(814) 337-3668

Blog

Monday, 28 November 2016 22:34

How to Shop for Shoes

shoes2For individuals who are looking for properly-fitting and comfortable shoes such as dress shoes or boots, look for those that offer adequate arch support as well as enough room in the toe box of the shoes for our toes to wiggle, according to Dr. Bob Weil, sports podiatrist. Heels of shoes should also be no higher than an inch and a half. We should also take into consideration the length and width of our feet, especially when getting them measured. Shoes should offer good support, mostly for the arch area.

Finding a properly-fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can treat your foot and ankle concerns.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in proper fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improper fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, properly-fitting shoes are vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about proper shoe fitting.

Monday, 21 November 2016 01:55

What Causes Bunions?

bunions7Bunions can be described as the bony deformities of our foot’s joints. There are several factors that can contribute to the forming and progression of bunions, such as genetics, arthritis, previous injuries and long-term use of improperly-fitting shoes such as high heels. Shoes can play a large role in the overall comfort of our feet, especially for those of us who are avid runners, so it’s important to find the proper shoes to prevent the development of problems such as bunions. If left untreated, bunions may require orthotics and possibly even surgery if they become too severe. Wild neutral running shoes are recommended for women who have arched and neural feet that do not roll inwards or outwards. Wild stability running shoes are recommended for those who have lower-arched feet that tend to roll inward. Wide motion-control running shoes are ideal for those who have flat feet

Untreated bunions can make walking uncomfortable. If you are suffering from bunions, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs and answer any of your related questions.  

What is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs by the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why do Bunions Form?

  • Genetics – susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary
  • Stress on the feet – poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can cause bunions to form

How are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Bunions

Monday, 14 November 2016 12:50

All About Stress Fractures

xrayThe fifth metatarsal is the long bone that connects to the pinky toe on the outside of the foot.  This bone is especially prone to fracture for people involved in any sort of prolonged physical activity, especially team sports.  This is one of the most common injuries in soccer, but many other athletes also suffer this injury.  It is vitally important to never ignore any type of foot pain, on the field or off.  Professionally, there is immense pressure to perform, which can lead to dependency on prescription painkillers.  But the truth is we all need our feet, not just star athletes. The best course of action is always to contact a podiatrist and get to the root of the problem.

Activities where too much pressure is put on the feet can cause stress fractures. To learn more, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can treat your foot and ankle concerns.

Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

The Stress Fractures occur on the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken from too much or too little use. Then the feet and ankles 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. The stress on the feet causes cracks to form in the bones, thus called 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

-play tennis or basketball

-gymnastics

-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 in high impact will aggravate pain.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle.

 

runners20If leg or foot misalignment exists, it may interfere with spinal function. Feet are described as “the foundation of the body.” At birth, most people tend to have perfect feet. By age 20, 80 percent of those with “perfect feet” have developed some type of foot problem, and by the age of 40, nearly everyone has some sort of foot condition. The use of external supports such as heel lifts may significantly reduce biomechanical forces on the lumbar spine. The use of these lifts has been found to help ease structural strains on the body.

If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Biomechanics in Podiatry

Podiatric biomechanics is a particular sector of specialty podiatry with licensed practitioners who are trained to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and lower leg. Biomechanics deals with the forces that act against the body, causing an interference with the biological structures. It focuses on the movement of the ankle, the foot and the forces that interact with them.

A History of Biomechanics
- Biomechanics dates back to the BC era in Egypt where evidence of professional foot care has been recorded.
- In 1974 biomechanics gained a higher profile from the studies of Merton Root, who claimed that by changing or controlling the forces between the ankle and the foot, corrections or conditions could be implemented to gain strength and coordination to the area.

Modern technological improvements are based on past theories and therapeutic processes that provide a better understanding of podiatric concepts for biomechanics. Computers can provide accurate information about the forces and patterns of the feet and lower legs.

Understanding biomechanics of the feet can help improve and eliminate pain, stopping further stress to the foot.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Biomechanics

Monday, 31 October 2016 00:05

Treating Toenail Fungus

athletes foot7Toenail fungus is difficult to hide and at times, may be difficult to treat. Fortunately, there are ways to get rid of it. Nail fungus starts off as a white or yellow spot underneath your toenail. As the fungal infection progresses, it may cause your nail to change color, thicken, or crumble at the edge. Toenail fungus can usually be treated by medicated nail polish, oral antibiotics, medicated nail cream, or nail removal.

For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor will attend to your foot and ankle needs.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

Toenail fungus is a problem which affects many people and is hard to get rid of. Fortunately, there are several methods to go about treating toenail fungus.

Antibiotics & Treatments

Lamisil – is the most commonly effective treatment for toenail fungus. It is available as an antibiotic Terbinafine tablet and cream. Terbinafine is a chemical component which kills fungal growth on the body. Applying regular doses will gradually kill the fungal growth. It is important to keep the area clean and air free.

Talcum powder – applying powder on the feet and shoes helps keep the feet free of moisture and sweat.

Sandals or open toed shoes – wearing these will allow air movement and help keep feet dry. They also expose your feet to light, which fungus cannot tolerate. Socks with moisture wicking material also help as well

Alternative Treatments

There are always surgical procedures that are available for toenail fungus. Some people would like immediate quick removal of toenail fungus. Surgeons will be able to cut through and remove the growth using laser surgery. It is important not to try and remove it yourself. Once removed, your old shoes will need to be replaced to avoid reinfection.  

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Toenail Fungus

foot exercise4Running injuries occur when a part of the body is unable to handle the repetitive stress being placed upon it. 30 percent of beginner runners become injured within their first three months of running. This could be due to a variety of reasons such as: poor technique, poor strength, and fluctuations in training volume. It is important for runners to stretch before they exercise in order to improve flexibility and mobility. Another way to reduce injury risk for runners is to wear proper footwear. Choosing to wear shoes that are comfortable and allow for the athlete to have good movement can greatly reduce the risk of injury.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

Many common running injuries are caused by overuse and overtraining. When the back of the kneecap starts wearing out and starts causing pain in your knee, this is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Runner’s knee is a decrease in strength in your quadriceps and can occur if you’re not wearing properly fitted or supporting shoes. To prevent runner’s knee, focusing on hip strengthening is a good idea, as well as strengthening your quads to keep the kneecaps aligned.

What Are Some Causes of Running Injuries?
- One cause of a common running injury is called iliotibial band syndrome.
- Plantar fasciitis is also another common injury.
- Stress fractures can occur from overtraining, lack of calcium, or even your running style.

Best Ways to Prevent Running Injuries
- Wear footwear that fits properly and suits your running needs.
- Running shoes are the only protective gear that runners have to safeguard them from injury.
- Make a training schedule. Adding strengthening exercises as well as regular stretching can help keep you strong and limber and can lessen the possibility of injuries.
- Stretching keeps muscles limber, this will help you gain better flexibility.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about How to Prevent Running Injuries

Monday, 17 October 2016 10:59

Ben Simmons Breaks Ankle

broken foot5Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers “rolled” his right ankle while playing during the last scrimmage of the 2016 Training Camp at Stockton University in late September. Simmons had an X-ray and MRI done to review his foot condition, and it was later determined that he sustained “a fracture of the fifth metatarsal bone of his right foot.” His playing status for the team was unknown at the time and his foot required further examination to consider his long-term status.

Broken ankles need immediate treatment. If you are seeking treatment,contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Broken Ankles
A broken ankle is experienced when a person fractures their tibia or fibula in the lower leg and ankle area. Both of these bones are attached at the bottom of the leg and combine to form what we know to be our ankle.

When a physician is referring to a break of the ankle, he or she is usually referring to a break in the area where the tibia and fibula are joined to create our ankle joint. Ankles are more prone to fractures because the ankle is an area that suffers a lot of pressure and stress. There are some obvious signs when a person experiences a fractured ankle, and the following symptoms may be present.

Symptoms of a Fractured Ankle

  • Excessive pain when the area is touched or when any pressure is placed on the ankle
  • Swelling around the area
  • Bruising of the area
  • Area appears to be deformed

If you suspect an ankle fracture, it is recommended to seek treatment as soon as possible. The sooner you have your podiatrist diagnose the fracture, the quicker you’ll be on the way towards recovery.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about broken ankles.

Monday, 10 October 2016 03:35

Diet May Affect Arthritic Symptoms

Arthritis5There are several different types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Both diseases involve the progressive wear and tear of the body’s joints, leading to symptoms such as restriction of movement, stiffness, pain, and inflammation. Daily habits and diet have been found to profoundly affect arthritic symptoms, so it is vital that arthritic patients avoid foods high in capsicum, alcohol, caffeine, and smoking. Weight management is also important in preventing the progression of arthritic symptoms.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care

Arthritis is a joint disorder that involves inflammation of different joints in your body, such as in your feet. Arthritis is often caused by a degenerative joint disease and causes mild to severe pain in all affected areas. On top of this, swelling and stiffness in the affected joints can also be a common symptom of arthritis.

In many cases, wearing ill-fitting shoes can worsen the effects and pain of arthritis. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room can help your feet feel more comfortable. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with proper arch support that contour to your feet can help immensely.

Alleviating Arthritic Pain

  • Exercises that stretch the foot can prevent further pain and injury and increase mobility
  • Most of the pain can be alleviated with anti-inflammatory drugs, heat, and topical medications
  • Massages can help to temporarily alleviate pain.

It is best to see your doctor for the treatment that is right for your needs and symptoms. Conditions vary, and a podiatrist can help you determine the right method of care for your feet.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about arthritic foot care

foot injuryAccording to Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, quarterback Russell Wilson sustained a sprained ankle in early September. Wilson suffered the injury playing in the third quarter in the 12-10 win against the Miami Dolphins, when defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh accidentally stepped on his right ankle. “You can hardly tell anything’s wrong with him. We’ll help him in practice during the week to make sure we take care of him, but he’s planning on playing,” said Carroll.

Ankle sprains are common, but need immediate attention. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains take place when the ligaments in your ankle are torn or stretched beyond their limits. There are multiple ways that the ankle can become injured, including twisting or rolling over onto your ankle, putting undue stress on it, or causing trauma to the ankle itself.

What are the Symptoms?

  • Mild to moderate bruising
  • Limited mobility
  • Swelling
  • Discoloration of the skin (depending on severity)

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits can aid in prevention

Treatment of a Sprain

Treatment of a sprain depends on the severity. Many times, people are told to rest and remain off their feet completely, while others are given an air cast. If the sprain is very severe, surgery may be required.

If you have suffered an ankle sprain previously, you may want to consider additional support such as a brace and regular exercises to strengthen the ankle.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about ankle sprains.

Monday, 26 September 2016 00:15

High Heels May Negatively Impact Foot Health

high heel16A study published by the Journal of Applied Physiology has determined that long-term high heel use can have detrimental effects on the legs’ muscles, such as muscle strain and muscle fatigue. According to the study’s abstract, long-term high heel use has been found to “shorten medial gastrocnemius muscle fascicles and increase Achilles tendon stiffness.” The study’s results are consistent with reports that high heel wearers often experience discomfort, pain, and tiredness. It also suggests that “long-term high heel use may compromise muscle efficiency in walking.”

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because their style and societal appeal. Despite this, they can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

What parts my body will be affected by high heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – may shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – they decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain. Also, the vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What kinds of foot problems can develop from wearing high heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How can I still wear high heels and maintain foot health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems. Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet. Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising. If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work. Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Meadville, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about the effects of high heels

Page 3 of 5

Hours / Location

Monday: 9am - 5pm
Tuesday: 9am - 5pm
Wednesday: 9am - 5pm
Thursday: 9am - 5pm
Friday: 9am - 1pm

Associated Foot Health Center
105 Mead Ave
Meadville, PA, 16335

DIRECTIONS