Helpful Hints

Stretching

I recommend stretching to everyone. A good stretch for everyday that doesn't take too long to do is this one:

  • With your lace up shoes on, stand next to a wall and put your left foot on a chair seat (or other surface) at a comfortable height directly in front of you, letting the back of the heel rest on the chair. Let the shoe hold your toes at 90 degrees to the leg, don't pull your toes back.
  • Make sure your hips are perpendicular to the leg (90 degrees).
  • You will feel a gentle stretch all along the back of your leg. If this is causing pain you are up too high. It is important to stand up straight! Otherwise the lower back may tilt forward, reducing the effectiveness of the stretch.
  • HOLD THE STRETCH for 1 minute.
  • Now stretch the other leg.
  • Repeat. This stretch is good for many lower extremity tendon/ligament problems including heel pain.

Shoes

When looking for shoes follow these helpful guidelines:

  • Always buy shoes at the end of the day since your feet may swell.
  • Bring someone with you to check shoe fit. This should be done with you standing up and your friend checking the toe (need 1/2 inch of free space at the end of your longest toe, which may be your 2nd toe). The width should be such that, while standing still, you feel pressure on the heel and middle of your foot but not at the ball of your foot or toes.
  • Check the heel (heel counter). If you can easily move it, this shoe will have less control. I like a very rigid heel counter for best control and comfort. Keep in mind that even if you have a rigid heel counter, if you have room INSIDE the heel, your heel will still move around and the shoe may be less effective.
  • If you wear over the counter or custom made orthotics please try them in any new shoe BEFORE you buy them. Depending on the type of orthotic and the type of shoe this may be tough. I may be able to adjust your orthotic to fit your shoe for a small fee.
  • For sneakers keep in mind that the soft EVA midsoles will wear out quickly - the replacement rule is 350 miles or 6 months.
    • I like to say if you wear the sneaker...
      • 1-3 days a week replace in 6 months
      • 4-5 days = 5 months
      • 6-7 days = 3-4 months
    • This doesn't mean that now you have a pair of garden shoes! These shoes are DONE. Throw them out and do yourself a big favor. Many injuries are caused by wearing an old shoe (or a cheaply made shoe).

Toenail Trimming

I like to trim nails straight across in most cases. The only exception is fungal toenails. These nails are deformed and many times loose, so need to be cut differently. If you have nail edges that seem to grow down on the edges you probably have ingrown toenails and need to have the edges permanently removed. If you want to try to avoid the procedure keep the sides grown out past the skin folds and apply Vaseline to the edges if they get tough.

Athletes Feet

Skin fungus of the feet is caused by increased moisture, trauma to the skin, heat, wearing old shoes and immune system compromise. I like to have patients treat mild itching with gold bond medicated powder daily to feet. If there are little blisters with clear fluid you need to use a prescription cream or Lamisil tablets if severe. If your feet sweat excessively I will prescribe a roll on antiperspirant for your feet.

Sweaty Feet (Hyperhidrosis)

For excessive moisture (your socks get wet/damp at the end of the day) generally I treat this with Formadon or 10% Formalin, two products with formaldehyde that stop sweat glands from overworking. This may be used twice a week up to daily for excessive moisture.