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How to Avoid Falling in Your Own Home 

25 Jan 2022 Blog

Once you reach the age of 65, you are much more likely to fall and suffer a serious injury. With most people in this age group taking a tumble in their own home, it makes sense to keep your own dwelling as safe as possible to avoid “falling” into this category yourself. First, make sure there is an adequate amount of lighting throughout your home. You’ll also want to remove tripping hazards such as clutter, loose rugs, unsecured wires, and unstable furniture. Fix any uneven surfaces in and around your home. Install grab bars in the shower and next to the commode, as well as non-slip mats in the bathroom and kitchen. Keep stairs clear of clutter, make sure the handrails on your stairs are secure and that you use them, and always take your time walking up and down the stairs. Be mindful of your steps and try not to rush around. It is also important to identify any medically related risk factors such as gait abnormalities or other foot conditions that may affect your balance and sure-footedness. Make an appointment with a podiatrist who can offer advice on proper footwear, and fix any foot or ankle conditions that may be compromising your foot health.

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 one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Falls Prevention

Why Does My Ankle Feel Unstable?

18 Jan 2022 Blog

Many athletes, and others, who have previously sprained an ankle, may frequently experience their ankle giving way on the outer side. This may be a case of chronic ankle instability. The condition normally occurs when doing an activity, but in some cases it can happen even while you are standing still. Symptoms include turning the ankle during sports or other activities, swelling, pain, and a wobbly feeling in the ankle. This instability may be caused by stretched ligaments from a sprain that has not fully healed. Treatment can involve exercises to strengthen the muscles around the affected area, wearing a brace to increase joint support, and taking certain medications. It would be wise to consult a podiatrist if you are experiencing ankle instability to determine the extent of treatment that is necessary. In some cases, surgery may be an alternative, and after an exam your podiatrist can review the options.

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors 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
  • 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 one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Tips for Preventing Diabetic Foot Ulcers

11 Jan 2022 Blog

Many diabetics are at risk of developing foot ulcers that are typically found under the big toe and the ball of the foot. If an ulcer goes undetected, it can lead to a deterioration of the skin, right down to the bone. And if infected, it can become life threatening. About a quarter of all diabetics develop ulcers, but there are ways to keep them from forming in the first place. It’s important to check your feet daily, looking for skin tears, calluses, blisters or any open cut, sore or wound. Keep your feet clean by washing them in warm soapy water and thoroughly drying them, especially between the toes. Apply lotion to keep the feet from drying out and cracking. Avoid going barefoot or wearing shoes without socks. Some other tips include, wearing shoes that fit properly, taking prescribed medications, checking sugar levels and exercising regularly. If calluses or corns have formed on your feet, it is wise to make an appointment with a podiatrist, who can safely remove them and check your feet for any other skin problems.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Diabetic Foot Conditions

Sports Related Injuries of the Foot and Ankle

4 Jan 2022 Blog

There are several types of foot and ankle injuries that can occur when playing sports. The most common sports injury is an ankle sprain. It is important for ankle sprains to be diagnosed and treated professionally, as an improperly healed sprain can lead to additional sprains, chronic ankle instability, and arthritis. Another type of injury athletes face involves the Achilles tendon, which can become inflamed, injured, torn, or even ruptured from repetitive activity or trauma. An inflammation of the plantar fascia on the sole of the foot (plantar fasciitis) can be caused by overuse or wearing shoes that are worn out or inappropriate for the sport being played. Running and court sports can lead to a compression of the nerve between the third and fourth toes. This causes the tissue surrounding the nerve to thicken and, left untreated, may lead to nerve damage. Stress fractures are another type of sports injury where a tiny crack develops over time in a bone due to repetitive activity, poor footwear, changes in activity, or other factors. If you have suffered any type of foot or ankle injury while playing sports, it is suggested that you contact a podiatrist as soon as possible.

Ankle and foot injuries are common among athletes and in many sports. They can be caused by several problems and may be potentially serious. If you are feeling pain or think you were injured in a sporting event or when exercising, consult with one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Common Injuries

The most common injuries that occur in sporting activities include:

  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains
  • Broken Foot
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Stress Fractures
  • Turf Toe

Symptoms

Symptoms vary depending upon the injury and in some cases, there may be no symptoms at all. However, in most cases, some form of symptom is experienced. Pain, aching, burning, bruising, tenderness, tightness or stiffness, sensation loss, difficulty moving, and swelling are the most common symptoms.

Treatment

Just as symptoms vary depending upon the injury, so do treatment options. A common treatment method is known as the RICE method. This method involves rest, applying ice, compression and elevating the afflicted foot or ankle. If the injury appears to be more serious, surgery might be required, such as arthroscopic or reconstructive surgery. Lastly, rehabilitation or therapy might be needed to gain full functionality in the afflicted area. Any discomfort experienced by an athlete must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Sports Related Foot and Ankle Injuries

Can You Have Athlete’s Foot Without Symptoms?

28 Dec 2021 Blog

Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection of the skin on the feet. While it usually causes itching, burning, stinging, and peeling skin, sometimes a person can have athlete’s foot with no symptoms at all. In those cases, the person will likely be unaware that they have an infection. Some people may have only very mild symptoms, and mistake athlete’s foot for dry skin on the soles of their feet. Athlete’s foot can be very contagious, capable of spreading from person to person and from one part of the body to another. If you suspect that you may have athlete’s foot, it is strongly suggested that you see a podiatrist for proper treatment. 

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists.  Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Athlete’s Foot

Falling: Causes and Prevention

21 Dec 2021 Blog

Falls are a leading cause of injury among older adults. In fact, every year a third of all Americans aged 65 or older experience a fall. Falls among the elderly can cause serious injury and mobility issues, as well as damage to their self-esteem and independence. Falls are typically caused by muscle weakness, mobility or balance issues, the side-effects of a medication, or the fear of falling. The best way to prevent falls is to exercise regularly, implement specific measures to make the home environment safer, manage medications, and maintain proper foot and ankle health. For more information about preventing falls, 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 one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Falls Prevention

How the Feet Age

21 Dec 2021 Blog

As the feet age over time, they begin to wear down. For example, a lot of the cushioning and the fat pads of the heel and ball of the foot begins to wear away. The skin on the feet loses elasticity and the nails become more brittle. Bone deformities and other conditions, like bunions and arthritis, may lead to an increased risk of falls. Due to the different affects aging can have on the feet, it is very important to implement routine foot care and daily inspections. If you notice that the skin on your feet has become dry, or if you are experiencing a burning or tingling sensation in your feet, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist right away. A podiatrist can properly diagnose and treat a wide variety of foot conditions. If it becomes too difficult to inspect your feet daily, it is suggested to schedule regular checkups with a podiatrist, especially if you have diabetes.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Taking Care of Elderly Feet

What Can Cause a Stress Fracture?

14 Dec 2021 Blog

Stress fractures in the feet are a common injury, particularly among athletes. They can be caused by any activity that puts increased pressure on the feet, from playing a high impact sport to starting a new workout routine. A sudden increase in activity, for example, running for much longer than usual, can overload the bones in your feet. Changing the surface that you train on can have a similar effect, specifically if you are moving from a soft surface, like turf, to a hard one like asphalt. Having an improper running technique or wearing the wrong shoes can also lead to stress fractures. If you are suffering from any type of foot pain, please seek the care of a podiatrist. 

Activities where too much pressure is put on the feet can cause stress fractures. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep your pain free and on your feet.

Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

Stress fractures occur in the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken from too much or too little use.  The feet and ankles then lose support when walking or running from the impact of the ground. Since there is no protection, the bones receive the full impact of each step. Stress on the feet can cause cracks to form in the bones, thus creating stress fractures.

What Are Stress Fractures?

Stress fractures occur frequently in individuals whose daily activities cause great impact on the feet and ankles. Stress factors are most common among:

  • Runners                                  
  • People affected with Osteoporosis
  • Tennis or basketball players
  • Gymnasts
  • High impact workouts

Symptoms

Pain from the fractures occur in the area of the fractures and can be constant or intermittent. It will often cause sharp or dull pain with swelling and tenderness. Engaging in any kind of activity which involves high impact will aggravate pain.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

Why Some People Sweat Excessively on Their Feet

7 Dec 2021 Blog

Thermoregulation is the body’s process of maintaining its core internal temperature, which is typically between 98°F and 100°F. Sweating is one of the mechanisms the body uses to cool down because as sweat evaporates it cools the skin, which lowers our internal temperature. Excessive sweating in specific areas of the skin is known as hyperhidrosis, or sometimes is referred to as plantar hyperhidrosis when it occurs in the feet. The specific cause of Hyperhidrosis is unknown, however its possible triggers are believed to include emotions, hormones, physical activity, or brain signals which inaccurately prompt sweat glands to overreact even when it is not necessary for thermoregulation. Sweat that sits stagnant on the skin of the feet can compromise the top layer of skin, making it more susceptible to bacteria which can create odor and even expose the body to more serious bacteria. Podiatrists have a variety of treatment options to help control this embarrassing and uncomfortable condition.

If you are suffering from hyperhidrosis contact one of our podiatrists of Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.

Hyperhidrosis of the Feet

Hyperhidrosis is a rare disorder that can cause people to have excessive sweating of their feet. This can usually occur all on its own without rigorous activity involved. People who suffer from hyperhidrosis may also experience sweaty palms.

Although it is said that sweating is a healthy process meant to cool down the body temperature and to maintain a proper internal temperature, hyperhidrosis may prove to be a huge hindrance on a person’s everyday life.

Plantar hyperhidrosis is considered to be the main form of hyperhidrosis. Secondary hyperhidrosis can refer to sweating that occurs in areas other than the feet or hands and armpits. Often this may be a sign of it being related to another medical condition such as menopause, hyperthyroidism and even Parkinson’s disease.

In order to alleviate this condition, it is important to see your doctor so that they may prescribe the necessary medications so that you can begin to live a normal life again. If this is left untreated, it is said that it will persist throughout an individual’s life.

A last resort approach would be surgery, but it is best to speak with your doctor to find out what may be the best treatment for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Hyperhidrosis of the Feet

Indications of Plantar Fasciitis

30 Nov 2021 Blog

If you have heel pain that is worse in the morning, after long periods of standing, or after working out, you may have plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is a result of inflammation or a partial tearing of the tissue band that runs along the bottom of the foot, known as the plantar fascia. Plantar fasciitis is normally an overuse injury that comes from activities that put stress on the plantar fascia (like running). Because of this, the pain from plantar fasciitis usually gets worse over time. Other factors that may lead to plantar fasciitis include obesity, flat feet, high arches, or tight calf muscles. Because of the negative impact that plantar fasciitis can have on everyday activities, patients that are struggling with heel pain should consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lake in the Hills, Cary, Fox Lake, Crystal Lake, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, and Hinsdale, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis

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