Risk Factors That Can Contribute to Falls

There are a number of risk factors that can contribute to falling. Among the most common are foot problems – such as bunions, corns or ingrown toenails – which can change the way you walk and affect your balance. Footwear that is inappropriate for certain activities, and weak muscles caused by inactivity, arthritis, or lack of exercise, can also put you at risk. Numbness in the feet, which may be a result of diabetes, can be a further risk for falling. Other factors include drinking too much alcohol, medication that may cause dizziness, poor balance, and even vision problems. Many of these risk factors can be common among older adults, but may be apparent in people of all ages. If your foot problems are causing you to lose your balance frequently, it may be time to see a podiatrist for treatment options that can help you live a safer life.  

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 Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor 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 our office located in Bronx, NY . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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How to Deal With a Dancer’s Fracture

When you experience a twisted foot or ankle, it can cause another injury sometimes called a dancer’s fracture. If the toe is pointed downward as the ankle twists outward, a spiral fracture to the 5th metatarsal may result. This injury, which curves lengthwise down the foot bone, causes immediate pain, swelling and difficulty walking. The outside of the foot may turn black-and-blue and be tender to the touch. This condition frequently takes at least six weeks to heal, and even then can be problematic, especially if ligaments are also affected. It is suggested that anyone receiving this type of injury make an appointment to see a podiatrist immediately to get an X-ray and complete examination. The foot will likely be placed in a boot for a number of weeks and bearing weight will be limited. Other treatment options may be recommended.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Causes

Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Bunions
  • Hammertoes
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Bone Spurs
  • Corns
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ingrown Toenails
  • Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
  • Flat Feet
  • Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
  • And more

Diagnosis

To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.

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

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Treating Foot Problems as You Age

Adults often experience the onset of foot conditions more and more as they age. Just like the tires on a car, the feet simply begin to wear down. It is thought that the average senior puts about 115,000 miles on their feet over a lifetime. If foot problems are taking a more prominent role in your life, there are some ways to help prevent them from getting worse. Check to see if you need different shoes, because feet tend to widen as you age. Shoes with good support can also help prevent falls. It may also be time to give up high heels and pointy-toed shoes which often cause bunions, hammertoes, corns, and other foot ailments over time. The wearing away of the natural fat pads on the heel and ball of the foot may indicate a need for shoe inserts or orthotics to help cushion your feet. If standing or walking is becoming difficult, implementing the use of a walker, walking stick, or cane may help to prevent loss of balance and falls. Finally, it is a good idea to make regular appointments with a podiatrist to make sure your feet are receiving the proper care they need.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. 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-threatening 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 Bronx, NY . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Various Causes of Heel Pain

Podiatrists treat many types of disorders that cause pain in various parts of the heel. The most common heel pain is caused by plantar fasciitis (inflammation of the plantar fascia tissue), which causes pain on the bottom of the foot. Other common sources of heel pain include a calcaneal (heel bone) fracture, heel pad syndrome (a wearing down of the cushion on the bottom of the heel), nerve entrapment, including tarsal tunnel syndrome (which can also cause tingling, numbness or burning), neuromas (nerve swelling), and Achilles tendinopathy (damage to the tendon that attaches to the heel bone). Growing children may also be prone to Sever’s disease, which is irritation in the growth plate of the heel. If you have heel pain, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist. They will typically begin their evaluation by asking where the pain is located in the heel, along with medical history questions, followed by a physical examination. They may also use various diagnostic tools to determine the underlying cause of your heel pain and how best to treat it.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Dr. Castillo of Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Bronx, NY . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Do You Suffer From Painful Feet?

Painful deformities, such as hammertoes, can be treated. Stop living with foot pain, and have beautiful feet again!

Signs of Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection on the feet that causes a red, scaly and itchy rash between the toes. The skin may form blisters, as well as crack and peel. The fungus that causes Athlete’s foot is very contagious and thrives in warm and moist environments like showers, locker rooms and pools. It often spreads from the floors, towels, or clothing. Athlete’s foot can spread around the feet as well. If it isn’t treated properly, Athlete’s foot can spread to the toenails, causing them to be thick and discolored, and it can spread to the hands if touched. Patients who believe that they have Athlete’s foot should make sure to keep their feet dry and not share any common items like shoes, socks and towels because of how contagious it is. Patients who believe that they have Athlete’s foot should consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment path.

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.

What Is Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.

Prevention

The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:

  • Thoroughly washing and drying feet
  • Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
  • Using shower shoes in public showers
  • Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
  • Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot

Symptoms

Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Scaly and peeling skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.

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

 

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What Are the Symptoms of Foot Drop?

Foot drop is a neuromuscular disorder in which a person has difficulty raising the front of their foot up while walking, an ability known as dorsiflexion. This causes the toes to drag on the ground while walking. To compensate for a loss of dorsiflexion, some people develop an unusual pattern of walking in which they lift their knees higher to raise the foot, sometimes slapping their foot back down on the ground with each step. This is known as a steppage gait. In addition to these symptoms, people with foot drop may also have tingling, numbness, or muscle weakness in the foot. If you are experiencing symptoms of foot drop, it is strongly suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist.

Neuropathy

Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What Is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

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

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Differences between Hammer Toes, Claw Toes, and Mallet Toes

Hammertoes, claw toes, and mallet toes all result from the toes getting bent into odd positions. They usually look odd or unsightly, and they typically affect the smaller toes. When the toe is bent downward and the middle joint raises up, this is known as a hammertoe. This condition frequently affects the second toe and sometimes coincides with a bunion. Claw toes occur when the toes curl up due to the middle joints being bent down, and they often affect all four smaller toes at the same time. When the joint closest to the tip of the toe bends downward, it forms what is known as a mallet toe. Wearing shoes that are too tight is most commonly blamed for these conditions arising, but they can also be linked to diabetes or arthritis. These toe ailments can be quite painful, so patients who are struggling with one would be wise to consult with a podiatrist who can help find a treatment option and determine if surgery is necessary. 

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Bronx, NY . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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What Do Podiatrists Do?

Podiatrists are medical professionals who diagnose, treat, and offer preventative care for problems that affect the feet, ankles, and lower legs. Podiatrists may treat various foot and ankle injuries, such as plantar fasciitis, ankle sprains, and stress fractures. They can also address foot deformities, such as bunions, and skin or nail conditions like athlete’s foot or fungal toenails. A podiatrist might play a major role in a patient’s care if they have diabetes, poor circulation, or neuropathy, as these conditions frequently affect the feet. Some podiatrists are also trained in surgery. If you have developed a foot or ankle problem, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist. 

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact Dr. Castillo from Bronx Foot Care. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek the care of a podiatrist if they have suffered a foot injury or have common foot ailments such as heal spurs, bunions, arch problems, deformities, ingrown toenails, corns, foot and ankle problems, etc.

Podiatric Treatment

A podiatrist will treat the problematic areas of the feet, ankle or lower leg by prescribing the following:

  • Physical therapy
  • Drugs
  • Orthotic inserts or soles
  • Surgery on lower extremity fractures

A common podiatric procedure a podiatrist will use is a scanner or force plate which will allow the podiatrist to know the designs of orthotics. Patients are then told to follow a series of tasks to complete the treatment. The computer will scan the foot a see which areas show weight distribution and pressure points. The podiatrist will read the analysis and then determine which treatment plans are available.

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

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Reminder: When Was the Last Time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

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