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Monday, 16 September 2019 00:00

What Are Orthotics?

Patients who have chronic foot pain may have considered wearing orthotics. They are defined as inserts that are worn inside the shoe, and may be beneficial in controlling specific types of foot pain. Orthotics are used to redistribute the weight of the body which may be helpful in relieving pain and discomfort. Patients who choose to wear orthotics may be afflicted with rheumatoid arthritis, plantar fasciitis, and find that continually wearing these custom made inserts can provide all or partial relief. If you have a foot condition that may benefit from wearing orthotics, it is advised that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly fit you for these inserts.

If you are having discomfort in your feet and would like to try orthotics, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Are Orthotics?

Orthotics are inserts you can place into your shoes to help with a variety of foot problems such as flat feet or foot pain. Orthotics provide relief and comfort for minor foot and heel pain but can’t correct serious biomechanical problems in your feet.

Over-the-Counter Inserts

Orthotics come in a wide variety of over-the-counter inserts that are used to treat foot pain, heel pain, and minor problems. For example, arch supports can be inserted into your shoes to help correct overarched or flat feet, while gel insoles are often used because they provide comfort and relief from foot and heel pain by alleviating pressure.

Prescription Orthotics

If over-the-counter inserts don’t work for you or if you have a more severe foot concern, it is possible to have your podiatrist prescribe custom orthotics. These high-quality inserts are designed to treat problems such as abnormal motion, plantar fasciitis, and severe forms of heel pain. They can even be used to help patients suffering from diabetes by treating foot ulcers and painful calluses and are usually molded to your feet individually, which allows them to provide full support and comfort.

If you are experiencing minor to severe foot or heel pain, it’s recommended to speak with your podiatrist about the possibilities of using orthotics. A podiatrist can determine which type of orthotic is right for you and allow you to take the first steps towards being pain-free.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Orthotics
Monday, 09 September 2019 00:00

Possible Causes of Flat Feet

The medical term that is referred to as “pes planus” is more commonly known as flat feet. It essentially means the feet have little or no arch, and this may contribute to an overall feeling of tiredness in the feet. Genetic factors may play a significant role in the development of flat feet, in addition to wearing shoes which may include high heels that can limit toe movement. Moderate relief can be found when gentle stretching techniques are frequently performed, and this may also help to strengthen the Achilles tendon. This may be instrumental in elongating the calf muscles which can be linked to helping flat feet. If you are experiencing foot pain as a result of having flat feet, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who may recommend custom made orthotics that may help to provide relief.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor 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 Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What is Flexible Flat Foot?
Monday, 02 September 2019 00:00

What Causes Heel Spurs?

The condition that is known as a heel spur can cause pain and discomfort. It happens as a result of a calcium deposit that forms between the arch and the heel of the foot. The symptoms that are often associated with this condition can include difficulty in walking barefoot, pain in the heel and surrounding areas, and swelling and inflammation. It can develop with muscle and ligament tension, which may cause the soft tissues to wear out. People who frequently participate in sporting activities that involve running and jumping may be prone to developing heel spurs. It is beneficial to wear shoes that have adequate cushioning in the heel area, in addition to resting and elevating the foot as often as possible. If you have developed a heel spur, it is advised that you speak to a podiatrist who can recommend treatment options that are correct for you.

Heel spurs can be incredibly painful and sometimes may make you unable to participate in physical activities. To get medical care for your heel spurs, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will do everything possible to treat your condition.

Heels Spurs

Heel spurs are formed by calcium deposits on the back of the foot where the heel is. This can also be caused by small fragments of bone breaking off one section of the foot, attaching onto the back of the foot. Heel spurs can also be bone growth on the back of the foot and may grow in the direction of the arch of the foot.

Older individuals usually suffer from heel spurs and pain sometimes intensifies with age. One of the main condition's spurs are related to is plantar fasciitis.

Pain

The pain associated with spurs is often because of weight placed on the feet. When someone is walking, their entire weight is concentrated on the feet. Bone spurs then have the tendency to affect other bones and tissues around the foot. As the pain continues, the feet will become tender and sensitive over time.

Treatments

There are many ways to treat heel spurs. If one is suffering from heel spurs in conjunction with pain, there are several methods for healing. Medication, surgery, and herbal care are some options.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Heel Spurs
Monday, 26 August 2019 00:00

Achilles Tendon and Overuse

The Achilles tendon is known to be the largest tendon in the body. It connects the calf muscles to the heel, and it enables us to walk and perform running and jumping activities. Tendonitis may develop as a result of gradual damage that can stem from overuse. Patients who experience this type of injury typically have pain and discomfort in their calf and heel area. Additionally, it may be difficult to flex the foot, and there can be tenderness upon arising in the morning. Many patients may find relief by performing certain stretches that can strengthen the calf muscles. It may also be beneficial to wear orthotics as they can help heal an Achilles tendon injury. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which typically consists of having and MRI or X-ray taken, the correct treatment methods can begin. If you have endured this type of injury, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer you the best treatment options.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames of Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

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

Read more about Achilles Tendon Injuries
Saturday, 24 August 2019 00:00

Before you start dancing...

 

Monday, 19 August 2019 00:00

What Are PRP Injections?

PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma. Now you may be thinking, what is platelet-rich plasma? Platelets are blood cells and they have several roles to play in the human body. For one, platelets cause blood clots, and they are also necessary for growth healing functions. Plasma is the liquid portion of blood. PRP therapy uses injections of a concentration of a patient’s own platelets to speed up the healing of injured ligaments, tendons, muscles and joints. This way, PRP injections only use your own healing system to improve musculoskeletal problems. Costs for PRP treatments are reported to run between $500 and $2,000. If you have pain in your Achilles tendon, or in other areas, PRP injections could potentially benefit you. Please consult with your local podiatrist for more information.

If you are suffering from a foot condition, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames of Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

What Is PRP?

Platelet Rich Plasma, or PRP, is blood taken from a patient and spun in a centrifuge, concentrating the amount of platelets. The plasma is then re-injected into the site of injury or damage, assisting the body in repairing damage to muscles, tendons, ligaments, and tissue. PRP helps the body speed up its healing process.

Uses of PRP

Injuries affecting the foot sometimes don’t heal properly because of poor blood circulation. The healing time slows down, and recovery time is affected by poor blood supply. PRP injections will speed up recovery and resolve this issue.

Treatment

PRP is the first regenerative treatment for damaged muscles, tendons, and ligaments. No surgery needed. It is only applied with an insertion of a needle.

Ultrasound – An ultrasound is needed for proper placement of the platelets.

Injection – When the first injection is received, the patient will return to the doctor in about 2 to 3 weeks and monitor the recovery process.

Recovery time – Some people respond to treatments differently. Therefore, depending on your condition, the doctor will make any remaining decisions on how many more injections are needed, or if any additional ones are even required.

Benefits

One may be able to avoid major surgery, and recovery time will be cut down. PRP injections also avoid creating scar tissue and damage to the area. Risks are also very low using PRP as a treatment. There is no risk of rejection, contracting a disease from using another person’s blood, or infection.

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

Read more about PRP Injections in the Feet

If there are weakened muscles in your toes, a medical condition that is referred to as hammertoe may develop. This can cause the tendons in the toes to become shorter, and they may bend downward, resembling a hammer. The toes that are typically affected are the second and third toes, but it may occur on any toe. It can be caused by genetic factors, or may happen from wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Patients who have hammertoe can experience difficulty in walking and flexing the feet, and corns and calluses may develop on top of the toes. When shoes that are worn fit properly, this condition could be prevented. Additionally, some patients find mild relief when shoe inserts or toe pads are worn. If you are afflicted with hammertoe, it is strongly suggested that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly treat this uncomfortable condition.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Hammertoe
Monday, 05 August 2019 00:00

Possible Causes Of Cracked Heels

Cracked heels are a common foot condition, especially during the summer months. This can be a result of wearing shoes that have an open back, which typically provides inadequate support for the heel of the foot. The skin can become dry, and deep cracks that are known as fissures may form. Additional reasons why this condition may develop can include standing for extended periods of time throughout the day, excess weight the heels endure from being obese, and walking with a specific gait. Mild relief can be found when the feet are soaked in warm water, followed by using a good moisturizer frequently during the day. Research has indicated the importance of wearing shoes that fit properly, as this can be helpful in preventing cracked heels. If you are suffering from this ailment, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward the correct treatment.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. 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 our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels

When the feet are properly cared for on a daily basis, certain foot conditions may be prevented from occurring. Athlete’s foot may be avoided when the feet are washed and thoroughly dried daily, especially between the toes. When a good moisturizer is applied, it may help to prevent cracked heels from developing. The importance of trimming the toenails properly is necessary in possibly preventing the painful condition known as ingrown toenails. Additionally, the feet will feel more comfortable when the correct size shoe is worn, and this can be accomplished if shoes are tried on in the afternoon when the feet are their largest. If you would like additional information about how to maintain proper foot care, it is advised to seek the counsel of a podiatrist.

Everyday foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Everyday Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. Without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks.

It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before. For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops. Wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent Athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

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

Read more about Everyday Foot Care
Thursday, 25 July 2019 00:00

Wounds that Don't Heal Need to be Checked

Your feet are covered a good part of the day. If you are diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often another sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

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