Dr. Berg's Foot Facts

Posts for tag: Sever's disease

Whether you're a weekend warrior or the parent of a kid just getting back to into sports at school, you should be aware of the most common sports related foot and ankle injuries.

Sever's disease, ingrown toenails, and turf toe are common in young athletes who play soccer.

Stress fractures and Morton's neuroma are frequently found in women athletes.

Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis can occur with a rapid increase in sports participation particularly in athletes who have flat feet and tight calf muscles.

Sprained ankles and an Achilles tendon rupture can affect athletes involved in soccer, football, volleyball and other sports where rapid changes in direction are common.

To prevent these foot and ankle problems from occuring, be sure to use these 7 hacks.

Keep your body in shape throughout the year
Prevention of foot and ankle injuries starts by participating in a variety of sports throughout the year. Weightlifting at the gym, yoga, and an aerobic activity such as swimming, cycling or light jogging will keep your body strong and flexible.

Proper footwear
Proper shoes are your best defense against foot and ankle injuries. These days there are specific shoes made for every type of sport. For example basketball shoes are designed to protect ankles that need to twist, running shoes protect feet that repetitively hit the ground, and soccer cleats prevent athletes from slipping.

Although it may be more cost effective to pass shoes down from older to younger children, it's a bad idea for sports shoes in particular. One of the main purposes of athletic shoes is to provide the best support possible for the type of sport you play. Shoes that are worn out or worn down differently from a previous owner can be detrimental to the next person who uses them.

It's also important to pay attention to your foot type when picking out a pair of sports shoes. A good sporting goods store, such as Super Jock N Jill for runners, will take this into account when suggesting a shoe. You should also test the shoes before you purchasing them by watching my video "How to Test Any Shoe for Stability" to ensure they'll provide proper support.

Best warm-up and cool down exercises
Warm up your legs by jogging in place for at least 10 minutes before you stretch. Engage in a variety of stretches. Try using Dynamic Warm-up and Cool Down exercises to get yourself ready to play sports. While proper warm-up and cool down exercises are important for all athletes, they are essential for athletes over 50 and for those who may participate in the occasional pick-up basketball or softball game.

Increase training gradually to prevent overuse injuries
Weekend warriors are often at risk for overuse injuries caused by occasional play. However, anyone can develop an overuse injury if they increase their sports activities by more than 10% per week. Our bodies aren't able to adapt to rapid increases in running and other sports activities and this is particularly true as we age.

Check for unsafe field surfaces/wet slippery fields
Most sports-related ankle sprains are caused by jumping and running on uneven surfaces. Check playing fields for dips, holes, stray objects, and too much water.  Alert coaching officials to any irregularities.

Get a pre-season physical exam
Kids and adults alike should go to their podiatrist or primary care physician for a pre-season physical. Ask your provider to check out any old injuries before engaging in sports.

Listen to your body
Our bodies are designed to feel pain so that we avoid more severe injuries. Keep this in mind and teach your kids to recognize when pain is not normal. Some muscle pain is common with new activity but pain that lasts over many days is a warning to stop and rest.

If you or your child needs a pre-season check-up or are experiencing any foot and ankle 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.

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By Dr. Rion Berg
September 04, 2015
Category: sports injuries

School is just around the corner and so is the start-up of kid's sports. But for some kids, last year's sports never ended. They play year round, with their parents hoping they get a college scholarship or even bigger dreams like their kid going pro. Today on NPR, Anders Kelto did a story about kids whose parents push them way too hard in sports. Not surprisingly it turns out that kids end up with anxiety and depression as a result.

Kids like these can also end up with foot and ankle problems since parents in all their zeal may encourage them to play through foot pain. Dr. Lavian and Dr. Levy podiatrists of Valencia, California have had to show parents x-rays of fractures before they'd take their kid out of the game.

Kids deserve better. Parents need to understand that kids who play sports are already more vulnerable to getting sports injuries than adults. Pushing them too hard and fast just increases that risk.

All kids go through a growth spurt and that isn't just their height. Their heel bones are also growing, and at a faster rate than their muscles, tendons, and ligaments. When muscles and tendons can't keep up with the heel bones they become stretched and cause injuries particularly when a kid is involved in sports like soccer than involves a lot of running and jumping. Although more common in boys ages 10-15, Sever's disease also happens in girls at an earlier age (8-13).

Kids who participate in sports are also liable to get other overuse injuries such as heel pain and Achilles tendonitis. Ankle sprains and fractures are also common.

Even if you aren't the type of parent described above, it's important to stay aware of how your kid is doing when they play sports. Even if they tend to blow off a limp, you shouldn't.

For more information about kids feet:

Ingrown toenails
Pain in balls of feet
Growing pains

Call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment, often same day. You can also request an appointment online.

Get our free foot book "Happy Feet for the Rest of Your Life" , mailed directly to your home.

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+

As America cheers for Carli Lloyd, who scored 3 goals in the first 15 minutes of the World Cup final for a 5-2 win over Japan, girl soccer players can once again dream big. Although it's been 16 years since the last win for the US Women's Soccer Team, girls have been playing soccer in ever greater numbers since that time. Now there are over 6 million girls in the US who play soccer.

Although soccer is a wonderful way for girls to get exercise, learn to work as a team, and improve their self-esteem, it's also a sport that has a high rate of foot and ankle injuries.

What are we talking about?

Sever's Disease (back of heel pain) - if your girl soccer player starts to complain of pain in the back of her heel, it's time to call time out. Youth between 8 and 15 still have still have open growth plates on the back of their heels which can become inflamed from trauma. Rest, ice, and immobilization can help ease the pain and stop the inflammation.

Plantar Fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis - these overuse injuries which cause inflammation of the tissue that runs from the heel to the toes are also common in girl soccer players. Rest is essential but so is reduction of inflammation using anti-inflammatory medication, stretching, and correction of faulty foot mechanics to prevent these injuries in the first place.

Ankle Sprains - any sport that includes twists or any off balance activity is bound to lead to ankle sprains. Don't just palm this off as a mild injury that doesn't need follow-up. If your kid is still feeling pain after day one, contact your local Seattle podiatrist to ensure that the ankle isn't fractured and tendons haven't torn.

Call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment, often same day. You can also request an appointment online.

Get our free foot book "Happy Feet for the Rest of Your Life" , mailed directly to your home.

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+

 

Each one of us is born with one pair of feet. These feet must last us a lifetime. As parents you worry about your kids—everytime they get sick you call the doctor just to make sure that cold that’s dragging on isn’t something really bad, you make sure that they are safe by making sure car seats and other safety devices are installed properly and that they wear their bicycle helmets, and you make sure that they have all they need for their intellectual, social, and physical development. But when was the last time you thought about your kid’s feet?

As your Seattle podiatrist, I decided to offer initial free exams to kids 12 and under this year because I know how important it is that kids get off on the right foot in life, literally. How do you know it’s a good idea to bring your kids or grandkids in to see me?

Here are some signs that your kids are having a problem with their feet:

Your Kids Have Trouble Keeping Up With Their Friends
If your kids are getting tired easily it may be because they have flat feet. The muscles in the feet and legs fatigue easily because their feet aren’t functioning as they should if they have this foot type.

Kids Voluntarily Withdraw From Activities They Usually Enjoy
No kid wants to sit on the sidelines. If they do, they might have heel pain. I recently wrote a blog about Sever’s disease, a condition in children due to an inflammation of the growth plate seen most often in kids who are involved in athletics.

They Avoid Showing You Their Feet
No kid wants to go to the doctor, so if they have a problem with their feet they may avoid showing them to you.  Start checking your kids feet for things like swelling around the nails (could indicate ingrown toenails), skin discoloration, calluses, or growths.

Your Kid Trips and Falls Frequently
Your may think their clumsiness is just a phase, but it could be caused by pigeon toes (in-toeing), balance problems, or a neuromuscular condition.

Your Kid Complains of Pain
No foot pain is normal in a kid. Even if you have a very active child that’s constantly falling, be on the look-out for swelling in the feet or ankles. Your child should be seen by a podiatrist for diagnosis and treatment.

(Source: American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons)

Make sure your kids can make the most out of their one pair of feet. If your child or grandchild is experiencing any of the problems above, make an appointment today with the Foot and Ankle Center of Lake City. For injuries, we do same day appointments. Call us at 206-368-7000 or request an appointment online.

 

By Dr. Rion Berg
August 29, 2014

You’ve had heel pain. You know how painful it can be particularly first thing in the morning. Kids can also develop heel pain. Sometimes it's plantar fasciitis caused by the same biomechanical issues as adult heel pain, but more commonly it's Sever's Disease which is a growth plate issue.

Unlike plantar fasciitis where the pain subsides as the day goes on, the pain in Sever's Disease gets worse as the day goes on. This condition typically affects children between the ages of 8 and 14, a time when they’re having their biggest growth spurt. At that time new bone is still forming at the growth plate of the heel bone. When kids are very active (youth athletes) during these growth years, too much repetitive stress on the growth plate causes inflammation and pain.

Youth athletes involved in soccer, track, basketball, and gymnastics are most susceptible to this condition.

So what do you look for?

Keep in mind kids won’t always tell you when they’re in pain, particularly if they think you’re going to make them stop playing their favorite sport. Be on the lookout for limping and toe walking. These are hints that they may be suffering from the pain of Sever’s Disease.

Fortunately if you bring your kid in to see me, your Seattle podiatrist, early on this condition won’t turn into a long term problem. If I find out your child does have Sever’s disease through examination and imaging, I’ll assess your child’s foot mechanics and then make the necessary recommendations to heal this condition.

Some things to help prevent this condition from occurring are:

  • A healthy diet to keep kids from becoming overweight
  • Supportive shoes that are appropriate to their chosen sport
  • Limit their wear of cleated athletic shoes
  • Avoid activity beyond their ability

To find out if your child is suffering from Sever’s Disease, contact the Foot and Ankle Center of Lake City at 206-368-7000 or request and appointment online.