-878-6479 in Milton. You can also visit us at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Over-the-counter shoe inserts vs. custom prescription orthotics

When you have discomfort in your feet, it’s only natural to look for solutions. Some will try over-the-counter (OTC) foot inserts to try and get relief, while others seek professional advice from a foot care specialist and get a custom solution, prescription orthotics.

A store bought insert/insole usually provides cushioning, or has pre-moulded arch support and can assist in correcting foot structure. However, despite relieving mild to moderate discomforts, such inserts can increase foot problems as they wear down, so it is important to replace them regularly. What has also been commonly found is that each of your feet can be unique from each other, so each may have different support requirements. So how is it possible that a standard OTC foot insert solves different problems uniquely appearing in each foot? Keep in mind that if there is inadequate support, other problems can develop.

The best route to take is to see your registered foot care specialist. A chiropodist will assess the needs of each of your feet and recommend a custom solution that also suits your lifestyle, work requirements and the type of exercise that you enjoy the most. Your chiropodist may recommend either non-custom inserts, or prescription orthotics. It would depend on your unique needs and your budget. Prescription foot orthotics are covered by most extended health insurance benefit plans and best solve your foot problem for a long term solution.

In addition to obtaining the proper supportive orthotics, your chiropodist will also make preventive suggestions to optimize your foot health. This may include advice on which style of shoe best fits your feet, foot care instructions, sports medicine and much more.

For more information, or to arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at 519-623-3000 in Cambridge or 905-878-6479 in Milton. Visit us at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Take action against bunions on your feet, avoid future pain

It happened to your mother and now it’s happening to you…bunions. A bunion is a condition that affects the bones and joints of the great toe. It appears as a bony prominence on the inside margin of your forefoot, which can get red, swollen and painful. It stands out in the painful grimace on your face by the end of the work day. Or it stands out in the way you alter your walking style to reduce the discomfort felt in your foot. It also stands out in how you avoid standing for too long, or avoid going to the mall, since there’s so much walking at the mall.

It’s a common problem; roughly thirty percent of the population suffers from bunions. Bunions arise due to abnormal foot function, leading to a gradual dislocation of the joint. They can also relate to heredity, different forms of arthritis, narrow-toed shoes and high heels and other foot-related problems. Bunions can also occur on the small toe side, commonly called bunionettes. Either way, they often worsen and may require surgery, unless you take action.

Simple ways to reduce the pain is by applying a cold pack to the area a few times a day, though many resort to pain medications. Choosing shoes with heels less than two inches high helps, as well as wider fitting shoes, though any shoe or slipper lacking proper support can aggravate bunions. The best course of action to resolve the problem that is causing the deformation is to visit your foot care specialist. A qualified chiropodist will assess your particular situation and make corrective suggestions. Some common suggestions from a chiropodist include proper fitting footwear to alleviate pressure, bunion shield pads, or prescription orthotics, which stabilizes the foot and minimizes stresses on the affected joints.

To arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at 905-878-6479 in Milton. Visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Understanding and dealing with a hammertoe on your foot

A hammertoe is a foot condition affecting the second, third, or fourth toes. In this condition, the toe is bent at the middle joint, causing it to resemble a hammer. The toe buckles due to abnormal contraction, from a partial or complete dislocation of one of the joints of the toe.

It is common that people who suffer from a hammertoe also develop painful corns on the top of the affected toe, where it rubs against the inside of the shoe. This pain may be resolved by adding extra cushioning, regularly trimming down the corn, or by choosing roomier shoes.

A hammertoe is caused by foot imbalances and heredity factors. Certainly wearing high heels aggravates the hammertoe since heels accentuate the contracted position of the hammertoe. Tight-fitting stockings can also aggravate the condition.

Your chiropodist will assess your feet and determine the cause of the hammertoe and make useful suggestions. Some suggestions may include making silicone toe pads which can reduce pressure, or using a custom orthotic to better support your foot, which will also slow down the buckling process in a hammertoe. If the hammertoe is caught early enough, the above conservative chiropody care is sufficient. However, if it is allowed to progress, then there will be more pain, calluses, inflammation, possibly infection and alteration of the bone structure. In these cases, surgery may be required.

For more information, or to arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at 519-623-3000 in Cambridge or 905-878-6479 in Milton. Visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Proper treatment and prevention of corns and calluses on your feet

Many times a day, Chiropodists see patients with very rough and tough skin on their feet. In some cases they have already tried many over-the-counter products to burn or scrape off the dense skin tissue. They end up seeking professional help because their problems reoccur and they want a long-term solution. What they are usually suffering from is the pain from corns and calluses.

So what are corns and calluses? Corns and calluses are both forms of concentrated dead skin that form in areas where there is a lot of pressure or friction on the foot. Corns are denser and are inverted cones which are pushed into the skin, whereas calluses are more spread out and are appear as yellowish plaques. The pressure and skin reaction may be due to many factors such as poor-fitting shoes, high-heel shoe wear, abnormal gait or walking style that affects the pressure to the feet, protruding bones and particular skin conditions.

Chiropodists are the primary health care providers for foot care in Ontario. They are trained to properly assess and treat the feet and find lasting solutions to stop corns and calluses from continuing for once and for all. Some solutions to corns or calluses may be changing your foot wear choices. A Chiropodist may suggest how to resolve any walking abnormalities, also known as ‘biomechanical’ imbalances. They have additional training and expertise in biomechanical analysis and have really helped resolve long-standing foot issues, including corns and calluses and many other foot and movement-related problems.

For more information on relieving foot pain, or any other foot problem, or to book an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at one of our two locations: 519-623-3000 (Cambridge), 905-878-6479 (Milton). Or visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Compression therapy for your aching and swollen legs

If you stand or sit for long periods of time, you can develop aches in your legs, as well as swelling within your veins. Of course, many types of jobs involve standing or sitting and so this is quite a common problem. These situations, as well as extended airtravel, may predispose you to getting more pressure in your veins that can lead to swelling and even varicose veins. A simple solution is getting compression therapy, that is, properly fitted compression socks or hosiery. Compression therapy is the application of external pressure to promote better circulation through the veins, reducing swelling and the tired and achy feelings in your legs.

Compression stockings are not what they used to be. They are much more stylish, softer and more comfortable. Men can get compression dress socks and women can also get compression hosiery to fit casual, dress, or office attire. The most important point is to be properly fitted by a trained professional. Chiropodists are best suited to take accurate measurements and to fit them to match your leg. Many people who simply buy a product off the shelf may end up finding that when they get home, the product is too tight or too loose at different areas of their leg, or may not provide an adequate amount of pressure to resolve the symptoms. A chiropodist will also take the time to show you useful techniques, including care and how to put them on quickly and effectively.

To arrange an assessment, contact Ontario Foot & Orthotics at 905-878-6479 in Milton. You can also visit us at www.ontariofoot.ca.

Diabetes and the feet – Visit a chiropodist regularly for healthy feet.

Diabetes is on the rise in Canada. It’s a major illness that is affecting people at younger ages and people are living longer with diabetes. “Preventative care” is fundamental to living well with this illness. In diabetes, the whole body is affected, including the feet. As diabetes affects blood circulation and increases nerve sensitivity, feet are particularly prone to problems. It is very important for diabetics to clean their feet daily, to do a daily foot check and to have them checked regularly by a chiropodist, even though there may not be any problems obvious to you. For example, some signs to watch for and to act upon are itchiness, redness, bruising, burning, blisters, coolness, roughened areas, lack of sensitivity to temperature and of course any pain in the feet.

As trained chiropodists, your foot care specialists see a range of people with diabetes.

Some come for regular care of their foot-related concerns and problems such as poor circulation, foot pain, corns, calluses, fungal infections, etc. Some of our other patients with diabetes come in with low-grade sores and blisters. Others have more progressed ulcers, infections and even gangrene and are at risk of requiring surgical care. Whether it is you or a loved one that suffers from diabetes, chiropodists are specially trained in proper foot care for patients with diabetes, including proper wound treatment.

The chiropodists at Ontario Foot and Orthotics do full diabetic assessments and help you with your feet no matter what current state of health you are in with respect to your diabetes. Ontario Foot and Orthotics takes part in outreach diabetes-related events in the community.

For more information, or to book an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at 905-878-6479 in Milton Or visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca. Continue reading

Chiropodists provide solutions for your foot pain.

Have your feet ever ached? Of course, it’s the most common complaint Chiropodists hear in the office, when people come for a professional foot check-up. Tired feet and mild aches are quite common by the end of a long day at work, or after long shopping excursions, or after a good long walk. However, what if your foot aches and pains are regular, or even daily, or quite intense? That’s when it’s time to visit a professional for a full foot assessment.

If you experience pain while walking on hardwood or ceramic floors you may want to visit a Chiropodist. They treat patients with all types of foot problems, which cause a range of pains in the feet. There are many different solutions that they will recommend, based on the foot assessments they perform.

In some cases, the solution may involve using a different type of shoe. Perhaps the answer may be using orthotics – a custom insert to suit your foot structure and function. The foot pain may be due to an in-grown toe nail, an infection, chronic ankle sprains, or inflamed tissues. Whatever the cause, Ontario Foot and Orthotics will do their job to properly assess, treat, manage and resolve the source of your foot pain.

For more information, or to book an assessment, contact Ontario Foot and Orthotics at one of our two locations: 519-623-3000 (Cambridge), 905-878-6479 (Milton). Or visit us online at www.ontariofoot.ca.