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June 2021

Orthotics are devices used on the outside of your body to correct biomechanical problems. Most people are familiar with orthotic insoles, which are over-the-counter or custom-made devices that are placed directly into your shoes. These are often used to treat foot problems such as flat feet and plantar fasciitis. Other types of orthotics include ankle-foot orthoses (AFOs), which are used to hold the foot and ankle in the correct positions and support the ankle, and prescription footwear, which are specially designed shoes used to correct various foot problems. To learn more about orthotics, and to see if they may be right for you, please consult with a podiatrist.

If you are having discomfort in your feet and would like to try orthotics, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. 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 one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Orthotics

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is the band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot from the heel to the toes. A common sign of plantar fasciitis is pain in the heel as well as the arch of the foot. The pain is usually worse when taking your first few steps right after sleeping or resting, and it may ease during exercise and worsen afterwards. Common risk factors for plantar fasciitis include exercising with a tight calf, recently starting to exercise on hard surfaces, wearing shoes with poor support, and being overweight. Patients who have heel pain that is stopping them from doing daily activities, that keeps getting worse, has not improved, or who also have diabetes should consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment for the pain.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

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

 

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At the lower end of the calf, the two calf muscles (gastrocnemius and soleus) join and become one long band of fibrous tissue known as the Achilles tendon. The Achilles tendon connects the calf with the heel and helps the foot bend. The Achilles tendon may become injured, torn, or ruptured during physical activities that involve sudden starts and stops, jumping or running. It can also occur during regular activities in people aged 40-64 who have diabetes, high cholesterol, or a problem with weight. A snapping, cracking, or popping sound may occur at the moment of injury or when pressure is applied to the damaged tendon. Other symptoms may include: pain, swelling, bruising, or stiffness in the back of the foot and tendon area—which can be worse upon waking or after exercise—a weakened leg, reduced mobility, or sensitivity to touch. If you suspect you may have injured your Achilles tendon, seek the care of a podiatrist to receive an accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein of Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. 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 one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What are Achilles Tendon Injuries

If you are suffering from tenderness, pain, or stiffness in the joints of your feet or ankles, call us to schedule an appointment.

Tuesday, 08 June 2021 00:00

Tips to Prevent Running Injuries

If you are a runner, then you are likely no stranger to foot and ankle injuries. Running can put immense strain on the lower limbs, leading to conditions such as plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis, ankle strains and sprains, and stress fractures. Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to avoid foot and ankle injuries while running. The most important thing you can do to prevent injuries is train slowly. Increase the mileage, duration, or intensity of your runs separately and gradually over time, and give yourself plenty of time to rest following a run. It is also important that you wear properly fitted shoes that support and protect your feet. For more information about preventing running injuries, please speak with a podiatrist. 

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein of Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

Many common running injuries are caused by overuse and overtraining. When the back of the kneecap starts wearing out and starts causing pain in your knee, this is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Runner’s knee is a decrease in strength in your quadriceps and can occur if you’re not wearing properly fitted or supporting shoes. To prevent runner’s knee, focusing on hip strengthening is a good idea, as well as strengthening your quads to keep the kneecaps aligned.

What Are Some Causes of Running Injuries?
- One cause of a common running injury is called iliotibial band syndrome.
- Plantar fasciitis is also another common injury.
- Stress fractures can occur from overtraining, lack of calcium, or even your running style.

Best Ways to Prevent Running Injuries
- Wear footwear that fits properly and suits your running needs.
- Running shoes are the only protective gear that runners have to safeguard them from injury.
- Make a training schedule. Adding strengthening exercises as well as regular stretching can help keep you strong and limber and can lessen the possibility of injuries.
- Stretching keeps muscles limber; this will help you gain better flexibility.

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

Read more about How to Prevent Running Injuries

When the common human papillomavirus (HPV) enters the skin of the foot through a small cut or compromised area and causes keratin to develop, plantar warts occur. These are rough, white, or skin-colored warts that present on the heel, toes, or other weight-bearing points on the sole of the foot. Plantar warts, also known as verrucas, will sometimes have black dots at their core, which are actually clotted blood vessels. Because HPV is contagious, plantar warts can be passed from the skin of one person to another through direct contact, or by indirect exposure to an infected person’s socks, shoes, towels, or surfaces such as public swimming pools or communal changing rooms where the virus may be living. The virus can spread to hands and fingers, but the warts that develop on these parts of the body are known as palmar warts. People with a weakened immune system, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, or those who have warts that bleed, change color, cause a loss of sensation in the foot, or are very painful, should seek professional help. A podiatrist has a variety of remedies and procedures that can treat or even remove plantar warts.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. 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 one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Plantar Warts?
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