Our feet are one of the most active parts of our bodies, carrying all our weight from one place to another. Unfortunately, they’re also often one of the most overlooked. Problems with your toes, feet, and ankles can make moving around difficult, even impossible. Podiatrists like Dr. Mark Haas, Dr. Zachery Haas, and Dr. Matthew Cobb in Albuquerque, NM often recommend orthotics as a way to enhance your ability to walk comfortably. We've outlined the two basic types of orthotics - over-the-counter and prescriptive - in this article.
The branch of orthotics, when it comes to podiatry, is very broad. The main goal of any orthotic is to optimize your comfort and stability to make movement easier. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of needing extra cushioning inside a pair of shoes. In many cases, this can be accomplished by visiting your local pharmacy and checking out their over the counter selection of shoe inserts. There are pads for bunions and calluses on the toes, arch supports for plantar fasciitis, and many others. Your Albuquerque podiatrist will give you recommendations so you don’t feel overwhelmed by the choices.
In some cases, a one-size-fits-all solution isn’t very effective. People who have physical abnormalities with their gait, such as overpronation (feet rolling inward), or underlying medical conditions such as cerebral palsy or rheumatoid arthritis, may need a more personalized approach to orthotics. Your Albuquerque podiatrist is trained and experienced in prescribing custom orthotics, which will correct and cushion targeted areas of your foot and ankle. They are made in a medical laboratory from specific measurements taken during your appointment at Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists.
When walking is more comfortable, you'll find that your whole life is easier. Contacting Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists in Albuquerque, NM is the best way to get started. Call our office for an appointment today!
Staying active is the key to maintaining good health as you age. However, if walking is difficult due to problems with your feet, you may notice the rest of your health start to decline as well. At Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists in Albuquerque, New Mexico, podiatrists Dr. Mark Haas, Dr. Zachary Haas, and Dr. Matthew Cobb wants their senior patients to know about the best ways they and their caregivers can maintain the health of their feet in order to ensure a better lifestyle. Some of their tips are listed below.
Health conditions that affect the foot
Due to the changes the body undergoes as we age, older people are commonly affected by reduced circulation, arthritis, or diabetes - or a combination of the three. These conditions are particularly hard on the feet. Diabetes and circulatory issues can cause a reduced sense of feeling, while arthritis can be extremely painful. All of these can severely limit activity. Foot injuries can also cause problems that are especially concerning to your Albuquerque podiatrist, as they are often slow to heal due to the lack of circulation to the lower extremities. This puts foot wounds at risk for serious infections. Even without systemic diseases, using the feet over many decades can leave them deformed and painful.
Geriatric foot care tips
As with many other health conditions, prevention is essential to foot health, especially for the elderly population. Your Albuquerque podiatrist can teach his patients the best ways to clean and inspect the feet daily for any signs of injury, no matter how minor, as well as proper techniques for trimming the toenails to prevent problems like ingrown toenails. Wearing good quality socks and shoes at all times can keep injuries at bay, and staying active can help increase blood flow and keep the muscles in working order.
It's important to understand that geriatric foot problems can be treated effectively, but working with your podiatrists in Albuquerque, Dr. Mark Haas, Dr. Zachary Haas, and Dr. Matthew Cobb, is the first step to relieving your discomfort. Contact Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists to schedule an appointment for yourself or a loved one today!
Do you know what a bunion is? Most people know they're located on the feet, but not everyone knows how they're formed or treated. You might not even realize you currently have a bunion! At Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists, Dr. Mark Haas, Dr. Zachary Haas, and Dr. Matthew Cobb want their patients in Albuquerque, New Mexico to be informed of the different ways we can help them, and understand the reasons why bunions happen and what can be done to manage them.
What is a bunion?
A bunion may look like an extra growth on the inside of your foot near the base of the big toe, but they're actually a misshapen toe joint. When the big toe has constant pressure on it that pushes inward it toward the other toes, its bottom joint may begin to jut outwards. Bunions are largely a problem for women because of the way their footwear crowds the toes. The likelihood of developing on a bunion on one or both of your feet can also be due to genetic predisposition.
How are bunions treated?
Many people with bunions aren't bothered by them. However, some people visit their Albuquerque podiatrist with complaints of pain from the joint or from blisters and other lesions that have developed due to friction. There are several ways that our doctors at Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists can treat bothersome bunions. Cushioned pads and shoe inserts can help protect the bunion from pressure and rubbing. Switching out narrow shoes for roomier options may also help relieve pain. Surgery may be an option for those who with severe joint deformities, especially if they do not find relief from conservative methods.
If you have a bunion that's been bothering you, it's time to contact your New Mexico foot doctors at Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists for an appointment. Dr. Mark Haas, Dr. Zachary Haas, and Dr. Matthew Cobb look forward to meeting with you!
You may not pay much attention to your feet until you're in pain. Then, every step you take hurts, and you just want the pain to stop. Heel pain is one of the most difficult kind of podiatric discomforts, but the expert staff at Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists in Albuquerque, NM, can help. Whether a patient suffers from heel spurs, heel fissures or Haglund's Deformity, Dr. Zachary Haas, Dr. Mark Haas and Dr. Matthew Cobb can pinpoint the cause and offer precise and compassionate care to help every step you take be pain-free.
Kinds of heel pain in Albuquerque
Have you ever heard of plantar fasciitis and heel spurs? If you're middle-aged or older, you may have personally experienced these painful and worrisome conditions. Both cause pain that begins at the heel and moves across the plantar fascia, the band of connective tissue that stretches from the heel to the base of the toes.
Plantar fasciitis is inflammatory, causing redness, swelling and constant aching pain. It's worse when rising in the morning but continues with stiffness throughout the day. Often, small spurs, or bony projections off the front of the heel bone, accompany plantar fasciitis and add to its immobility and discomfort.
Our podiatrists notice that people with high arches, flat feet, poorly supporting footwear and weight issues suffer from plantar fasciitis and heel spurs. Thankfully, they have many ways to treat this foot problem that affects nearly 2 million Americans (according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons).
- NSAIDS, such as ibuprofen
- Custom-made shoe inserts (orthotics) or night splints
- Cortisone shots
- Physical therapy
- Stretching exercises
- ESWT, or extracorporeal shock wave therapy when less conservative measures are ineffective
- Plantar fascia release surgery
- Bone spur removal
Other foot problems may cause heel pain, too. Heel fissures, or deeply cracked skin on the sides and bottom of the heel, bleed, snag hosiery and are very uncomfortable. Sandal straps, dry skin and eczema cause this common but treatable podiatric issue. Dr. Haas recommends shoes with good support and daily application of moisturizers to heal the cracks and soothe sore skin.
Finally, our podiatrists sometimes see a condition called Haglund's Deformity. Basically, Haglund's Deformity is a bump located on the back of the heel bone. Physical irregularities such as a tight Achilles tendon or high arches contribute to the painful problem, but the wrong shoes worsen it, too.
For instance, runners typically wear sneakers which high and stiff backs. These shoes, and others, combined with repetitive motion, increase the size of the heel bone. Anti-inflammatory medications help as does shoe padding or simply changing shoe style. In severe cases, though, the doctors at Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists recommend surgery to reduce the size of the heel bone.
End that heel pain
You can by contacting Albuquerque Associated Podiatrists. Make an appointment for a consultation in Albuquerque, NM, and learn what you can do to have feet that feel great. Call (505) 247-4164.
There are many different types of foot orthotics to resolve a variety of foot problems. The design, materials, and construction combined with the foot condition and/or activity level help determine the best orthotic types for each patient. Our Albuquerque, NM, orthotics specialist, Dr. Zachery Haas, can examine each patient and suggest a custom foot orthotic type for each patient.
Types of Custom Foot Orthotics
Semi-rigid custom foot orthotics are maximum support variations that work great for both work boots and dress shoes. They are long lasting and durable and made of high-density polypropylene. They can be used for most feet issues, but a proper examination from a professional podiatrist is required for treatment.
Rigid orthotics or custom orthotics are used in cases that are advanced. These custom orthotics are made by our Albuquerque orthotics specialist, Dr. Haas, for each patient and their foot problem. He will look at your feet and examine them to design inserts that force your feet back into their correct position. These are the most effective ways to treat a variety of feet problems.
Heat molding orthotics are another option that is used in less severe cases. They are like custom orthotics, they are purchased at a store. They are made of EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate), a specialized type of plastic, that feels like soft rubber. This material gives the wearer great support. The inserts themselves are heated, which softens the material and molds to the shape of the feet as it cools.
Ultimately, learning about the different types of custom foot orthotics is important for anyone with any type of foot problems. Our Albuquerque, NM, orthotics specialist, Dr. Haas, is well versed in a variety of issues and knows how to successfully treat them. Call his office today at (505) 247-4164 to schedule an appointment with him.
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