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December 2019

Monday, 30 December 2019 00:00

What Is Gout?

The arthritic condition that is referred to as gout has been known and treated for more than two thousand years. It mostly affects men and can cause sudden pain in the joints of the big toe. The symptoms many patients experience can include severe pain and discomfort, swelling, and extreme tenderness. It may be difficult to walk, and anything that touches the affected area may cause significant pain. It is caused by excess levels of uric acid in the bloodstream. Crystals can form as a result of this, and lodge to the joints of the body. It can be described as if pins were in between the joints of the big toe, which can cause severe inflammation. The level of uric acid may increase if certain foods are eaten. These can consist of red meat, shellfish, and sugary drinks. If you are prone to having gout attacks, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can help you to manage this condition.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout
Saturday, 28 December 2019 00:00

Are Bunions Affecting Your Everyday Life?

Don't let bunions interfere with your daily activities.

There are many ways to prevent falling in the home. Research has indicated that falling can be a common occurrence among elderly people, which is why it is important for them to implement steps to better prevent this from occurring. It is beneficial to walk at a slower pace, in addition to wearing shoes that fit properly. These types of shoes can include footwear that has a non-slip sole, closed toes, and a cushioned heel area. It may also be helpful to discard older rugs that may have become worn, and to secure any existing rugs to the floor. Many patients also find it useful to install grab bars in the shower and toilet area, which may help in maintaining balance. Additionally, it is wise to have regular eye exams and to improve the lighting in the house in order to help prevent tripping over any potential falling hazards. If you would like general knowledge on the dangers of falling, please consult with a podiatrist who can provide information about how falling can affect the feet.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 16 December 2019 00:00

What Causes Cracked Heels?

The uncomfortable condition that is known as cracked heels comes from excessively dry skin. It typically affects the outer edges of the heel, and can cause deep cracks to form. These cracks in the skin are known as fissures, and may cause severe pain and discomfort. There are common reasons why this condition may occur. These can include standing for an extended period of time throughout the day, as well as wearing shoes that have an open back. Additionally, existing medical conditions such as eczema or psoriasis may lead to the development of cracked heels. Treatment can begin with washing and drying the feet thoroughly, followed by using a good moisturizer several times per day. It may help to wear shoes that have significant cushioning in the heel area. If you are afflicted with cracked heels, it is suggested that you speak with a podiatrist who can help you to find relief.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Many diabetic patients are aware of the necessity of checking their feet on a daily basis. This is helpful in noticing if there are any cuts or scrapes so treatment can begin as quickly as possible. Research has indicated that a large percentage of diabetic patients suffer from neuropathy, which is also known as nerve damage. This is a result of elevated glucose levels in the bloodstream, which can cause a loss of feeling in the feet. To keep your feet as healthy as possible, it is important to maintain normal glucose levels, wear shoes that fit correctly, and trim your toenails properly. If you have diabetes, it is strongly encouraged that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can remove existing corns and calluses in addition to guiding you toward managing your diabetes.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about How to Care for Diabetic Foot
Monday, 02 December 2019 00:00

Types of Arthritis in the Feet

Arthritis is a condition that affects the joints in the body. There are more than thirty joints in each foot, and this ailment is often first noticed in the ankles and feet. There are several types of arthritis that affect various parts of the foot. If you have pain in your big toe, ankle, or in the middle of the foot, you may have what is known as osteoarthritis. A type of arthritis that is referred to as rheumatoid arthritis will generally affect both feet, targeting the same joints in each foot. Many patients experience gout attacks, which can be caused by foods that are eaten which have elevated purine levels. This may cause crystals to form in the joints of the big toe, and typically causes severe pain and discomfort. Additionally, the toes can become affected if psoriatic arthritis exists, and may affect the plantar fascia. Moderate relief may be found when shoes are worn that fit properly. In severe cases, it is strongly advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can recommend methods that can be helpful in reducing inflammation, or possibly perform surgery on the affected joints.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a joint disorder that involves the inflammation of different joints in your body, such as those in your feet. Arthritis is often caused by a degenerative joint disease and causes mild to severe pain in all affected areas. In addition to this, swelling and stiffness in the affected joints can also be a common symptom of arthritis.

In many cases, wearing ill-fitting shoes can worsen the effects and pain of arthritis. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room can help your feet feel more comfortable. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with proper arch support that contour to your feet can help immensely.

Alleviating Arthritic Pain

  • Exercises that stretch the foot can prevent further pain and injury and increase mobility
  • Most of the pain can be alleviated with anti-inflammatory drugs, heat, and topical medications
  • Massages can help temporarily alleviate pain.

It is best to see your doctor for the treatment that is right for your needs and symptoms. Conditions vary, and a podiatrist can help you determine the right method of care for your feet.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about How to Care for Your Arthritic Foot
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