Foot Health

Posted on 06-23-2024 in Foot/Ankle by Dr. Sonya Ahmed, Dr. Erik Nilssen

A study in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise noted that the average person takes 5,117 steps per day. With so much time on our feet, Foot Health Awareness Month in April is an opportunity to focus on the health of our feet and give them the attention they deserve.

Injuries and conditions of the foot can cause significant pain and impact mobility. Health In Aging noted that 87% of people experience foot pain during their lifetime for various reasons. Foot problems can also indicate other underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, arthritis and heart disease. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, foot complications are a leading cause of hospitalizations for people with diabetes.

While early detection and treatment can prevent long-term complications, the following tips serve as preventative measures and can improve your quality of life today!

  • Keep your feet clean and dry. Wash your feet daily with soap and water and dry them thoroughly afterward to avoid fungal infections. Follow up with a good moisturizer to prevent cracked heels, leading to more significant wounds or infections.
  • Wear comfortable shoes. Choose shoes that fit well, have low heels and provide proper arch support. High heels and tight-fitting shoes can cause pain and even lead to foot problems like bunions, hammertoes, and plantar fasciitis. Measuring your feet regularly can also ensure proper fit as the size of your feet may change over time.
  • Trim your toenails regularly. Cut your toenails straight across and avoid cutting them too short to help prevent ingrown toenails.
  • Stretch before exercising. Stretching your toes and rolling a tennis ball under your foot can help prevent foot pain and injury before physical activity. Ankles and the lower leg should also be stretched regularly.
  • Apply sunscreen. Don't forget to apply sunscreen to feet and ankles when outdoors to prevent sunburn and skin cancer.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight causes increased pressure on your feet, leading to osteoarthritis, stress fractures and circulatory issues in the lower extremities.
  • Pay attention to your feet. If you notice swelling, redness, or pain in your feet and have not sustained an injury, these could be signs of an underlying health condition.

If you have a foot condition or injury, it's important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible to avoid potential long-term problems. In addition to the conditions mentioned above, ankle sprains, Achilles tendon ruptures and flat foot are also common and can cause significant pain and discomfort. Visit the common conditions section to learn more about these and other issues that impact the lower extremities.

At North Florida Bone & Joint Specialists, Dr. Sonya Ahmed and Dr. Erik Nilssen specialize in various foot and ankle conditions and offer a wide range of innovative procedures, including minimally invasive treatment and surgical intervention. On-site physical therapy is also available at the Davis Highway and Midway offices.

If you have any questions or concerns about your foot health, don't hesitate to contact our office at 850-435-4800 or complete our online Appointment Request form to schedule a visit with one of our foot and ankle orthopaedic experts.




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