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Monday, 29 April 2019 00:00

Methods That May Prevent Falling

Many elderly people who fall may find difficulty in getting up without assistance. Research has shown that twenty percent of people in their mid-sixties will endure a fall, and many of these falls may lead to serious injuries. This is one reason why it is important to implement methods to help prevent falling. These may include learning about side effects that may occur while existing medications are taken, wearing glasses, using hearing aids consistently, and removing any clutter in the home that may be present. It may also be helpful to wear shoes that fit correctly, and using grab bars in the bathroom and shower area can play a significant role in preventing falls. If you would like additional information about the importance of falls prevention, please consult with a podiatrist.

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. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna 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 offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Tuesday, 23 April 2019 00:00

How to Care for Elderly Feet

An important facet of caring for elderly people may involve paying close attention to their feet. This can be accomplished by noticing if there are any changes that may have occurred. There are symptoms to look for which may include open sores, discoloration, or pain. There are measures that can be implemented which may prevent uncomfortable foot conditions from developing. Cracked heels may be avoided by washing and drying the feet thoroughly, followed by utilizing a moisturizing cream. Additionally, it’s important to properly trim the toenails which may prevent ingrown toenails from developing. It may be beneficial to measure the feet frequently, and buy appropriate footwear that can accommodate changes in size. If you would like additional information about how to care for elderly feet, it is suggested that you speak to a podiatrist.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna 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 offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 15 April 2019 00:00

Practicing Yoga May Benefit the Feet

As the weather gets warmer, many people enjoy spending time outdoors. When the feet are properly stretched, aches and pains in the feet may diminish, and this can help to make daily activities more enjoyable. Research has indicated that practicing yoga may be beneficial in developing balanced alignment in the feet, which may positively affect the overall health of the body. Additionally, when proper stretching techniques are implemented, the healing process may be accelerated in existing foot conditions. One particular stretch, called "weaving," may be helpful in finding mild relief from an aching bunion. This is achieved by weaving your fingers through the toes on the opposite foot, creating space between them. If you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching the feet, it is suggested that you speak to a podiatrist.

Why Stretching is Important for Your Feet

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first to determine if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous exercise, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

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

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Monday, 08 April 2019 00:00

Symptoms of Ingrown Toenails

The soft tissue on the side of the big toe may become inflamed if a condition known as an ingrown toenail exists. This may occur when the nail grows into the skin surrounding the big toe, and is known to cause pain and discomfort. Many patients notice symptoms that may include pain in the affected toe and surrounding areas, swelling, or a discharge draining from the toe. There may be methods that can be implemented which may help to prevent ingrown toenails. These may include trimming the toenails straight across, and wearing shoes that have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Mild relief may be found when the foot is soaked in warm water frequently throughout the day. If your ingrown toenail becomes infected, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

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

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Monday, 01 April 2019 00:00

What Is a Bunion?

Bunions are visible deformities located at the joint of the big toe and they can cause discomfort or pain. Bunions are either genetic or arthritic. Genetic bunions are hereditary, while arthritic bunions are caused by external factors. Examples of external factors are regularly wearing heels or experiencing an injury to the foot. Both types of bunions can vary in their size and degree of pain. The size of a bunion is not indicative of how much discomfort and pain it causes. It is possible for a large bunion to cause no pain, while a small bunion may result in extreme pain. The amount of pain a bunion causes also increases by the amount of pressure applied to the joint and how regularly you are on your feet. If you have a bunion and it concerns you, then it is recommended that you speak with a podiatrist to learn more about the condition.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why Do Bunions Form?

Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How Are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

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

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Ankle pain is the general term that encompasses several types of chronic foot conditions and injuries. These may include ankle arthritis, stress fractures, and sprains. There are various symptoms that are associated with different types of ankle injuries, which may consist of pain, throbbing, or burning. If your ankle is sprained, it generally means that an injury has occurred to the ligaments that connect the bones together. This may happen from unexpectedly stepping off a curb, falling, or participating in running and jumping activities. This type of injury may often be accompanied by pain, bruising, or swelling. Additionally, rheumatoid arthritis is considered to be an autoimmune condition, and may attack the joints in the ankle. If you have any type of ankle pain, it is advised that you speak to a podiatrist as quickly as possible who can determine the cause and begin proper treatment.

Ankle pain can be caused by a number of problems and may be potentially serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.

Causes

The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Bursitis
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms

Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.

Diagnosis

Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

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

 

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Monday, 18 March 2019 00:00

Symptoms of Toenail Fungus

One of the first symptoms of a condition that is known as toenail fungus is nail discoloration. Additionally, the nails may become thickened and brittle, and it is common for it to spread to other nails. This particular fungus lives and thrives in warm and moist environments which may include public pools, shower room floors, or locker rooms. Some patients may develop this fungus by having wet nails for the majority of the time, and this may come from wearing sweaty shoes and socks. People who are diabetic or have a weakened immune system may benefit from seeking immediate treatment. These patients may experience sores that do not heal properly, and an early diagnosis may determine if it is a nail infection. If you feel you may have this condition, it is suggested to speak to a podiatrist who can properly diagnosis and treat this ailment.

For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

Toenail fungus is a condition that affects many people and can be especially hard to get rid of. Fortunately, there are several methods to go about treating and avoiding it.

Antifungals & Deterrence

Oral antifungal medicine has been shown to be effective in many cases. It is important to consult with a podiatrist to determine the proper regiment for you, or potentially explore other options.

Applying foot powder on the feet and shoes helps keep the feet free of moisture and sweat.

Sandals or open toed shoes – Wearing these will allow air movement and help keep feet dry. They also expose your feet to light, which fungus cannot tolerate. Socks with moisture wicking material also help as well.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Warts are very common and come in many different forms. Plantar warts, also known as verrucae warts, differ from most other warts for various reasons. They only form on the sole of the foot and are a result of the human papillomavirus (HPV). They can easily be caught in places where there is moisture such as, locker rooms, pool areas, or saunas. Unlike most warts, plantar warts grow inward instead of outward. They plant themselves in the thick skin on the bottom of the foot, which can result in discomfort or pain. Discomfort and pain will increase when pressure is applied to the foot. Visually, they are flat, circular and have a small dent in the middle. Usually, they are dry with a black spot in the middle. If you think you might have plantar warts on the sole of your foot, then it is suggested you speak with a podiatrist in order to learn about treatment options.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

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Tuesday, 05 March 2019 00:00

Noticeable Symptoms of Neuropathy

If you experience a tingling or numbing sensation in the nerves of the feet, you may have a condition that is referred to as peripheral neuropathy. This may occur as a result of genetic traits or medical conditions that may include thyroid disorders or diabetes. Additionally, the aging process or taking certain medications may add to the risk of developing neuropathy. Some of the symptoms that may be noticed can include weakness, clumsiness, or a loss of balance. Patients may feel cramping in the hands and feet or may feel dizzy while standing up from a chair. There may be medications that may be effective in treating neuropathy. If this condition occurs as a result of radiation or chemotherapy, successful recovery may take eighteen months or longer. If you are experiencing any symptoms of this condition, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can properly guide you toward the correct treatment techniques.

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. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna 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 Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 25 February 2019 00:00

Children’s Feet and Walking Barefoot

A child is generally born with flat feet, and the arches will fully develop by the age of eighteen. In the early months, there are fat pads on the soles of the feet, which make the feet soft and supple. The arch will begin to form as the child learns to walk, and the foot becomes stronger to accommodate the weight of the body. It is beneficial if the child walks barefoot indoors, and this may help to strengthen the muscles and tendons in the feet. Additionally, the toes become stronger as the grasping action occurs. Research has indicated that a child’s foot grows rapidly in the first five years, and should be properly measured every few months. When shoes are purchased, they should have adequate room for the toes to move freely, and proper support is important for maintaining the stability that is needed for walking. If you would like additional information about children’s foot health, it is advised to speak to a podiatrist who can answer any questions you may have.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

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

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