Monday, November 12, 2012

Foot Health During Pregnancy

Podiatrist's encounter many foot problems during and after pregnancy. From cramps and itchiness to swelling and aching, our feet can often feel very uncomfortable throughout pregnancy and following the birth. Hormonal changes and natural weight gain have a huge impact on the body and the feet bear the brunt of the major changes that a woman's body will go through.

Swollen feet, swollen ankles and arch and heel pain are the main causes of foot pain in pregnant women. Muscles and ligaments stretch and soften because of an increase in the ovarian hormone relaxin, which makes your feet more prone to ankle and ligament strains on a daily basis.

The choice of footwear can also be a factor in the cause of foot problems during pregnancy. A shoe with a heel of approximately 1.2in (3cm) is recommended as they will help to shift the weight further forward on the feet. This can help to reduce any pain or discomfort. Wide fitting and supportive shoes will minimise discomfort and help to avoid long term damage. Choosing a shoe with a strap can help the shoe to stay in place although fiddly straps can sometimes cause problems in later stages of the pregnancy when you may struggle to reach your feet.

If high heels are a must they should only be worn occasionally or when you know you will be able to sit down through the day. On a daily basis, a supportive shoe should be worn.

When shopping for shoes try to shop later in the day as feet can swell throughout the day. Ensure that the shoes fit well before you leave the shop as it is a common myth that you can break in a pair of shoes - this is not true. Shoes with a round or square toe are recommended. If you are buying boots, make sure that there is room in the calf area as they calves can swell. Choose a boot with a side zip fastening as they will be easier to take on and off - this will be much more appreciated towards the end of your pregnancy!

Keeping active is also recommended to help reduce the risk of cramps and swelling. Do check with your midwife or GP before starting an exercise program.

If you do experience arch pain or general foot pain make an appointment with your Podiatrist to see how he or she could help you. If necessary an orthotic device can be prescribed to make your feet feel much more comfortable - as any pregnant woman will know, this may provide much needed relief.

Orthotic Treatments: Easy Solution for Foot and Back Problems

Orthotic treatments can treat many postural problems of the human body successfully. It includes severe foot ache and pain in the joints and muscles of the legs. Orthotic treatments effectively re-position the structure of your feet to achieve optimum skeletal balance, thereby reducing the stress on the joints that cause immense discomfort. They do this by controlling joint movement and by rectifying the angles to prevent excessive motion. Often, though not always, back pain has its root in the position of the pelvis which in turn is affected by one's way of walking. There are many different types of orthotic treatments. The type used depends on the most common activity which the patient is involved in, the shoes the patient wants to wear, and the basic foot problem.

Orthotic treatments do a lot more than just supporting the arches. They realign the feet and ankles and restores faulty foot function. Orthotics is a very effective device for patients with severe flat feet, painful ankles, and drop foot problems. Additionally, Orthotics aids even weight distribution and takes the pressure off sore spots in the heels, ball of the foot, corns, and between the toes. Though it is not their main purpose, Orthotics provides some degree of shock absorption as well. Doctors who are skilled in treating knee problems will advise you to opt for Orthotic aids as they would be very helpful.

Orthopedic shoes are specially-designed footwear that relieves discomfort associated with many foot and ankle disorders. They may also be worn by individuals with Diabetes or people with unequal leg length. These shoes typically have a low heel, tend to be wide with a particularly wide toe box, and have a firm heel to provide extra support. Some may also have a removable orthotic insole and inserts to provide extra arch support. The footwear can be designed and manufactured to the patient's own medical requirements.

There are many clinics with highly experienced Orthotic specialists to provide Orthotic treatments to reduce pain and aid comfort. They also have highly skilled Orthotists specializing in Men's Orthopedic Shoes. They can help you find your exact requirement for knee braces, ankle supports, and sports orthotic insoles.รข€¨They also have many years of experience providing Ladies Orthopedic Shoes that are both fashionable and functional. Orthotics that is not manufactured specifically for your needs can result in pain by stressing out your muscles, bones, and joints.

Custom-made Orthotics should be designed specifically for you and your footwear. The provider should evaluate how you walk while wearing the Orthotics. The provider should educate you on things like breaking into your new Orthotics, lifespan, and fitting specifications. You should also be made aware of any warning signs when the Orthotics are not working properly and should be instructed to return them if you experience any discomfort. Many providers use traditional methods to produce modern, stylish, and fashionable Orthopedic footwear to suit your needs, whether it is a smart pair of business shoes to wear for work, a pair of trainers to exercise in, or sandals to wear during the summer. Although Orthotic treatments can often be a useful tool in the management of these common injuries, it is prudent and reasonable to try standard treatments first.

Some Alternative Treatments for Toenail Fungus

Toenail fungus is often very hard to treat. Even once treated it may come back again. There are alternative treatments available for this condition but the solution is not a quick one. It can take four to six months to get rid of the infection. In some cases the entire nail has to be re-grown.

There are four types of fungal infection called onychomycosis. This is the most common form of infection found on the toe nails. Of these the most common starts on the tip of the toe nail. It penetrates all the layers and then expands down to the cuticle. There is another type that works in the opposite direction from base to tip of nail. One type that is not as common, starts out as just a small spot on a nail but can expand throughout the surface, remaining on the top layers. The Candida form will infect the skin that surrounds the nails.

A fungus is something that must be found at the initial stages. This makes it easier to remedy and keep from recurring. At the first sign of a white or yellow spot on the nail, a doctor should be seen. They can test the area to determine what it is and how to treat it.

Although the symptoms of this infection are most often cosmetic, it can be a source of embarrassment for those who have it. The nail becomes thicker and thicker then has a cracked appearance. It may become brittle and start crumbling from the tip down. The shape may be distorted and the nail loses its natural shine. It may be a severe case and involve pain and a foul odor.

The infection being in the nail makes it so the body is unable to fight the infection. All nails have keratin in them and fungus feeds off of it and grows. It should not be ignored because the damage is sometimes permanent. The nail may fall away from the skin of the toe and it is possible to get cellulites, a skin condition.

The medicine that is usually prescribed for this condition may have some unpleasant side effects. Some find it to be quite expensive, partly because of the amount of time it must be taken. The topical treatments found in the drug store work well for as long as they are being used. Once they are stopped the condition returns.

Some alternative remedies are very inexpensive. Vinegar has been found to have the ability to inhibit bacteria growth. A foot bath of two parts water and one part vinegar may provide some relief. Soak feet each day for about 15 minutes. Oregano oil is a very strong remedy. It contains antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti fungal and anti parasitic properties. A few drops mixed with olive oil can be rubbed into nails every day. Do not use for longer than three weeks. Tea tree oil acts as an antiseptic and a fungicide. It kills fungus and prohibits the growth of microorganisms. Combine tea tree oil, olive oil and thyme oil and rub into nails daily.

Toenail fungus is something that can be prevented in most cases, although it can be hereditary. Be sure to get to a doctor immediately if an infection is suspected. Keep feet clean and dry with socks that absorb sweat and keep shoes on in public showers and bathrooms.