Genetics, injury, high impact activities, and changes in weight all contribute to the common foot issues listed below. We believe all of them can be remedied with the proper footwear, orthotic support and pedorthic modifications.
Over 3 million people suffer from plantar fasciitis each year. On average, we help 5-10 people a day with plantar fasciitis, which makes it the most common issue we see. The technical definition is irrita
tion and swelling of extra immune cells of the fascia. This causes pain under the heel, especially in the morning or after sitting for periods of time. Plantar fasciitis can effect one or both feet, and cause burning and stiffness in your foot.
The main reason we believe plantar fasciitis is becoming so common is because many shoe companies are making shoes with memory foam. Soft, squishy shoes (like Skechers or Crocs) allow the foot to flatten and roll in (pronate). This leads to an over-stretching of the plantar fascia, causing a “sprain” on the bottom of your foot. High impact activities, falling arches, flat feet are also causes for plantar fasciitis.
Another very common pathology we see is bunions, which is a protrusion of the hallux (big toe) joint. Most often thought to be caused by genetics, bunions are also a result of over-pronation, wearing shoes that are too tight, and certain foot shapes. Bunions cause irritation, redness and sores on the big toe joint. Taking the pressure off of the forefoot can help alleviate the pain and pressure on bunions.
The nerves between two toes (usually the 3rd and 4th toes) become inflamed, causing a pebble-like feeling in the forefoot. Symptoms also include pain in the forefoot, including burning, cramping and numbness. Causes are believed to include wearing high heeled shoes, frequent kneeling, and over pronation of the foot.
Usually occurring on the second toe, the end of toe bends downward, and the middle joint bends upward. The medically accepted cause of a hammer toe is congenital or acquired problems with peripheral nerves in the legs or spinal cord. Other causes include wearing shoes that are too short, genetics and an imbalance between bones and muscles in the lower extremities.
The American Podiatric Medical Association (AMPA) defines Haglund’s deformity as “a bony enlargement of the back of the heel bone. Sometimes it’s called “pump bump” because the deformity often occurs in women who wear pumps.” Blisters may develop on the back of the heel because shoes rub on the protrusion.
Commonly confused with plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis is an inflammation of the Achilles tendon, located on the back of your heel. This tendon connects the calf muscle to the heel bone. Sharp pain and swelling in the calf and/or heel when walking or running cause inflammation around your heel. This condition is a common injury due to high impact sports.
Sesamoids are two bones located under the big toe (hallux) joint. These bones are only connected by tendons. When these tendons become inflamed, it’s called sesamoiditis. This condition starts as a dull ache, and continues to get worse with activity, causing pain in the forefoot, especially near the big toe joint. People who wear shoes with too much heel elevation, and participate in high impact activities (such as running and dancing) are candidates to develop sesamoiditis.
Often called “adult acquired flatfoot,” PTTD is developed during adulthood. It is the swelling on the inside (medial side) of foot near the ankle. The posterior tibial tendon attaches the calf muscle to the bones on the inside of the foot. This tendon holds the arch up when walking.
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