Conditions

How to diagnose and treat Plantar Fasciitis!

Plantar Fasciitis may not be something you have heard much of, yet is a very common issue that is estimated to be affecting over 2 million people in the US alone – the UK isn’t much further behind.

This is a condition that causes the bottom of your heel to hurt, sometimes incredibly painfully. ​Today, we will be going over our methods on how to diagnose, treat, and understand the science behind this.

Fun fact! The name ‘Plantar Fasciitis’ is derived from the word ‘plantar fascia’, which is a broad ligament that basically supports your feet and helps you walk.

WHAT ARE THE TELLTALE SYMPTOMS OF PLANTAR FASCIITIS?

The most obvious symptom would be the actual condition ‒ which is when the bottom of your heel starts to hurt, whether it be from one foot or both.

It should be noted that this pain can affect everyone in different ways, though it is common for the condition to get worse after being sedentary for a while. In addition, it can be sharp, dull, or even spread to other ligaments.

A very notable thing to emphasize is that people usually only feel the pain ​after ​exercise, and not during it; this is a rather difficult symptom to determine, and also makes it easier to ‘overwork or damage’ your feet unknowingly.

If you ever think you may be developing Plantar Fasciitis, don’t hesitate to go to a doctor for a physical checkup ‒ they will most likely just evaluate your coordination or sensitivity, though there are cases where MRIs have been involved.

WHAT CAN CAUSE THIS CONDITION TO OCCUR?

There is a multitude of reasons that Plantar Fasciitis could be happening to you. Arguably the most common one is that you’ve constantly stretched, or torn, your fascia ‒ causing it to become irritated and damaged.

Additionally, obese or overweight people are more likely to start developing this condition; this is because the extra fat can add more pressure to your ligaments, hence meaning your feet have to support that much more weight.

Strangely enough, you can also start suffering from this when you are ​too ​active ‒ mainly if you’re a runner or on your feet 24/7!

HOW CAN YOU TREAT THIS?

We’d strongly advise going to see a qualified podiatrist just like ourselves but a simple home remedy you could try is applying ice to your feet a few times a day (that’s it!). This stops further swelling, and can generally help numb the pain a bit.

Physical therapy plays a major role in any successful recovery; it can help strengthen your muscles and balance. However, there are more drastic measures needed for serious cases ‒ some of which being ​extracorporeal shock therapy​ or ​gastrocnemius recession​.

One major tip would just be to take it easy; doing regular stretching exercises while avoiding putting too much strain on your feet can already help a ton. Additionally, it might be worthwhile to invest in some arch supports or casts.

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How to deal with sweaty feet!

Sweaty feet can surprisingly be a terrible thing to experience. With over 250,000 sweat glands, it can get really unpleasant to deal with this issue.

But why does this even happen? Well, sweating is a critical process our body undergoes to cool ourselves down, and control body temperature. Almost every single body part does this, including our feet!

Did you know there is a condition, called ​plantar hyperhidrosis, ​that causes the excessive sweating of the feet? A staggering 5% of the world population suffer from this.

We aren’t trying to scare you, but if left untreated ‒ you can contract diseases, blisters, infections, and other nasty things! Today, we are going to share our methods for preventing and handling sweaty feet, ranging from home remedies to various treatments.

WASH YOUR FEET DAILY

To save yourself all the struggles in the first place, you can simply dedicate some of your time every day to washing your feet every day. This completely wipes out any bacteria lingering around, and also stops terrible foot odor from emerging.

PICK THE RIGHT SOCKS

You need to prioritize wearing dry and clean socks, especially if you usually wear closed-toe shoes. Make sure to avoid manmade or synthetic materials, since this can trap moisture and lead to odor-related problems (similarly to shoes).

APPLY FOOT DEODORANT OR ANTI-PESPIRANT SPRAY

If deodorants can be used for armpits, is it that hard to believe they can also work for smelly feet? Regardless, an efficient spray can deal with the foul smell, stop incessant sweating, ​and​ protect your feet from bacteria.

SOAK AND DRY YOUR FEET

Foot soaks can work wonders; they can actually kill all sorts of parasites, as well as leave your feet clean as a bonus! The most common treatments involve apple cider vinegar, natural oils, and salts.

Residual moisture can lead to bacteria forming however;​ so after cleansing your feet, make sure to dry them well, in every nook and cranny! You should also make a point to keep your shoes and socks dry as well.

WEAR THE APPROPRIATE SHOES

Getting shoes made out of natural materials (avoid plastic in particular!) is a simple yet effective solution ‒ this is because such substances allow some ‘breathing room’ for your feet. In addition, make sure your shoes are the correct size; if they are too tight, this can lead to ​more​ sweating.

USE POWDERS

Applying an anti-fungal foot powder can help absorb excess moisture. According to Doctor Stephen Weinberg, roll-on products are more effective than sprays, since most of the latter’s “antipespirant action is lost in air”.

If you don’t have such powders on hand, there are many alternatives you can use ‒ some of which being baby powder, cornstarch, and baking soda; t​hese serve the same purpose by keeping your feet dry.

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Verrucae treatment Wimbledon

Our Wandsworth clinic in Earlsfield has recently upgraded its cryotherapy (freezing machine) for the effective treatment of verrucas. We now freeze the verrucas to very cold temperatures which can only be achieved by specialist equipment, not over the counter verruca freezing treatments.

Verrucas by nature, are very hard to treat. But with easy transport links to Tooting, Clapham and Balham our clinic is achieving some remarkable results in the treatment of this very common condition.

Book a new patient assessment today to first have your verrucae diagnosed correctly and then have a treatment plan discussed to solve your problem.

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Foot stress fracture

Foot Stress fracture

Today the southwest podiatry team are based in London bridge involved in a lecture series on fractures of the foot and ankle. Some of the topics discussed include stress fractures in runners and broken ankles after twisting ankles.
Some studies have highlighted that 18-20% of marathon runners may develop a stress fracture of the foot during the course of there training. Stress fracture treatment may include immobilisation in boots, insoles or simple training and footwear modifications.

Call South West Podiatry if you are concerned you may have a foot stress fracture for a new patient assessment on 020 7164 6607

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South London running clubs

South London running clubs
Posted by South West Podiatry on Thursday, November 15, 2012 Under: Conditions
South West Podiatry doesn’t recommend any running club over another, but we do recommended joining a running club. If you are a beginner and want to meet new people and get into the sport or a seasonal professional wanting to improve your times or distances a running club will have something for you.
We have listed below some of the running and triathlon clubs in and around South London. We welcome feed back on what people think of the clubs and what services they have to offer.

  • Clapham Chasers
  • Herne Hill Harriers
  • Clapham Runners
  • Dulwich Runners
  • Wimbledon Windmillers
  • So if you are looking to run around Clapham Common or Wimbledon Common, joining a running club can help you keep fit, and enjoy your running more.

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    Marathon Podiatry

    Your London Marathon training program should be well underway. Some of our podiatry patients are coming close to running their longest runs over the next few weekends though Richmond and the other Royal Parks.
    Running Marathons can take its toll on your body. Knee injuries, stress fractures and heel pain can all arise from poor biomechanics and uneven gait. Sometimes even the most simple insole can offload areas of the foot and prevent injury.
    South West Podiatry specialises in Marathon runners and Triathletes. Our team has undertaken a vast number of endurance events and our experiences is matched by our individual treatment plans to get you back to your sport.

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    BBC say ‘See a Podiatrist’

    Who’s the best person to treat my injury?

    If your injury is minor – not much more than a little stiffness or soreness – it may be that you have simply been doing a little too much too soon and the affected area just needs rest.

    However, there may be underlying reason for the soreness, extrinsic or intrinsic, and it never pays to ignore an injury, especially when it may be very easy to locate its cause. You could be assessed and treated by:

    • Podiatry – podiatrists specialise in diagnosis and treatment of disorders affecting the foot and lower limb. They can provide relief of painful symptoms and also preventive care for people with conditions that may affect the health of their feet. A podiatrist might prescribe and manufacture orthoses – specialist insoles that can address problems like pronation by holding the foot in a stable position and preventing it rolling inwards. Podiatry is rarely offered on the NHS, so you’ll probably have to pay to see a podiatrist privately.
      South West Podiatry is covered by most UK insurance providers, So you may not have to pay for your assessment and treatment. Call today to book an appointment 
    • Physiotherapy – this covers a well-established group of treatments or techniques, frequently involving physical manipulation of the affected area. It’s offered in hospitals, on the high street, in doctors’ surgeries, and often in gyms and sports centres. Physiotherapy is a very broad term and many physiotherapists specialise in a particular area of the body, so you may need some guidance in choosing the right therapist for you. Physiotherapy is available on the NHS, but these days you usually have to wait weeks and months. If you can decide to see a physio privately, you can refer yourself directly.
    • Osteopathy – this is a complementary therapy that focuses on musculo-skeletal problems. It concentrates primarily on problems with muscles, joints and nerves and employs a range of physical and manual techniques. In the UK it’s considered a complementary therapy, so access to osteopathy on the NHS is limited, but some osteopaths work alongside GPs, and GPs are permitted to refer patients to them. You can also go to see them privately without referral.
    • Chiropractic – chiropractors use physical manipulation to treat problems with joints, bones and muscles, and the effects they have on the nervous system. Chiropractors place particular emphasis on the spine, which is why they tend to be associated with treating bad backs. Like osteopathy, chiropractic is only available as an NHS treatment in some areas, depending on the policy of the local primary care trust, or you can see them privately without referral.

    If you do go directly to a therapist outside the NHS, it’s important to check they’re a regulated practitioner, and whoever you see for treatment – on the NHS or not – needs to have skills relevant to your specific problem.

    All the Podiatrists working at South West Podiatry are regulated by the Health & Care Professions Council, the governing body in the UK.

     

    The full BBC article can be viewed athttp://www.bbc.co.uk/health/treatments/healthy_living/fitness/injuries_treatment.shtml

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    Plantar Fasciitis in Wandsworth

    What is plantar fasciitis?

    Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that causes pain in the heel, across the sole of the foot and sometimes into the arch area of the foot too. It is caused by inflammation of the ‘plantar fascia’ ligament. This is a very important ligament, connecting the heel to the ball of the foot and playing a vital role in supporting the arch of your foot – taking the strain when you stand, walk or run.

    What are the symptoms?

    The main symptom of plantar fasciitis is pain in the heel, across the sole of the foot (the part that touches the ground) and sometimes it can spread into the arch area of the foot too. The pain can be described as sharp, burning and aching. Usually the pain comes on slowly – i.e. you think it will go away but it persists. The pain is usually worst when you first place weight on your foot, for example, when you get up in the morning or after long periods of sitting. The pain can worsen as the day goes on and/or after long periods of weight bearing such as standing or walking for a long time. It can feel as though the more you do, the worse the pain gets.

    Why did I get it?

    Plantar fasciitis can affect anybody, but it is most common amongst people over the age of 40. There are many theories as to the development of the condition, these include: over using the ligament by doing too much standing/walking, excessive body weight and altered biomechanics e.g. people with flat feet or high arched feet or those with tight calves causing limited upward movement of the ankle).

    Occupations that require extended periods of weight bearing i.e. those that work shifts of eight hours or more, are also linked with the development of plantar fasciitis.

    How can I treat Plantar Fasciitis?

    Treatment of plantar fasciitis begins with first-line strategies and should these fail then Simon is able to provide all the treatment options required to get you walking again:

    • Padding and strapping. Placing pads in the shoe softens the impact of walking. Strapping helps support the foot and reduce strain on the fascia.
    • Orthotic devices. Custom orthotic devices that fit into your shoe help correct the underlying structural abnormalities causing the plantar fasciitis.
    • Injection therapy. In some cases, corticosteroid injections are used to help reduce the inflammation and relieve pain.
    • Removable walking cast. A removable walking cast may be used to keep your foot immobile for a few weeks to allow it to rest and heal.
    • Night splint. Wearing a night splint allows you to maintain an extended stretch of the plantar fascia while sleeping. This may help reduce the morning pain experienced by some patients.
    • Physical therapy. Exercises and other physical therapy measures may be used to help provide relief.

    What now?

    No matter what kind of treatment you undergo for plantar fasciitis, the underlying causes that led to this condition may remain. Therefore, you will need to continue with preventive measures. Wearing supportive shoes, stretching, and using custom orthotic devices are the mainstay of long-term treatment for plantar fasciitis.

    More information.

    If you have any further questions please get in touch with South West Podiatry who will be able to advise you. Or visit http://www.swpodiatry.co.uk/heel-pain

     

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    London Marathon

    This Sunday the Olympic marathon hits London. Marathon runners have a high foot injury rate requiring podiatry intervention. Do you have a running injury that needs assessing?

    South West Podiatry is based in Wandsworth and Wimbledon and has treated all foot and ankle conditions common to marathon runners including plantar fasciitis and stress fractures of the foot.

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    Wimbledon

    With Wimbledon now completed it is time to get your ankle sprains assessed and treated at South West Podiatry. Our team has worked with elite athletes and the weekend warriors for years perfecting the best diagnosis and treatment plan for individuals. At South West podiatry we have direct access to the Physiotherapy team of ProPhysiotherapy who have clinics in Earlsfield and Wimbledon.

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