Thursday, August 20, 2009

Do your feet need relief?

Perhaps you would like to apply heat to your feet, or something cool to your feet? Well, a podiatrist that I know and has treated me for years, has developed a new product called Cool Soles. Actually, these soles can be cool or heated. You put them in the freezer or in your microwave, and then using straps that come with the soles, you apply them to your feet. They cost about $25 and can be ordered directly from the Dr. Rosenberg Cool Soles website at and each package includes a sole for the right foot and the left foot and the straps for application.\alanbestbuys

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

"OMG"...My heels hurt and I have ugly toenails!

Summer feet..., Cracked heels, Nail fungus or plain old dirt!
It is summer time and flip – flops, sandals or open toed shoes are the footwear of choice. That means our feet are vulnerable to toe nail fungus or is it dirt disease and cracked calloused heels.... Let’s see.Nail fungus known as Onychomycosis can turn your toenails into a thick, yellow, flaky and painful mess. Fungus nails sometimes start out with just the corner of your toenail involved. The nail plate usually appears yellow or discolored in the tip of one your toenails first and then can later spread to other toenails. Fungus nails can detach from the nail plate making it possible for the nail to rip off if it gets caught in a sock or jammed into the leg of a table or bedpost. Once the nail plate is slightly detached from the nail bed dirt can get underneath the nail and cause the nail to have a dark appearance and turn black.

The question is, what is this mysterious material underneath the toenail, a fungus or dirt. Dirt can get underneath the clear nail plate and cause a dark spot to appear, confusing you to think “OMG” I have fungus! So check out your nails carefully and you can decide for yourself what those dreaded dark spots are underneath your toenails. If the nail doses not appear either yellow, thick (having a dry chalky flaky substance present underneath the nail plate) or disfigured it probably is not a fungal nail. Visiting your podiatrist or Dermatologist is the first step in identifying and getting rid of your problem. There are over the counter topical solutions available as well as prescription oral medications that can be helpful in treating the nail fungus problem.Another problem that can occur during the summer months are cracked thick painful callous around the heels of your feet. This can also be a problem that will drive you too a podiatrist or dermatologist. They can fissure and open up making walking difficult. Walking barefoot or wearing flip- flops and backless sandals causes them because of friction (continual rubbing of the skin on a hard surface) around the rim of the heel. Another reason for having fissured or cracked heels is dry skin. If this skin problem is not treated properly the skin could get infected. A few easy ways to treat this problem is by purchasing a foot cream with 40 % Urea. Urea will soften and moisturize the skin breaking down the thick callous formation. Another way to treat the problem is to use an abrasive file to smooth the tissue. Using abrasive files such as diamond files or even nail files are easy ways to smooth that thick tuff callous on your feet.So, take care of your feet during these hot summer days and your feet will take care of you!

Monday, August 3, 2009

SHOES..."How to choose what to use"

“If the shoe fits wear it and when the foot hits the ground, everything changes”! These are two important facts you need to know when you are buying athletic shoes to stay fit. There are many types of athletic surfaces available to workout on, depending on your activity. Tennis players play on hard, clay and grass courts. Runners run on asphalt streets, concrete sidewalks, dirt, grass, on a track and hard or soft sand at the beach. Basketball player’s play on hardwood and concrete courts. However, whatever sports activity you participate in, if your foot is not properly supported on these different types of surfaces and in the right type of shoe, your foot biomechanics will be thrown off. Ouch! Our feet begin to compensate during a run, a game of tennis or up and down the basketball court. This could cause poor foot placement during your stride. A shoe that provides stability and proper foot support, when running, will help eliminate potential lower leg and foot injuries. Remember some feet are very unstable and no matter what shoe you are wearing your feet will need additional support to control that problem. Running in the right athletic shoes will make exercising easier. The shoe should have enough room in the toe box so your toes will not get crowded when running which could lead to blisters and other foot irritations. There should be at least a thumbs width between the longest toe on your foot and the end of the toe box. Again if the shoe is comfortable, cushioned and feels supportive it should help avoid any type of potential foot injury. The right shoe will be more comfortable and more stable for your foot. It will allow your foot to function better because your foot is stable. Stable feet in stable shoes do not brake down as fast as unstable feet in any shoe.

Overuse injuries are the most common type of foot injuries that walk into a doctor’s office. They occur more often in people who have unstable feet because the arch collapses during their activities. This will result in foot fatigue, cramping arches, plantar fasciitis and tendonitis. They are less likely to happen with people who have stable feet and a better foot structure. Wearing the right shoe reduces the susceptibility of foot injuries. The shoe should have a ridged heel counter to prevent the heel from sliding, a solid midsole and outersole to reduce the impact load on the feet and shock to the body. Initially, stable, supportive and durable shoes will most likely keep a person who has foot problems or unstable feet injury free until the shoes begins to brake down. Professionally made orthotics, as well as over the counter prefabricated orthotics, or instant arches are other options available to help keep your feet supported in your athletic shoes.

Doing the research and finding the best shoe for your foot will prevent potential foot injuries from occurring during exercise and keep your feet happy and out of the doctors offices!