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TORONTO CHIROPODIST, D.Ch., B.Sc., PODIATRIC MEDICINE

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If your goal is to run a marathon, head to the great outdoors. If you're after a light jog, switch on your running machine, says Steve Manning, podiatrist and Queensland president of Sports Medicine Australia. "Running on a treadmill is fine for those with knee or hip problems, or if you're overweight, as there's little weight-bearing on your joints," Manning says. "Running on the pavement uses a different type of muscle contraction, which a running machine can't emulate." As a running-machine surface is smooth, there is no change in your step or pace, which helps to increase your fitness levels.
 
Steve Manning
 
 
"Although cushioned running machines may help reduce the shock impact on knees and joints, continual running at the same pace will increase your risk of osteoporosis," Manning says. Whichever option you choose, keep running. Scientists in California found that those who ran for 40 minutes a day lived longer and were healthier, both physically and mentally, than those who did no running at all.
 
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
 
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotics Clinic.

 

While many people have heard of athlete’s foot, jock itch, or ringworm, not everyone may be familiar with tinea. Essentially, it’s all one and the same, said Dr. John Ciccone, a podiatrist at Pacific Beach Podiatry. The condition is contagious, appears in areas of the body such as the feet because they may often be wet or damp and, he said, “It won’t go away on its own.”
 
Dr. John Ciccone
 
 
Ciccone said that an estimated 15 to 20 percent of the population will develop tinea at some point. The most common areas for it to develop are the bottom of the feet because that’s where sweat glands are located. He said the feet sweat a quart of water per day, and those who are busy and on their feet all day at work — bartenders, for instance — may be prone to tinea as they stand for long hours in damp footwear.
 
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
 
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotic Clinics.

 

“The most important thing for parents to realize,” says Kevin Bryant, DPM, of Progressive Podiatry, LLC, “is that they need to understand what is normal in order to be able to recognize what is abnormal.” Whether Baby starts walking at 9 or 14 months, parents will want to keep an eye on his gait as well as his feet. “Toe walking is very, very common in kids,” says Dr. Bryant, adding that kids who walk up on their toes typically stop around age 4 or 5. Some kids will walk on their tip-toes because of a neurological or physiological condition — for example, the muscles on their backs of their legs may actually contract the tendons in their ankles, forcing them to walk on their toes. Bryant says that most kids just think that’s the way to walk, and a little retraining with physical therapy resolves the issue.
 
Dr. Kevin Bryant
 
 
Flat feet is another common problem, according to Bryant, and usually requires a visit to a specialist if your little one is in pain, or can’t seem to keep up with other kids while walking or running around. An orthotic insert, which today can be customized from advanced, lightweight materials, can help.
 
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
 
Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotic Clinics.

 

Your preschooler follows the older kids excitedly as they build their tree fort—until she steps on a nail and shrieks. The nail doesn't look rusty. What should you do? "Even a nail that looks clean can carry tetanus," says Dr. Alan MacGill, a podiatrist in Boynton Beach, FL. Most kids have had vaccines and boosters, but a 3-year-old is almost due for the next one, "so get to urgent care or the ER to get it addressed."

Dr. Alan McGill

Two other concerns: A puncture brings in dirt, debris, perspiration, and maybe sock and shoe fragments that can cause infection. "Urgent care or the ER can flush out the wound better than you can, and they'll probably give her antibiotics as a precaution," MacGill says. Also, "the foot is a complex structure—with tendons, ligaments, bones, nerves—and it's hard to see how far the damage goes," he says. Better to have an expert assess it.

Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.

Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotic Clinics.

“The number one reason I get calls is because (a patient’s toe) hurts,” said John-Paul Guillot, a doctor of podiatric medicine at Toe-Tal Family Footcare in Carlsbad. “When someone’s foot’s in pain, their quality of life is affected. So they’ll come in. But if you see something, and you’re not sure; see a podiatrist. Sooner is always better than later.”

Dr. John-Paul Guillot

Also, if you happen to see a spot on your nail, pay attention to if it moves along as your nail grows. “The typical nail growth cycle is about nine to 10 weeks,” Guillot said. “If there’s a spot on the nail and it hasn’t moved during that time that means it’s underneath the nail.”

Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.

Brought to you by Doctor John A. Hardy, owner of Toronto's foot clinic, Academy Foot and Orthotic Clinics.

 





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416-465-8737

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