DMFA Blog

Posts for tag: foot doctor


After a long winter with too many visits from the Polar Vortex, summer is finally here. And with Memorial Day right around the corner, that means many people's plans call for summer vacations.

No matter where you're traveling this summer – a weekend getaway to Six Flags Great America or Wisconsin Dells, a day trip to Navy Pier, a Cubs or Sox game, the Taste of Chicago or an out-of-town getaway -- we want to be part of your summer fun.

Here at DM Foot and Ankle Associates, we're sponsoring a photo contest on Facebook -- Get Away With DMFA!

In May, June and July, we're inviting patients and community members to pick up a free, flip-flop stress reliever from our Lemont office at 14236 McCarthy Road. Take the flip-flop with you on vacation or as you partake in summer fun in and around the Chicago area, and post your photos on our Facebook page.

Winners in each category will win a $50 American Express gift card!

Here are all the details:

1. From May through July, pick up a free, flip-flop stress reliever with the DMFA logo at our front desk.

2. Take the flip-flop with you as you do something fun this summer – whether it’s a visit to the beach, attending a festival or concert, a neighborhood picnic or barbecue or traveling out of town.

3. Snap a photo with the flip flop during your travels. Keep in mind we’re giving away prizes in three categories: 1. Best Selfie 2. Most Unique 3. Best photo bomb.

4. Send us your flip-flop photos on Facebook.

5. To do so, link to our Facebook page or simply search for "DM Foot and Ankle Associates." Like us and hit the “message” button under the right hand side of our cover photo. In the white box that pops up, click “Add files.” Then simply choose the photo from your desktop to upload.

6. Don’t forget to write a short caption letting us know where the photo was taken and what you were doing. Then hit “Send."

7. We’ll post your photos on our Facebook page. A member of our staff will notify winners via Facebook messaging in August

For more information about the contest and to see examples of flip-flop photos, log on to the Get Away With DMFA tab on our website

Have a great time photographing the flip-flop during your adventures!

By Diana Emini

By Diana Emini
February 10, 2014
Category: sports injuries

Sports fans around the world have likely been watching the Winter Olympics unfold in Sochi, Russia. And as the games progress, there's sure to be plenty of action – from skiing to bobsledding to hockey.

But perhaps one of the most popular events is figure skating. Although many fans were looking forward to seeing reigning men's gold medalist (and Naperville native) Evan Lysacek compete again, he announced in December that he isn't taking part in the games because of a hip injury.

Although it's full of grace and beauty, Lysacek's situation shows skating can be hard on the body, including the feet and ankles. Whether you're gliding across the ice for fun at a local rink or are serious about the sport, here are just a few ways it can harm the feet:

  • Bunions. This is an abnormal, bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of the big toe. Basically, the bones change position and cause the big toe joint to dislocate. Over time, the bony bump can get bigger and crowd the smaller toes. According to usfigureskating.org, bunions are noted in up to 57 percent of skaters.

  • Hammertoes: This is a buckling of the toe joints. This can give a toe a curled or claw-like appearance and also come with pain or swelling. U.S. Figure Skating's website says this is found in 18 percent of skaters – the toes curl to try holding the shoe or skate on the foot.

  • Plantar fasciitis: The band stretching from the heel bone to the toes, the plantar fascia, supports the arch and absorbs shock. When it get irritated, it can create stabbing or burning pain under the heel.

    Whether you skate competitively or just for fun. Here are a few tips to avoid injury:

  • Always warm up to stretch so your muscles aren't stiff on the ice

  • Make sure to have proper instruction and training before you try anything on skates

  • Wear proper clothing and don't forget to tie back long hair. Avoid jewelry and baggy clothes.

  • Don't skate if you're already suffering from an injury.

  • Seek medical care if you suffer from pain or an injury.

We hope you stay safe on the ice this winter, but if you suffer from an injury, call us at DM Foot and Ankle. Dr. Michelle Kim and I can see urgent cases same-day in our Lemont office. Stay safe and enjoy cheering for Team USA during the Olympics!

By Diana Emini

 

In the middle of winter, your shoes of choice right now may be snowboots and Uggs. But with Groundhog Day approaching on Feb. 2nd, we hope it won't be long before you can get outdoors and enjoy warm-weather spots such as Navy Pier, the Brookfield Zoo or Lemont's Centennial Pool.

 

As the seasons change, so do many people's footwear. Unfortunately, at DM Foot and Ankle Associates, Dr. Diani Emini and I see many patients with foot pain or injuries from wearing the wrong shoes.

 

Here's a look at a few popular shoe types, and some of the ways they can harm the feet.

 

Ballet flats

Problem: These simple slip-ons may feel comfy, but they don't support the feet and can lead to pain.  They lack arch support and typically have very little insole padding.  People think because it is not a heeled shoe, it is better for them, but this super flat shoe is sometimes just as bad.

Solution: We have dressy fit orthotics that can work in the littlest of shoes.

 

Stilettos

Problem:  These tall, trendy shoes are stylish. But the price of looking good has its downside:  the narrow forefoot cramps those toes and can cause worsening of bunions and hammertoes.  The skinny heel does not offer much in balance and throws all the weight of the foot on the ball – causing neuromas and other joint inflammatory conditions. 

Solution:  A chunky heel or wedged heel are better optionsbecause they have more surface area and re-distribute the weight more evenly. Don't be fooled – these shoes still place stress on the ball of the foot, but the risk or tripping or spraining an ankle may be reduced.  Save the stilettos for those special occasions only.

 

Worn-out shoes

Problem:  Those pair of running shoes you’ve had for years or the old Chuck Taylors you keep wearing can make existing foot problems worse.  Just because they look OK on the outside doesn't mean the inner lining and overall structure of the shoe are still in good condition.  Most likely, they are worn down and are not offering you any shock absorption or support.

Solution: Thow away that too-old pair of shoes. If you need advice on finding a new pair, simply ask one of us at DM Foot and Ankle, or visit a store that specializes in running or walking shoes.

 

Flip flops

Problem:  These easy to slip-on sandals lack support, and your feet have to work extra hard to keep them on.  Over time, these can cause foot pain or tendon strain.

Solution: Choose a pair of sporty, fitted sandals that have a built-in arch support with a rigid sole.  While you shouldn’t go walking long distances in these, they are a great alternative to those rubber thongs that so many people love.

 

By Michelle Kim

Thanks to pre-and post-holiday sales, you may have spent time shopping in recent weeks. In doing so, you've probably noticed there's a wide selection of shearling boots such as Uggs.

 

While these boots are good at keeping feet warm even during harsh Chicago winters, they may not be the best for the health of your feet.

 

While they're fashionable – they became a staple in many women's closets after celebrities such as Cameron Diaz, Katie Holmes and Gwenyth Paltrow began wearing them in the mid-2000s – one issue is that they don't provide much support.

 

In fact, the fur-lined footwear even made news a few years ago when they and their knockoffs were criticized by health experts in the United Kingdom. Experts even told the British newspaper the Mirror that Uggs were "harming the feet of a generation of young women.”

 

"With each step, the force falls towards the inside of the foot and the feet splay,” the head of the British College of Osteopathic Medicine told the paper. “This flattens the arch and makes it drop... The result can be significant problems with the foot, the ankle, and, ultimately, the hip.” 

Ugg Australia has said their boots are meant for comfort, not performance, according to the New York Daily News. As a result. these boots can create problems if they're worn for long periods of time – or worn without socks. The Daily News reported the boots don't offer “control, cushion or support” that's needed for long bouts of standing or walking. Meanwhile, most people tend to walk on unforgiving surfaces such as concrete, asphalt or industrial flooding.

One solution to this is visiting a podiatrist to get an insert to slip inside your Ugg or shearling boot to keep your feet in the correct position. My colleague, Dr. Diana Emini, and I can help fit you with an insert for your Ugg at DM Foot and Ankle.

We also offer products to help disinfect your Uggs to help kill bacteria and fungus. Also, be sure to wear cotton or wicking socks – going barefoot could lead to a fungal infection.

If you're having foot pain from these types of boots, don't hesitate to call our Lemont office. Winter has only just begun, but these steps can keep your feet warm – and safe – during the cold weather.

By Michelle Kim 

It's hard to believe, but the holidays are here. People are putting up decorations, planning Hanukkah and Christmas gatherings and making plans for New Year's Eve.

But come Jan. 1, many people across Lemont and beyond are sure to make resolutions to get into shape.

In fact, the American College of Sports Medicine recently released it's list of exercise trends expected to be big in 2014.

The list includes:

High-Intensity Interval Training: Also known as HIIT, this type of exercise took the No. 1 spot. It involves short bursts of activity followed by a short period of rest or recovery. These exercise programs usually take 30 minutes or less.

Fitness Programs for Older Adults. As baby boomers age toward retirement, many members of this generation will have more discretionary money. As a result, many fitness professionals are creating programs to keep older adults healthy and active.

Group Personal Training. Thanks to the tough economy – which left many gym-goes with less money to spend on pricey training -- many trainers began offering options where they work with two or three clients at once.

Boot Camp.  Patterned after military-style training, Boot Camp includes cardiovascular, strength, endurance and flexibility drills led by an instructor.

Yoga. It's been around forever, but today, there's practically a yoga studio on every corner. That could be because yoga comes in a variety of forms: Power Yoga, Yogalates, and Bikram Yoga (better known as “hot yoga.”)

No matter what exercise you choose – and as podiatrists at DM Foot and Ankle Associates, Dr. Diana Emini and I encourage lifestyles that include fitness – it's important to have proper footwear.  

Athletic shoes must be comfortable, well-constructed and appropriate for a given activity. Shoes that fit well should help avoid blisters and skin irritations.

Also, keep in mind that different shoes serve different purposes.

Running shoes are built to take impact, but tennis shoes allow for sudden stops and turns. Meanwhile, cross training shoes are fine for PE classes or activities at the gym such as on stair-climbing machines and weight-lifting.

We recommend patients replace athletic shoes after one year – even if they aren't worn out. The American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine advises replacing running or walking shoes after 300 to 500 miles, and getting new aerobic, basketball and tennis shoes after 45 to 60 hours of wear.

By following some of these guidelines, we hope you will stay on your feet and reach your fitness goals for 2014!


By Michelle Kim