Podiatrist Blog

Posts for tag: orthotics

By Joseph Stuto, DPM
March 03, 2020
Category: hammertoe

Hammertoes are usually very painful and require treatment to avoid other painful conditions from developing.

What is a hammertoe and how can it hurt you? A hammertoe is a condition in which the middle joint of your toes starts bending downwards, due to an imbalance of the muscles and tendons that keep the toes straight.

The bend is quite pronounced and causes pain as your toes are under constant strain being in an abnormal position. Another way hammertoes hurt your feet is by increasing the risk of corns or calluses that develop due to friction i.e. when the bend keeps hitting against the insides of your shoes.

Here are some common factors that can lead to the development of hammertoes:

  • Tight or ill-fitted shoes that make your toes bend or curl inwards

  • Age may affect the position of your toes: as the bones lose their strength, they may start bending your toes

  • At times, this condition may be hereditarily passed down to younger generations

  • Arthritis – a disease that also weakens your bones – could also cause hammertoes

  • Injury or bone fractures may also damage the structure and position of your toes

Treatments for hammertoes vary and depend on the severity and rigidity of the bend. If the bend is not flexible, surgical procedures may be required to correct the position of the joint.

However, the following preventive measure treatments may be useful in avoiding this condition:

  • Wearing shoes that have ample space between your big toe and the shoe wall, so that your toes don’t touch the insides of your shoes

  • Comfortable footwear that does not push or cram your toes is effective in preventing hammertoes

  • Flexing exercises that stretch your toe muscles are helpful in gaining strength

Our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Joseph Stuto, at Joseph Stuto, DPM, strongly advises our patients to visit their podiatrist regularly so that any unnoticeable conditions can be caught in time and addressed with proper treatment. Feel free to contact any of our offices located in Brooklyn Heights (718) 624-7537 and Brooklyn (718) 567-1403, New York, and schedule an appointment. For more extensive information on podiatry related topics, visit our patient library and blog section.

By Joseph Stuto, DPM
October 03, 2019
Category: Fall prevention

Did you know that falls are the leading factor behind fatal and non-fatal injuries among senior citizens? At Joseph Stuto, DPM, we want to make sure that our senior patients and your elderly loved ones are safe from trips and falls.

It’s a good idea to talk to your loved ones about the high risk of falls.

Here are a few ideas to help them prevent trips and falls:

  • Communicate: Your loved ones need to understand that a lifetime of wear and tear of the feet will require extra care and caution at this stage of their lives. Understand they may feel as though their independence may be lost, and reluctant to discuss with family. Let them know how important their presence is in your life which is why they need to take good care of themselves and especially their feet to avoid falls.
  • Observe: Keep a lookout for any signs of difficulty in walking or standing in your elderly relatives. They may hold on to furniture, walls or look for support to maintain their balance. Ask them if they feel any discomfort or pain. Get their feet examined by your podiatrist regularly to identify any changes that require immediate attention.
  • Exercise precaution: Look around the house and identify any tripping hazards like runners and carpets, wires and chargers, etc. Remove these hazards so that walking is easier as areas become more spacious. Install hand support railings if required.
  • Adopt a healthy lifestyle: As bones lose their strength, they require adequate amounts of calcium to prevent further deterioration. A healthy diet that includes leafy greens, nuts and seeds, lentils and beans, will provide a substantial source of calcium. Add light exercise, like walking, so that your muscles and bones remain strong and flexible.
  • Act: Using customized orthotics make walking more comfortable and stable. They also provide support to the heels and arches, thereby reducing pain and discomfort. Consult a podiatrist to help you identify the fall-risk factors and assist in measures to achieve the best outcomes for all your foot and ankle problems.

We encourage you to consult our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Joseph Stuto, for you and your older loved one’s foot problems. Visit us at our offices located in Brooklyn Heights (718) 624-7537 and Brooklyn (718) 567-1403, New York for guidance on foot health, or call us to schedule a convenient appointment.

By Joseph Stuto, DPM
September 25, 2019
Category: orthotics

Are you suffering from pain in your heels, arches or the balls of your feet? Has walking become an unbearable ordeal for you? Try using orthotic shoe inserts to relieve the pain in your feet and ankles.

By redistributing weight around various areas of your feet, orthotics lift undue pressure from the inflicted areas and provide the necessary support so that your feet feel comfortable and stress-free.

Some over-the-counter orthotic inserts are effective; however, if the pain persists, it is better to get customized ones made by your foot specialist according to your shape and size for optimal benefits. Here are some of the issues that can be avoided simply by using orthotic inserts:

  • Inflammation of the tissue running below your feet, connecting the heel bone to the toes (also known as the plantar fascia) can be reduced through inserts.
  • Inserts provide support and reduce the intensity of impact which may result in the occurrence of Achilles tendonitis (pain caused by soreness of the muscle joining the calf to the heel).
  • They help correct your posture which may also reduce any knee or back pain that you may be encountering.
  • Orthotics provide the necessary support which may eliminate the need for surgery for joint issues or bone protrusions.
  • They provide stability and balance, thereby preventing falls and resultant sprains or bone fractures.

It is strongly advised that you visit your foot doctor and get your feet examined regularly to identify any issues that may be affecting your gait or posture. Your podiatrist will also direct you to use the right inserts that will maximize the health of your feet.

At Joseph Stuto, DPM, our expert podiatrist Dr. Joseph Stuto specializes in treating a range of foot and ankle conditions like sports injuries, fractures and wounds, diabetic foot issues, toenail infections and more. Feel free to call our offices located in Brooklyn Heights (718) 624-7537 and Brooklyn (718) 567-1403, New York and get your feet back in shape as soon as possible!

 

By contactus@brooklyn-podiatrists.com
August 13, 2019

Orthotic inserts are the most widespread and safe solutions to a number of foot and ankle problems. While standard inserts are available over-the-counter, orthotic inserts that are customized by a podiatrist to treat a specific problem are more effective.

Here are some of the most frequent issues that can be addressed by using orthotics:

  • Inflammation of the tissue under your foot that connects the heel with the toes, also known as plantar fasciitis;
  • Heel and arch pain caused by inadequate support or ill-shaped shoes that harm the shape of your feet;
  • Soreness due to Achilles tendonitis;
  • The occurrence of bunions and other bone and joint deformities are mostly seen as a result of wearing poorly-fitted shoes;
  • Corns and calluses that cause your skin to become hard and scaly, making you prone to fungal infections and bacteria;
  • Swelling and pain experienced at the ball of the foot arising from excessive stress on the feet;
  • Muscle sprains and bone fractures may be avoided due to enhanced stability and a stronger grip.

Depending on the kind of foot condition our patients have, our podiatrist, Dr. Joseph Stuto can recommend either a soft orthotic insert or a hard one, designed exclusively to treat the particular issue that you are encountering.

It is important and more beneficial to get the inserts customized according to the shape of your feet. If your insert does not provide your feet the support it is supposed to, your feet could suffer even more.

Know that your orthotics can take you a long way if you let them. Make the right choice and use the inserts for your well-being. For your queries regarding orthotic inserts, or any questions regarding the condition of your feet, feel free to contact Joseph Stuto, DPM at (718) 624-7537. Our team of experts is experienced and trained to treat a diverse range of ankle and foot disorders and are here to address your concerns.

By Joseph Stuto, DPM
October 30, 2018
Category: foot deformities

What allows the body to carry and distribute weight efficiently? The answer lies in the arches of our feet. Arches exist for good reason. They not only act as shock absorbers but also help our feet adapt to uneven surfaces by evenly distributing weight throughout our feet. Flat feet (pes planus) is a common foot deformity where the foot appears to have a very low or no arch.

People are more likely to develop flat feet if they have suffered severe trauma to the feet. For example, a motorbike accident or a serious sports injury can cause the arches to fall. Many medical experts believe that flat feet are inherited. It can pass on from parents to children in the genes. In some cases, this condition occurs over time due to aging, obesity, diabetes, pregnancy (hormonal changes in the body), and arthritis.

Early diagnosis and the right treatment can give you relief and prevent further complications. Here are some key things that can help your flat feet.

  • Orthotics: Slide those orthotics insoles into your shoes to relieve you of foot pain by providing much-needed arch support. Custom-made orthotics are specific to your feet and may be used to relieve stress on the arch and minimize pain if the feet roll too far inward. It is important to note that these measures will treat only the symptoms such as reducing your pain and helping you walk more comfortably.
  • Well-fitted shoes: If your flat feet are causing you a certain level of discomfort, then it is best to wear shoes that best provide relief. Wear supportive and well-fitted shoes to help your flat feet find relief.
  • Exercise and stretching: People who tend to have flat feet should follow strict programs aimed at strengthening foot and ankle muscles. Exercises may involve picking up marbles with your toes. A good stretch can also help alleviate the flattening effect. In order to get a good stretch, one may practice different yoga positions.
  • Maintain ideal body weight. People who are obese and overweight are more likely to develop flat feet. Increasing weight can tear the tibial tendon which can cause the arches to fall. Losing weight can help reduce the pressure and pain.

If you are experiencing any pain from flat feet, it is important to schedule a consultation with a podiatrist to fully assess the situation.

At Joseph Stuto, DPM, our team of doctors can help you diagnose and treat a variety of foot and ankle conditions including flat feet. Our podiatrists Dr. Joseph C. Stuto and Dr. Joseph A. Stuto provide top quality foot and ankle care to our patients. For more information you can visit our website or schedule an appointment by calling (718) 624-7537.