Dr. Berg's Foot Facts
By Dr. Rion Berg
June 15, 2018
Category: Neuroma
Tags: Morton's Neuroma  

If you're feeling a sharp pain between your third and fourth toes you may have developed a foot condition called Morton's Neuroma. What's that you wonder? It's a problem caused by any irritation which leads to thickening of tissue surrounding the nerve that travels to the third and fourth toes.

Recent research at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh found that Morton's neuroma has climbed by 115% percent (more than doubled) in women between 40 and 69 in the past 10 years. Women who wore high heels greater than 2 inches were at greater risk.

Although it's true that high heels are often the culprit--neuromas develop four times as often in women than men--avoiding heels aren't the only way to prevent this condition. Men and woman who wear shoes that are too tight or have a narrow toe box or participate in sports activities such as running are also more likely to develop this painful condition.

But no need to worry. At the Foot and Ankle Center of Lake City we've helped men and women resolve this problem hundreds of times.

Of course as a Seattle podiatrist my first recommendation will be to limit your high heel use. But even if you don't refrain there are several other solutions to this problem.

  • Ice - to initially relieve the pain and swelling

  • Padding - this relieves the pressure on that stubborn nerve that is causing all your pain
     
  • Orthotics - shoe inserts either over the counter or customized for your feet, if padding is not sufficient.

  • Roomier shoes - if your shoes are squeezing your tootsies, purchase shoes with a wider toe box. Be sure you get the proper fit for running shoes as well dress shoes.

  • Injections with alcohol - guided alcohol injections can work well to shrink the neuroma.

Related articles

Alcohol Injections Nip Neuroma Pain in the Bud
Painful Foot Conditions In Women Runners
When Neuromas Get in the Way of Summer Fun

Call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

 

 

By Dr. Rion Berg
June 01, 2018
Category: Bunions

Summertime is walking and hiking time. But for people with bunions the thought of stepping out to do anything active can be fraught with worry. If you're one of those people you already know how painful it can be to do any activity that means putting pressure on your bunions.

How can you keep your bunions from ruining your summer?

Wear Sturdy, Supportive Sandals

While they won't solve your bunion problems, wearing a sturdy, supportive sandal with adjustable straps can help make your summer more enjoyable.

Why sturdy and supportive? If you're like many people with bunions, you probably have a flatter arch or no arch. Supporting the arch is important to prevent your bunions from getting worse. A sturdy sandal is one that can't easily be bent in half or twist. Sandals like these can be used to walk and sometimes hike longer distances while preventing ankle sprains and foot pain.

Sandals that fit this description are the Ecco Yucatan sandal, Atika Maya, or Chaco Z2 Classic. There are many other sandals that can work just as well. Learn to test any sandal before you buy it, by watching my video "How to Test Any Shoe for Stability".

Wear Sandals That Can Take An Orthotic

Many of my patients get pain relief once their foot mechanics are corrected with a custom orthotic. While orthotics fit into most tennis shoes not that many can fit into sandals. Here are some sturdy, supportive sandals with removable foot beds.

Avoid High Heels

Wearing high heels no matter how sturdy will cause more bunion pain and cause your bunions to get worse. If you can't avoid a high heel, wear one with a roomier toe box.

If you're experiencing bunion pain and want to enjoy your summer call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

You want to get out and enjoy our wonderful weather, but it feels like your walking on hot coals or pebbles. Ouch!

As a Seattle podiatrist, I don’t think you’re from a weird cult or strange. The pain and pebble-like feeling means you probably have a condition called metatarsalgia (pronounced (met-uh-tahr-SAL-juh). I know it sounds bad, but don’t worry it’s a common foot problem.

Metatarsalgia is an inflammation of the ball of the foot and many things can cause it. In addition to the pain and the pebble in your shoe feeling you may also experience tingling or numbness in your toes and a sharp, shooting pain particularly when your feet are flexed.

You’ll likely notice it more when you’re active and less so when you lay off your feet.

What Causes it?

  • Having a high-arched foot or a very long bone in your toe.

  • Running or another high impact sport particularly if you haven’t done it in a long time.

  • Foot conditions such as bunions, hammertoes, stress fractures, and Morton’s Neuroma can make it more likely to happen.

  • Women - shoes that are too pointy, too high, or with a tight toe box.

  • Men – rigid-soled work boots

  • Wearing flip flops too often (no shock absorption)

  • Working on hard surfaces – cashiers, construction workers, road workers

What Can Be Done To Treat It?

Depending on the cause there are a variety of ways to treat it.

  1. Make sure your shoes are supportive and not worn out. Check out my video “How to Test Any Shoe for Stability” before you shop.

  2. Wear the right shoe for the activity you engage in. eg. Court shoes for tennis, running shoes for running

  3. Rest – as hard as this may be to stop your favorite activity, you’re going to need to sit out the next family hike to heal

  4. Apply ice several times a day

  5. At the podiatrist’s office – depending on what I find when I examine you I may recommend a metatarsal pad to take the stress off the ball of your foot. In addition, if you have poor biomechanics I’ll likely recommend either an over-the-counter shoe insert or I’ll make you a pair of custom orthotics.

If you have ball of foot pain, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

Your free foot book "No More Foot Pain" is waiting to be sent to your home.

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

By now you've probably heard that the Mariners newly installed second basement Dee Gordon has been sidelined due to a broken toe. Seattle Mariners manager Scott Servais said Gordon was trying to play through it. Gordon fractured his own toe when he fouled a ball off of it.

Now it may be acceptable and even preferable for a major league player to keep on playing with a broken appendage. But keep in mind they're making millions of dollars a year to keep on keeping on.

As we enter the Memorial Day weekend if you've run too many miles and are feeling the sting of plantar fasciitis or you've run into your dresser in the middle of the night and now your toe is killing you, it's time to rest up and call me on Tuesday.

If you can't give up your plans, here are a couple of temporary fixes that could help. For a broken toe or a toe you think may be broken you can try to buddy tape it to the toe next to it. If you can get your hands on a walking boot that would be even better to ensure your toe is stabilized until you can make an appointment.

For plantar fasciitis you can try to tape your heel or have someone help you with it. Here is a demonstration of how to do it. Taping can help take the sting out of heel pain when you step down because the tape prevents your plantar fascia from stretching and re-injuring your heel.

Whether you decide to sit this one out or try my suggestions, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

 

You're a runner and you've had to deal with foot and knee injuries. A new study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine provides more evidence running lightly can reduce injuries.

The effects of running lightly have been studied before. In 2016, I wrote a blog about a study of light footed women runners done at Harvard. In this study women who ran more lightly never got injured.

The new study measured the landing impact of 320 novice runners.Half the runners were told to run softer while the other half were not. After 12 months, those who learned to run softer had a 62 percent decrease in injuries than the runners who made no change.

What Does It Take to Run Softer

  • Think about running more softly and quietly when you're running; another study showed that runners who were told to run softly and quietly could reduce their foot impact.
  • Land on your mid or forefoot instead of the heel (Video on low impact running).
  • Use quick foot strikes and a shorter stride.
  • Try Chi Running which takes some of its principles from Tai Chi. You can also purchase the app of the same name.

In addition to running softer there are many other things you can do to reduce your chances of developing foot injuries such as Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis.

  • Increase your mileage slowly. Most experts recommend only a 10% increase each week.

  • Always stretch before you run. We recommend Dynamic Warm-ups for the best results. Tight calf muscles often play a huge role in developing heel pain and Achilles tendonitis. Here is what we recommend for patients who already have these conditions with tight calf muscles.

  • Make sure your shoes fit properly and aren't worn out.

  • Running can affect your hips, back, knees, and feet. Don't ignore pain. It's a signal that something is amiss.

More information on pain free running:
8 Hacks To Prevent Running Injuries this Summer
4 Lacing Hacks To Reduce Painful Running Problems
5 Tips to Keep Runner's Feet Healthy and Strong

If you're a runner experiencing hip, back, knee or foot pain, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+





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