Posts for category: foot pain
Back to School is upon us yet again. The summer sun is still beating down on us, but the gorgeous change of seasons is just around the corner. With back to school, for many families, that also means it is time for Fall Sports to begin. Football, Soccer, Field Hockey, Cross Country, Cheerleading, Volleyball, Tennis, and Golf, to name a few, are all beginning! Any sport(s) your child participates in will require a mixture of training, learning new skills, teamwork, and endurance to get the WIN! Along with that winning touchdown or goal, each sport also carries a risk of injury.
Every year, some 1.35 million children suffer injuries while playing sports (Orthopedic Institute of PA). Out of all of those injuries, the most common are sprains, strains, fractures and shin splints. Below you'll see some of the most likely injuries, along with a few things to keep in mind if you are dealing with any of these injuries.
A sprain is defined as "a tear or stretching of your ligaments, which tether bones together at a joint".
Most sprains happen when you twist a part of your body in an awkward, not natural way. Maybe you land on the side of your ankle, instead of on your foot, after you kicked the ball? There are many possible scenariors that can lead to a sprain. A common and very serious sprain that you may have heard about on TV, watching College Sports or maybe the NFL, is when an athlete tears their ACL. An ACL injury could require surgery and many months of rehabilitation.
However in most cases, a sprain can be treated by the following:
- Ice & Compression
- Use of a Splint
- Taking Anti-Inflammatories
Muscle strains typically come from sudden movements in a way your body isn't used to. Sometimes strains also happen because the body is overyused too. Strains are different from Sprains because a strain is an injury to muscle, where a sprain is an injury to ligaments that connect bone.Strains most commonly occur in the legs and the back, but also occur in the neck, elbows, arms, calf muscle and gluteus.
The best, most recommended treatment for a strain is rest, ice and elevation as well. In severe cases surgery might be necessary, but most will recover within a few days.
A runner's WORST nightmare!
Shin splints often develop from participating in sports that require high intensity running such as soccer, field hockey, and cross country. The repetitive running can damage the tissues holding your muscles to your bones. Shin splints typically develop early in the season when your body is not used to the intensity and/or frequency of activity yet. Running on hard surfaces like concrete can also cause shin splints; along with quickly increasing the distance you run before your body is prepared or conditioned to do so.
In most cases, shin splints will clear up with rest and icing. But in some cases further treatment is needed. It is important to see a doctor if the pain persists and does not improve with a few days rest.
How Can You Prevent These Injuries?
Be proactive! Get a sports physical and talk to your doctor about your ability to participate in physical activity.
- Stretch before participating in practice, a game, or a run
- Don't over-do-it! If you feel pain or abnormal soreness, don't push yourself. Rest!
- Drink plenty of water and keep your body hydrated
Orthotics are devices added to footwear that help alleviate pain, improve walking gait, reduce the risk of ulcers, and promote stability. Orthotics provide support to the heels, arches, and balls of the feet. They come in a variety of materials and lengths, depending on the manufacturer. Pricing ranges greatly with orthotics. Over-the -counter inserts are less costly than a prescribed pair of custom orthotics but, wear out much faster. So, which is better for you? Read more below on the comparisons of the two.
This type of orthotic can easily be found at any drugstore or shoe retailer. The orthotics are made for the “general” population assuming all feet are the same. They typically last three to nine months depending on the wearer and the quality of the shoe in which they are being used. They can be helpful with alleviating acute foot or ankle problems. OTC orthotics typically provide extra cushion with a foam or gel material. While they are cost-effective up front, one must consider the constant cost of replacing them every few months.
Custom Prescription Orthotics
Custom orthotics are prescribed by a podiatrist, following a thorough examination. Custom orthotics provide comfort while also correcting gait mechanics. State-of-the-art digital technology is used to scan each foot separately. The scan is then sent to a laboratory where an orthotic is created based on the topography of each foot. Since these are specially made, the material used for them is much more durable and typically will last five to ten years. While the cost up front is greater than an OTC insert, in the long run, the custom orthotics are more cost-effective.
Almost everyone can benefit from a good orthotic. Whether the issue be acute (short term) or chronic (long lasting), orthotics help correct walking mechanics while providing support. Orthotics are especially helpful for those suffering from plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, diabetic ulcers, and general foot and heel pain. If you have more questions regarding orthotics and inserts, contact our office today!