Answers to Questions About Getting Foot and Ankle Care
Want fast answers to your top questions about foot and ankle problems? Farmingdale podiatrist Dr. Gasparini gives you the answers you need to get back on your feet again.
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How might a heel lift help with foot and heel pain?
Just to clarify, we are referring here to an insert placed within a shoe to raise the heel. We are not talking about heel lift exercises, although those certainly have their uses, too.
The use of heel lifts can be especially helpful for patients whose heel pain is the result of excess strain caused by tight calf muscles or Achilles tendons. The lower the heel, the more these tissues may be forced to stretch and strain against the heel. This, in turn, can contribute to painful problems such as plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis.
Heel lifts help accommodate this condition by lessening stress caused by the pull of the Achilles and calves. When used individually or in conjunction with additional conditioning measures such as stretching, heel lifts can significantly lessen discomfort and reduce injury risk.If you are seeking help for persistent heel or foot pain, please don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with us.
How does Stopain relief gel work? What can it be used for?
Stopain gel is a widely trusted form of pain relief that is often used in clinical and athletic capacities. This product is available for purchase at our practice.
Stopain has menthol as an active ingredient, which causes an intense cooling sensation against the skin when applied. This sensation activates a “cold” response in local nerves, which causes the body to respond by blocking pain signals, reducing inflammation, and increasing circulation to the area. Compared to Biofreeze, another popular menthol-based pain-relieving gel, Stopain has a much stronger concentration of menthol and can often provide more dramatic pain relief for a longer period of time.
Typical usage of Stopain requires rubbing a thin layer of the gel over a painful area several times per day – with a recommended maximum of four times. The effects of the gel penetrate deep into the tissue without having to massage it in (but you’re more than welcome to do so if you wish).
We might recommend Stopain for conditions including Achilles tendinitis, bursitis, neuromas, gout, and other causes of foot and ankle pain. Sometimes we may recommend it as part of a full plan that includes other methods of treatment. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about this product.
Can prefabricated shoe inserts help with Achilles tendon pain?
Prefabricated inserts have considerable potential to address certain causes of Achilles tendinopathy, and in some cases may provide comparable results to custom orthotics.
However, that does not mean simply going to the nearest store and picking your best guess off the shelf will have a good chance of providing the results you need! Even premade orthotic inserts must be chosen wisely to accommodate your specific mechanical needs. Not only that, but certain adjustments can make an enormous difference in their overall effectiveness.
That is why our practice carries a wide range of high-quality, medical-grade inserts that we may recommend for patients with certain treatment needs. We trust these inserts to provide optimal results compared to general store-bought brands, plus you have our expertise at hand when it comes to obtaining the best options for your lifestyle, activity level, and other factors.
And if your prefabricated inserts need to be adjusted or augmented to better help your Achilles-related heel pain (such as by adding a heel lift to further reduce strain), we are able to do so with the devices we carry. You almost never receive such options at the local pharmacy!
Do overlapping toes need surgery?
Overlapping toes, also known as crossover toes, do not always require surgery to be managed effectively—in fact, as with many other foot and ankle conditions, we consider surgery only as a last resort, when conservative options have been insufficient.
The bad news is that, because the condition is progressive, once toes have started to drift out of alignment, they usually don’t go back to “normal” without surgical intervention. However, if you seek treatment at the first sign of trouble, when symptoms are relatively mild and the joints are still flexible, mild measures may be more than sufficient to stop progression, maintain your mobility, and relieve pain. Such treatments may include modified footwear, toe stretches and exercise, tools such as orthotics or toes spaces, or other techniques.
If you notice drifting toes, don’t wait for the pain to become unbearable. Contact Dr. Mark Gasparini in Massapequa, NY today. You can fill out our online contact form or give our office a call at 516-804-9038 for an appointment.
Why does the middle of my foot hurt?
Between the fore- and hindfoot areas of the foot is the Lisfranc joint complex. If you are experiencing midfoot pain, it is quite likely that you have developed a Lisfranc complex injury. This joint complex consists of bones and ligaments, and most of these injuries happen when the midfoot is excessively twisted. They can be fairly common in sporting activities like soccer or football, especially when an athlete stumbles over the top of a foot that is in a downward flexed position.
There are three types of Lisfranc injuries—sprains, fractures, and dislocations. All three have similar symptoms that include swelling, pain, bruising, and inability to bear weight. In some cases, there may be an abnormal widening of the injured foot.
If you or a loved one is experiencing any of those symptoms, come see us at Foot Specialists of Long Island so that we can provide an accurate diagnosis and determine the best treatment. For more information, contact our Nassau County Podiatrist office by calling (516) 804-9038. You can also schedule an appointment with us directly through our online form today.
What can I do to avoid smelly feet?
When you want to prevent foot odor, your first line of defense is daily hygienic practices. Wash your feet daily with soap and water. After bathing or showering, be sure to dry your feet completely before putting on socks or shoes. Bacteria that can lead to funky odors thrive in damp environments, so keeping your feet dry is a major step in avoiding smelly feet. Wearing socks that wick away moisture and footwear made from breathable materials will also help.
If you are finding that daily cleanings and focused effort on dry feet are not enough, you may need to soak your feet in saltwater, vinegar, or tea to help reduce the amount of bacteria residing on your lower limbs.
These tips should help you avoid foul foot odor, but there are times when professional care is needed. If this is the case, find the treatment you need here at our Nassau County, NY foot doctor office. Foot Specialists of Long Island is committed to your foot and ankle health, including how your lower limbs smell. For more information, or to schedule an appointment with us, either use our online form or simply give us a call at (516) 804-9038.
Would exercise help with varicose veins?
The answer is a resounding “yes!” When it comes to foot, ankle, and lower limb conditions and issues, exercise is often a great place to start looking for treatment options. Obviously, it isn’t always the best option (and in some cases should not be used), but exercise definitely helps with varicose veins. That said, it is important to understand which exercises improve varicose veins.
Exercises to use include walking, swimming, cycling, and even elliptical machines. These are all low-impact, yet still promote healthy circulation. Ones to avoid (or at least limit) include running and weightlifting. Our office can help you create a workout plan that will work best for you.
Exercise is a remarkable place to start addressing varicose veins (and improving your overall health and wellbeing), but there are other treatment options that might be needed. When you want professional care for a varicose vein in Nassau County, NY, contact Foot Specialists of Long Island. We can take a look at your specific situation and find an effective treatment for you, so give us a call at (516) 804-9038 for more information or to schedule your appointment.
Should my baby wear shoes?
As babies develop and start walking, parents have many questions. There can be concern about intoeing or lack of foot arches, but another common inquiry is whether or not babies need to wear shoes. There are varying opinions on the matter, but it does not seem to be necessary for your son or daughter to use footwear, even when he or she starts walking (as long as the walking surfaces are safe).
Some individuals are curious about the matter because there can be the impression that shoes will help contribute to stronger ankles. There is not actually any medical evidence that supports this conclusion, and it may very well be disinformation that comes from the shoe industry itself. Perhaps the best way to think of this is that humans developed strong ankles and bodies long before shoes became commonplace.
When you have foot care needs or questions regarding foot issues for babies, toddlers, and young children, Foot Specialists of Long Island is here for you. You can contact our Long Island, NY podiatrist office by calling (516) 804-9038 and our staff will be glad to assist you, or you can simply schedule your appointment with us online today.
What shoes can I wear with orthotics?
It is rather common to wonder how orthotics work with shoes. These devices are intended to be used as inserts into footwear to help correct a medical condition. The orthotic devices we provide in our Nassau County podiatrist office are customized for you and will be able to work in most styles of footwear you already own.
While they can be used in a wide array of shoes, orthotics work particularly well with athletic shoes, work boots, and shoes worn in the office. Most casual footwear models will also work well with your orthotics. They work best in shoes that have a removable insole.
There is a possibility that a pair of custom orthotics will be beneficial for a painful foot or ankle condition that is ailing you or someone you care about. Come see our doctors at Foot Specialists of Long Island and we can develop a treatment plan that works for you. If this includes a pair of orthotics, we will discuss how they work with your footwear.
Call our Long Island, NY foot doctor office for more information at (516) 804-9038 or fill out our online form to request an appointment.
How long should I have physical therapy after surgery?
It is difficult to provide an assessment with regard to how long you may need physical therapy after surgery without an actual evaluation of your issues and situation, but there are some guidelines that might help. For example, six to eight weeks of physical therapy following a bunion surgery may be recommended. With other procedures, we may recommend four to six weeks of physical conditioning. Still others may take even longer than eight weeks.
What we can say definitively is that we will always take the time to explain the surgical procedure to you first, including what you can expect from recovery. During this discussion, we can estimate more accurately your specific need for therapy.
Our patients know that the preferred course of treatment is conservative, but some cases benefit from surgical intervention. Fortunately, our podiatrist—Mark Gasparini, D.P.M.—has the experience and skill you want from a foot surgeon. Once the procedure is completed, we will provide instructions as part of your postsurgical care, and this might include physical therapy. Simply follow doctor instructions for optimal healing.
To discuss possible surgery, call our Long Island, NY podiatrist office at (516) 804-9038 or schedule your appointment with us online today.