The Importance of Warming Up and Cooling Down

Posted on October 21, 2019

The majority of people who enjoy the sport of running and jogging are aware of the importance of properly warming up before beginning their practice. It is important to keep the muscles limber and flexible, and this may be beneficial in preventing running injuries. It is equally as important to perform cool down stretches, and this may be helpful in preventing muscle soreness the following day. Research has indicated it is wise to follow a training plan. This can consist of gradually increasing the mileage and speed of your workout as to avoid strained muscles. Many runners incorporate strength training into their running routine, in addition to cross training activities. If you would like additional information about how running injuries can affect the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

All runners should take extra precaution when trying to avoid injury. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta of Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

There are a lot of mistakes a runner can make prior to a workout that can induce injury. A lot of athletes tend to overstretch before running, instead of saving those workouts for a post-run routine. Deep lunges and hand-to-toe hamstring pulls should be performed after a workout instead of during a warmup. Another common mistake is jumping into an intense routine before your body is physically prepared for it. You should try to ease your way into long-distance running instead of forcing yourself to rush into it.

More Tips for Preventing Injury

  • Incorporate Strength Training into Workouts – This will help improve the body’s overall athleticism
  • Improve and Maintain Your Flexibility – Stretching everyday will help improve overall performance
  • “Warm Up” Before Running and “Cool Down” Afterward – A warm up of 5-10 minutes helps get rid of lactic acid in the muscles and prevents delayed muscle soreness
  • Cross-Training is Crucial
  • Wear Proper Running Shoes
  • Have a Formal Gait Analysis – Poor biomechanics can easily cause injury

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

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Heel Pain Can Be Treated!

Posted on October 14, 2019

Do you suffer from heel pain when you get up in the morning? If so, you should seek the professional help of your podiatrist and have a proper diagnosis performed. Heel pain can be caused by several different foot-related conditions.

Types of Arthritis in the Feet

Posted on October 14, 2019

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 Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

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

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Proper Foot Care May Prevent Unwanted Foot Conditions

Posted on October 7, 2019

The feet are considered to be the foundation of the body. It is important to take care of them in the best way possible. There are daily routines that can be implemented which can help the feet, and positively affect the overall health of the body. These can include washing and drying the feet thoroughly, followed by using a moisturizer. This aids in keeping the skin soft, and may prevent unwanted foot conditions from developing. Additionally, it is beneficial to wear shoes that fit properly. These can consist of choosing shoes that have adequate room for the toes to move freely in, and ensuring the shoes are constructed with breathable materials. It may be helpful to avoid wearing high heels, or to wear them for limited periods of time, which may help to prevent hammertoe and bunions from developing. Research has indicated the importance of trimming the toenails correctly, as this is known to play a significant role in preventing ingrown toenails from developing. If you would like additional information about how to properly take care of your feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Everyday foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. 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 Bentonville, AR . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Where Do Plantar Warts Grow?

Posted on September 30, 2019

A plantar wart typically grows into the skin on the bottom of the foot. This is a result of pressure that is endured by standing and walking for majority of the day. They are caused by the HPV virus and can appear on the heel or on the sole of the foot under the toes. This type of virus is considered to be contagious, and it is beneficial to wear appropriate shoes while in specific environments. These can include public swimming pools, shower room floors, locker rooms, and surrounding areas. Plantar warts can cause severe pain and discomfort, and it is often difficult to walk. If you are afflicted with a plantar wart, it is advised that you speak with a podiatrist.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

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How Can Poor Circulation Be Improved?

Posted on September 23, 2019

The symptoms that often accompany poor circulation can include a tingling and numbing sensation in the hands and feet, swollen toes, and toenails may be brittle and discolored.  Some patients experience dry skin, dizzy spells and headaches, and these may be indicative of this condition. Raynaud’s disease is a type of poor circulation, and this may cause the fingers and toes to turn white, and may feel cold for the majority of the day. It is helpful to know that symptoms of circulation conditions may be diminished by performing a gentle exercise routine as frequently as possible. This may help to improve blood flow in the body. Additionally, it may be beneficial to limit or stop smoking, which may stop the arteries from becoming narrow. If you would like to learn more about how poor circulation can affect the feet, please schedule an appointment with a podiatrist.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta of Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

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

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What Are Orthotics?

Posted on September 16, 2019

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. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. 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 Bentonville, AR . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Orthotics

Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Posted on September 14, 2019

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Foot Symptoms Associated with Diabetes

Posted on September 9, 2019

Did you know that diabetes is responsible for over 50% of all foot amputations in the United States? That is why diabetes experts recommend that everyone, whether they have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, protect their feet with daily foot checks, wear supportive fitting socks and shoes, and complete a comprehensive foot exam by a podiatrist at least once a year. Two main foot problems that can occur with people who have diabetes are Peripheral Vascular Disease and Diabetic Neuropathy.  Other foot symptoms associated with people who have diabetes include loss of feeling, numbness or tingling sensations, blisters, skin discoloration, red streaks, and staining on their socks. If an infection develops the symptoms can worsen and include fever, chills, uncontrollable blood sugar, shock, and redness. With diabetes, since there can be numerous complications in the feet, it is strongly recommended that you consult with a podiatrist for the best prevention and treatment methods.

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 Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics. Our doctor 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 our office located in Bentonville, AR . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Possible Causes of Athlete’s Foot

Posted on September 2, 2019

The medical term for athlete’s foot is known as tinea pedis. It is a condition that affects the feet, and is caused by a fungus. Many patients notice symptoms of this condition between the toes and on the bottom of the feet, which often include severe itchiness and a burning sensation. The fungus of this contagious ailment lives and thrives in warm and moist environments. These can include public swimming pools, shower room floors, and surrounding areas. To avoid getting this uncomfortable condition, it is important to wear appropriate shoes while in these areas. Additionally, it is beneficial to wear clean shoes and socks, and it will also help to keep the toenails trimmed. Relief may be found while using an antifungal spray on the affected areas. For more severe cases, it is suggested that you speak to a podiatrist who can offer proper treatment options, which may include medication.

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Stephen S. Pirotta from Advanced Foot & Ankle Clinics.  Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

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

Read more about Athlete’s Foot