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There are several ways seniors can practice proper foot care. These may include wearing shoes that fit correctly and are comfortable to wear during daily activities. It’s important the toes have adequate room to move around inside, and this may possibly avoid a pre-existing case of bunions from becoming worse. It may also prevent corns from developing. Additionally, performing a gentle exercise program frequently, may aid in keeping the blood flowing. These may include walking and stretching, which may help to maintain proper circulation. Washing the feet and drying thoroughly between the toes may be beneficial in preventing athlete’s foot from developing. When a moisturizing lotion is used, a painful condition referred to as cracked heels may be avoided. When the toenails are trimmed properly, occurrences of ingrown toenails may decrease. If you are a senior, it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist on a frequent basis to discuss any foot conditions that may be present.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, 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.

The Elderly and their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions 

  • Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet, and can hide many life threating medical conditions.
  • Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
  • Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
  • Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
  • Shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Pressure sores
  • Loss of circulation in legs & feet
  • Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

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 Elderly Foot Care
Monday, 17 September 2018 00:00

Pregnancy May Produce Unpleasant Foot Odor

Many pregnant women may suffer from unpleasant body odor, and this may especially affect the feet. Research has shown the feet may provide a prime environment for bacteria to grow, which may enable sweaty feet to absorb unpleasant odors. The majority of sweat is produced on the front of the foot, and this may be enhanced by wearing shoes with a closed toe. Additionally, if socks are worn for several hours, the hair that is present on the toes may not have adequate room to breath, and this may add to the intensity of the odor emanating from the feet. The additional weight that is typically gained during pregnancy may cause the feet to become larger, and as a result the existing shoes may fit tighter, causing the feet to sweat. It’s important to measure your feet frequently during pregnancy and to choose shoes that can accommodate the new size, which may aid in making your feet feel comfortable. Please consider speaking with a podiatrist if you are afflicted with an unpleasant foot odor during your pregnancy.

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 Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor 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 Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Care for Pregnant Women
Monday, 17 September 2018 00:00

What are the Symptoms of a Broken Toe?

There are several ways to incur a broken toe. Repetitive motions can cause a hairline fracture in the toe, in addition to dropping a heavy object on it. Some people may experience stubbing a toe, which is the result of hitting it against a hard surface. This may produce severe discomfort and pain, and a broken toe may be an unfortunate result. There are noticeable symptoms associated with a broken toe, including swelling, bruising and difficulty in walking. The toe may appear deformed, and this may depend upon the severity of the fracture. It’s important to have a proper diagnose performed, and this is often accomplished by having an X-Ray taken. Treatment of a broken toe may include taping it to the toe next to it, which is often referred to as buddy taping. It’s important to speak with a podiatrist as quickly as possible to learn about additional treatment options concerning a broken toe.

A broken toe can be very painful and lead to complications if not properly fixed. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What to Know About a Broken Toe

Although most people try to avoid foot trauma such as banging, stubbing, or dropping heavy objects on their feet, the unfortunate fact is that it is a common occurrence. Given the fact that toes are positioned in front of the feet, they typically sustain the brunt of such trauma. When trauma occurs to a toe, the result can be a painful break (fracture).

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Throbbing pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising on the skin and toenail
  • The inability to move the toe
  • Toe appears crooked or disfigured
  • Tingling or numbness in the toe

Generally, it is best to stay off of the injured toe with the affected foot elevated.

Severe toe fractures may be treated with a splint, cast, and in some cases, minor surgery. Due to its position and the pressure it endures with daily activity, future complications can occur if the big toe is not properly treated.

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 to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 10 September 2018 00:00

Symptoms and Causes of Flat Feet

Many people have a foot condition that is referred to as flat feet. This term is used if the patient has extremely low arches or the arch doesn't exist at all. The purpose of the arch is to aid in balancing the weight of the body as it extends to the feet and legs. The foot will benefit if the arch is flexible and strong, which may help in maintaining balance on different types of surfaces. There are several common symptoms that many patients are aware of including pain that may affect the entire foot and ankle, swelling on the inside of the foot, and a stiff feeling that may be experienced in one or both feet. Possible causes for this condition to develop may originate from an inherited trait, an injury that may have occurred to the foot or ankle, or a medical condition such as arthritis. A podiatrist can perform a correct diagnosis to determine the severity of this ailment in addition to discussing proper treatment techniques.

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 Flat Feet
Tuesday, 04 September 2018 00:00

Causes of an Achilles Tendon Rupture

The purpose of the Achilles tendon is to connect the heel bone to the calf muscles and it is considered to be the largest tendon in the body. The ability to point and flex the foot occurs naturally when the Achilles tendon contracts and this also enables people to walk, run, and stand on tiptoe with ease. If the patient should experience a tear in this tendon, this condition is referred to as an Achilles tendon rupture. General reasons for this to occur may include the tendon weakening with age, which may promote injury. It typically occurs when activities that are pursued require running and jumping, also when proper stretching is not practiced beforehand. Typical symptoms may include experiencing an immediate and severe pain in the back of the heel, as well as swelling and bruising. If you feel you have ruptured your Achilles tendon, please consult with a podiatrist to learn about correct treatment techniques.

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
Monday, 27 August 2018 00:00

Symptoms of a Heel Spur

A heel spur is defined as a small bony protrusion that extends from the heel to the sole of the foot. Typical reasons for the condition to develop may be due to an injury, which may tear a portion of the heel bone, muscle, or ligament strains. Hard calcium deposits may develop under the heel, gradually forming a heel spur. People who are overweight, or those who participate in running and jumping activities may be more susceptible in developing heel spurs, in addition to those patients who wear shoes that do not fit correctly. There are several symptoms that may accompany this ailment, including pain that is felt in the heel for the majority of the day, inflammation, and tenderness. If you feel you may have a heel spur, it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist, who can perform a proper diagnosis followed by advice on correct treatment options.

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 conditions 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 How to Treat Heel Spurs

Improper shoe fitting can lead to many problems such as bunions, corns, and hammertoe. ill-fitting shoes can also lead to muscular imbalances in the body, which can eventually lead to hip and knee injuries. A perfectly fitting shoe should not have any excess material that may interfere with the foot’s natural motion. Many runners tend to wear shoes that are too small for their feet. If you are looking to purchase a new pair of shoes, be aware of the fact that your foot is at its widest at the toes, even though many shoes are not. You should also be mindful of the fact that your foot will spread up to half an inch in length when you are running. If you are experiencing problems with your feet due to poorly fitting shoes, you may want to schedule an appointment with your podiatrist.

Finding a properly-fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor  will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in proper fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improper fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, properly-fitting shoes are vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

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 Proper Shoe Fitting
Monday, 13 August 2018 00:00

Possible Causes of Gout

A form of arthritis that attacks the joints in the big toe is often referred to as gout. This condition may typically occur abruptly, and obvious symptoms may include severe pain and discomfort, swollen joints, and redness. It develops as a result of excess uric acid in the blood, which can form crystals in the joints. This may occur because of specific foods that are ingested, including an overabundance of shellfish, alcohol, or red meat. Some patients may develop this ailment from inherited genes, being overweight, and taking certain medications. If you are afflicted by this type of arthritis, it’s important that it is treated as quickly as possible, to avoid the development of additional complications. Please speak with a podiatrist about the treatment options that are right for you.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is Gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.

People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.

Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.

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 Gout
Monday, 06 August 2018 00:00

How to Properly Stretch Your Toes

There are several benefits to the overall health of the feet when the toes are properly stretched. Toes may deform gradually over time as a result of several factors. These may include wearing shoes that are too snug for extended periods of time, improper use of the foot muscles while walking, or standing with the feet pointing outward, which puts pressure on the big toe. When the toes are stretched, the possibility of developing Athlete's foot may diminish as a result of adequate space between the toes. There are simple and effective toe stretches that can be performed daily for optimum results. These may include bending your toes downward to stretch the top of the foot, and taking each toe in your hands while pulling it away from the toe next to it. If you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching your toes, please consult with a podiatrist.

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous one, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising and ice and rest the foot. It is advised to then see a podiatrist for help.

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 How to Stretch Your Feet

If you have ever experienced a corn on the top of the toes, you most likely are aware of the pain that is associated with it. Corns are generally the result of increased pressure and rubbing, and typically originates from shoes that do not fit correctly. It appears to be a small area, and the skin will be hardened and thick. There are known to be two types of corns and are referred to as hard and soft corns. The latter generally develops in between the toes and are often soft, because of the excess moisture and sweat that is present. Hard corns come from wearing shoes that are too tight and may often cause the toes to endure unwanted pressure, resulting in pain and discomfort. There are different types of treatments that may be used to eliminate corns, and it’s advised to speak with a podiatrist for possible relief options that are correct for you.

If you have any concerns regarding your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames of Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Corns: What are they? And how do you get rid of them?
Corns can be described as areas of the skin that have thickened to the point of becoming painful or irritating. They are often layers and layers of the skin that have become dry and rough, and are normally smaller than calluses.

Ways to Prevent Corns
There are many ways to get rid of painful corns such as wearing:

  • Well-fitting socks
  • Comfortable shoes that are not tight around your foot
  • Shoes that offer support

Treating Corns
Treatment of corns involves removing the dead skin that has built up in the specific area of the foot. Consult with Our doctor to determine the best treatment option for your case of corns.

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 Understanding Corns and Calluses
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