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Monday, 12 October 2020 00:00

What Exercises Can Help Flexible Flat Feet?

Flexible flat feet refers to a condition where the arch of the foot lies flat on the floor while standing, but reappears when the foot does not bear any weight. For some people, this condition can cause discomfort. Stretching and exercising the feet may help strengthen the arch and reduce pain. One of the exercises you can try is a heel raise. To do this stretch, stand in front of a wall with your feet shoulder-width apart and flat on the floor. You may put your hands on the wall for balance. Raise your heels as high as you can off the floor. Hold for 1-2 seconds and then slowly return to the starting position. Do two sets of 10-20 repetitions. For more information about exercises for flat feet, as well as other treatment options that may work for you, consult with a podiatrist.

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Being the backbone of the body, the feet carry your entire weight and can easily become overexerted, causing cramps and pain. As with any body part, stretching your feet can serve many benefits. From increasing flexibility to even providing some pain relief, be sure to give your feet a stretch from time to time. This is especially important for athletes or anyone performing aerobic exercises, but anyone experiencing foot pain or is on their feet constantly should also engage in this practice.

Great ways to stretch your feet:

  • Crossing one leg over the others and carefully pull your toes back. Do 10-20 repetitions and repeat the process for each foot
  • Face a wall with your arms out and hands flat against the wall. Step back with one foot and keep it flat on the floor while moving the other leg forward. Lean towards the wall until you feel a stretch. Hold for 30 seconds and perform 10 repetitions for each foot
  • Be sure not to overextend or push your limbs too hard or you could risk pulling or straining your muscle

Individuals who tend to their feet by regular stretching every day should be able to minimize foot pain and prevent new problems from arising.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 05 October 2020 00:00

Common Symptoms of Stress Fractures

Stress fractures generally occur as a result of an injury that is caused by overusing the foot. A stress fracture is defined as a hairline crack in one of the metatarsal bones in the foot, and can be common among people who participate in running and jumping activities. Pain and discomfort may be felt in the center of the foot, which may also appear swollen. Mild relief may be found when the activity that caused the fracture is stopped, and the affected foot is frequently elevated. A proper diagnosis generally consists of having an X-ray, MRI, or CT scan performed, and is followed by implementing an effective treatment plan. This can consist of resting the foot for several weeks, walking with crutches, or wearing a cast. If you have endured a stress fracture, please consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward treatment methods that will work for you.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

The type of shoes that are worn is important to consider while working out. An exercise routine may be hindered if shoes do not fit correctly, and potential foot problems may develop. There are different types of shoes that can be purchased for various sporting activities. Runners will benefit by knowing the amount of shock absorption that is needed, in addition to observing how the feet make contact with the ground. This can be identified by looking at old shoes, and noticing wear and tear patterns. For people that enjoy hiking, boots may be a better option than running shoes. It is beneficial if they are made of waterproof materials, and have adequate cushioning. If you have any questions about what type of shoes to purchase for preferred sporting activities, please consult with a podiatrist who can help you to make the right choices. 

Finding a properly-fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in proper fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improper fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, properly-fitting shoes are vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 21 September 2020 00:00

Possible Symptoms of Neuropathy

The peripheral nerves control several responses in the body, including the sense of touch, muscle strength, and the ability to feel pain. Neuropathy indicates a loss of sensation in the feet and fingers, and can cause severe pain and discomfort. It can occur as a result of existing medical conditions such as diabetes and kidney disease. Additionally, excessive alcohol use and vitamin deficiency may lead to developing neuropathy. Some of the symptoms that are associated with this condition can be a loss of balance, and many patients can experience shooting pain in the limbs. Research has indicated that it may be beneficial to incorporate healthy eating habits into your daily regimen, and it may help to perform simple exercises that can increase muscle strength. If your feet are numb, it is strongly recommended that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can properly diagnose and treat neuropathy.

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. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. 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 offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 21 September 2020 00:00

Are Bunions Affecting Your Everyday Life?

Have you noticed a bony protrusion on the side of your big toe? If so, you may have developed the foot condition known as a bunion. Don't let bunions interfere with your daily activities.

Monday, 14 September 2020 00:00

What Is Wrong With My Toe?

If you have noticed your second, third, or fourth toe has begun to bend in a downward shape, you may have a hammertoe. A hammertoe typically starts out as a mild deformity, however if left untreated, it can worsen over time and become more rigid. When a hammertoe is too rigid, non-surgical treatments such as a custom orthotic, may no longer be a viable option. Hammertoes can develop due to a muscle or tendon imbalance, as well as a previous trauma to the affected toe. For a proper diagnosis, please consult with a podiatrist.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. 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 offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Hammertoe
Tuesday, 08 September 2020 00:00

Preventing Foot Blisters

Blisters are small pockets of raised skin filled with fluid. A blister on the foot can develop for a variety of reasons, however, the main culprit is friction. To prevent the development of blisters from friction, it is important to wear the proper shoes. Your footwear should be properly-fitted and supportive, providing your toes with enough room to move in and adequate cushioning while you walk or stand. Other causes of blisters can be excessive moisture, an allergic reaction to a substance, or an underlying medical condition. Prevent blisters caused by moisture by using a foot powder, antiperspirant, or moisture-wicking socks, especially if you are an athlete or prone to excessive sweating. If you have gotten a blister in the past due to an allergic reaction to specific powders, lotions, or soaps, avoid using these products. Seek prompt treatment for medical conditions that may cause blistering, such as viral infections or eczema. For more information on what you can do to prevent foot blisters, consult with a podiatrist today.

Blisters are prone to making everyday activities extremely uncomfortable. If your feet are hurting, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Foot Blisters

Foot blisters develop as a result of constantly wearing tight or ill-fitting footwear. This happens due to the constant rubbing from the shoe, which can often lead to pain.

What Are Foot Blisters?

A foot blister is a small fluid-filled pocket that forms on the upper-most layer of the skin. Blisters are filled with clear fluid and can lead to blood drainage or pus if the area becomes infected.

How Do Blisters Form?

Blisters on the feet are often the result of constant friction of skin and material, usually by shoe rubbing. Walking in sandals, boots, or shoes that don’t fit properly for long periods of time can result in a blister. Having consistent foot moisture and humidity can easily lead to blister formation.

Prevention & Treatment

It is important to properly care for the affected area in order to prevent infection and ease the pain. Do not lance the blister and use a Band-Aid to provide pain relief. Also, be sure to keep your feet dry and wear proper fitting shoes. If you see blood or pus in a blister, seek assistance from a podiatrist.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 31 August 2020 00:00

Caring for Diabetic Foot Ulcers

We should all be wary of cuts, scrapes, and wounds on our feet, but diabetics need to be especially careful. Diabetic foot ulcers are open sores or wounds that form mainly on the bottoms of the feet of people with diabetes. These wounds are slow to heal and may become infected. Therefore, it is important for diabetics to take special care of their feet. Daily inspections of the feet to check for scrapes, sores, and blisters, can help detect any problems early on. If you find an open wound, wash it well with saline or clean tap water, then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound. Cover the wound with a bandage to protect it, and change the bandage every one to two days, making sure to clean and disinfect the wound again. Keep pressure off the wound as much as you can to aid in healing. If you have diabetes and struggle with diabetic foot ulcers, see a podiatrist who can help you take care of your feet.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care
Monday, 31 August 2020 00:00

Are You Suffering From Ingrown Toenails?

If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can lead to more serious concerns, such as an infection. Knowing proper nail care can help in the prevention of an ingrown toenail. Give us a call, and get treated!

Monday, 24 August 2020 00:00

Possible Causes of Ingrown Toenails

The big toe is often affected if an ingrown toenail occurs. It can happen as a result of wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in, or if the toenails are not trimmed properly. Common symptoms that many patients experience can include redness, swelling, and pain when the toe is touched. Additionally, in severe cases, pus may ooze from the affected area. The toe may feel better when shoes that fit properly are worn, and it may help to soak the toe in warm water. This can be beneficial in pushing the skin away from the ingrown toenail, which may provide temporary relief. If you are afflicted with this type of foot condition, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Ingrown Toenail Care
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