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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

Monday, 19 September 2016 23:49

DIY Pedicures

feet7Pedicures are very important when it comes to maintaining healthy feet. Prior to giving yourself a pedicure, you should soak your feet in hot water with bath salts or oils. Soaking your feet will help soften calluses and remove any unwanted particles from your skin. The next step in your DIY pedicure is to trim your toenails. Trimming your toenails will help prevent dirt from being trapped underneath them. You should be careful to cut straight across when trimming your nails, in order to prevent ingrown toenails. Be sure to file your nails in the same direction in order to avoid damaging your nails.

Every day foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checkedcontact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Dr. Barretta can provide the care you need to keep your pain free and on your feet.

Every Day Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. After all, without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks. It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before, for example.

For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops.

Also, wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

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 Everyday Foot Care

Monday, 12 September 2016 13:53

How to Get Rid of Ingrown Toenails

plantar fasciitis6Ingrown toenails occur when the corner of your nail grows downward instead of outward. This can be caused by wearing shoes that are too small, or cutting your toenails improperly. The first step to getting rid of an ingrown toenail is to pull the nail away from the skin. Prior to doing this, you should soak the affected toe in saltwater for 10-15 minutes in order to reduce swelling. If your attempt to remove the ingrown toenail at home doesn’t work, you should go see a podiatrist.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Dr. Barretta will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

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 Ingrown Toenails

Monday, 05 September 2016 11:42

Dillon Brooks Undergoes Foot Surgery

ankle surgeryOregon’s Dillon Brooks has recently decided to undergo foot surgery. Consequently, he will not be able to join the Ducks on their trip to Spain. The specifics of the injury itself have not been revealed to the public; it is unknown whether it is a fracture or a spur. Although Brooks’ absence is detrimental to the team, he is expected to return before November.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary to fix a foot ailment. To learn more, contact Dr. Clifton Barretta from Associated Foot Health Center. Dr. Barretta can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

When Is Surgery Necessary?

Foot and ankle surgery is generally reserved for cases in which less invasive, conservative procedures have failed to help with the problem. Some of the cases in which surgery may be necessary are:

  • Removing foot deformities like bone spurs and bunions
  • Severe arthritis that has caused bone issues
  • Cosmetic reconstruction

What Types of Surgery Are There?

The type of surgery you receive will depend on the nature of the problem you have. Some of the possible surgeries include:

  • Bunionectomy for painful bunions
  • Surgical fusion for realignment of bones
  • Neuropathy decompression surgery to treat nerve damage

Benefits of Surgery

Although surgery is usually a last resort, it can provide more complete pain relief compared to non-surgical methods and may allow you to finally resume full activity.

Surgical techniques have also become increasingly sophisticated. Techniques like endoscopic surgery allow for smaller incisions and faster recovery times.

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 foot surgery.

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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

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