If you have pain or discomfort in your feet or ankle joints, you might have flat feet.

Do you have flat feet? Keep reading to find out!
Do you have flat feet? Keep reading to find out!

The arch, or instep, is the middle part of the foot that’s usually raised off the ground when you stand, while the rest of the foot remains flat on the ground. If you have flat feet, however, a fallen arch causes your foot to roll inwards and your entire sole comes close to touching the ground.

A flat foot, also known as pes planus, is normal in infants and toddlers, because the foot’s arch hasn’t yet developed. These arches typically develop throughout childhood, but some people never develop arches, which can lead to flat foot disorder.

Arches can also fall over time due to overall wear and tear that weakens the tendon that runs along the inside of your ankle and helps support your arch.

With a fallen arch, your tendons and ligaments weaken and cause intense pain throughout your feet, ankles, and lower leg muscles, especially in the region of your arch and heel.

“If you are suffering from flat feet, it means that you have a biomechanical fault in the mid-tarsal region,” said Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum of Delray Beach Podiatry. “When this happens, the arch is not actually present and, upon ambulation, the arch will flatten out. This creates a lot of soft tissue problems and joint problems later on in life.”

Flat feet can also contribute to problems in your ankles and knees because the condition can alter the alignment of your legs. If you aren’t having pain, no treatment is usually necessary for flatfeet. Additionally, if left untreated, the condition can also lead to weakened posture and discomfort through your hips and lower back.

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A foot bursitis is named after your bursa, which are fluid-filled cushions that protect your body’s joints. These cushions help you absorb shock, keep your joints moving smoothly, and prevent irritation from where your tendons and ligaments pass over your bones.

Although there is only a small number of bursae that occur naturally in the foot, the body creates more bursae in areas where pressure and friction of great. As we exercise, the ground surface and the shoes we wear play an important role in how much trauma our feet experience. In short, every step you take can cause a small amount of damage to a particular area in the foot which can increase the risk of bursitis.

Foot Bursitis Treatment at Delray Beach Podiatry [Image via MorgueFile.com]
Foot Bursitis Treatment at Delray Beach Podiatry [Image via MorgueFile.com]
Unfortunately, your bursa can become inflamed as your ability to absorb shock decreases, which causes the area around your joints to become irritated. In severe cases, the bursa will appear as a bump and is usually red, appearing extremely tender and painful. This swelling can hamper your ability to move your toes, foot, or ankle as the range of motion in the joints is affected.

Causes

Common causes of foot bursitis include:

  • Aging
  • A sudden injury
  • Too much repetitive motion of your joints, such as from over-exercising
  • A sudden twisting or rapid joint movement
  • Overuse and repeated movements

Symptoms

Common symptoms associated with foot bursitis include:

  • Pain or ache in the middle part of the underside of your heel
  • An increasing pain or discomfort while participating in weight-bearing activities
  • Pain and swelling under the heel
  • Redness under the heel

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Your feet and ankles are further from the heart than any other points on your body, so it’s important to know how to improve circulation in your legs.

(Jirka Lejska / Wikimedia Commons)
(Jirka Lejska / Wikimedia Commons)

For this reason, it is especially important that blood is able return from your lower extremities up to the heart without any difficulty. When you recognize that your circulatory system isn’t working properly, it’s likely time to make some changes to your lifestyle and contact your physician in order to work out a plan to get your blood properly flowing throughout your body again.

If you are diabetic, this issue becomes even more serious as poor circulation can often lead to a myriad of problems, including the formation of ulcers and potential amputation.

Luckily, there are several simple steps that can be taken to improve your circulation, such has:

How to Improve Circulation in Your Legs

1) Exercise Regularly

The transition from inactive to active can often be overwhelming for those looking to improve their health. The task doesn’t have to be daunting, however, if it is approached with the intent of gradually improving your levels of intensity and exercise duration rather than attempting to become a tri-athlete overnight. A good place to start is with some simple walking and then work your way up from there. If you begin to feel pain, take breaks as needed, but the goal should be to walk for 20-30 minutes a day, three to five days a week. From there, the sky’s the limit!

2) Maintain a Proper Diet

You are what you eat, and dietary choices often have a direct affect on your physical conditioning. Choosing to consume meals that are based on low-fat, minimally-processed foods are a great way to promote healthy blood flow and improve your overall physical health. Specific foods to include in your heart-healthy diet include oranges, sunflower seeds, salmon, avocados, watermelon, garlic and ginger.

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Is a foot or ankle injury keeping you off the tennis court?

Whether you’re are a professional or beginner, your lower extremities are always at an increased risk of injury while playing tennis. Although some of these injures can be minor and treated with simple at-home methods, more often than not a professional should be consulted in order to avoid further damage.

Tennis Injures (www.DelrayBeachPodiatry.com)
Tennis Injures (www.DelrayBeachPodiatry.com)

As for preventative treatment, a good pair of shoes — or even custom-made orthotics — will go a long walk in keeping you out of the doctor’s office, as the movement in tennis is often erratic and in all directions: forward, back, and side to side with sudden stops and starts.

Unfortunately, even if all the proper precautions are taken, injuries will always be a part of tennis. Not all injuries were created equal, however, and it’s important to know which of these setbacks can be aided by the help of a podiatrist. In many cases, a good podiatrist is not only your best ally in helping you get healthy return to the tennis, but also helps make sure that you can stay on it longer.

With that in mind, here are several common tennis injuries that a podiatrist can help you with:

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Whether you are suffering varicose veins or edema, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum of Delray Beach & Boynton Beach Podiatry has all of the right tools and treatments to improve both the cosmetic and internal health of your legs.

Varicose veins are the visible surface manifestations of an underlying problem with reverse venous flow, which is also termed venous insufficiency syndrome. Edema, meanwhile, is categorized as any sort of swelling of the lower extremities caused by injury or inflammation.

Varicose Veins & Spider Veins
Varicose Veins & Spider Veins

Varicose veins can be caused by weak or damaged valves in the veins. These veins have valves that act as one-way flaps to prevent blood from flowing backwards as it moves up your legs and back towards the heart. If theses valves become weak, blood can leak back into the veins and collect there. When backed-up blood makes the veins bigger, they can become varicose.

When identifying this condition, your veins can appear to be blue, red, or flesh-colored. They can also become raised above the surface of the skin and often resemble twisted, bulging cords.

Varicose veins are a very common condition in the United States and affect approximately 30-50 percent of adults. Women are four times more likely than men have varicose veins, and they become more prevalent with age.

If left untreated, varicose veins may lead to serious problems such as Thrombosis or venous stasis ulcers. Additionally, varicose veins may also indicate that you are at higher risk of other disorders of the circulatory system.

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