Prospect Podiatry Responsive

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foot Health Week - Caring for your feet!

  1. How fast do toenails grow?

toenails grow about 1.6 mm per month on average which is less than half the rate of fingernails  which grow  about 3.5 mm per month

 

  1. How long does it take to grow a toenail?

It takes about 12 – 18 months for a big toe nail to regrow fully after you lose the nail.

 

  1. Why do toenails grow so slowly?

The short answer is blood supply. Fingers have a better more oxygen rick blood supply than toes. The greatest distance that blood has to travel from your heart is the tips of your toes. 

 

  1. What factors affect nail growth?

Overall health, nutrition, and proper nail care can affect growth rates. There are no special lotion or nail polish that make the nails grow faster, in fact, some products with harsh chemicals can damage nail health.

 

  1. How should I look after toenails?

Start with a balanced diet. Iron deficiency can lead to brittle nails along with not enough protein. Zinc is also important for healthy nails. Calcium which is good for bone health does not have much effect on  nail growth. Biotin a Vitamin B complex may help strengthen brittle nails. Dry skin also means dry nails so regular use of a moisturizer. Extreme dryness can cause the skin around the nails to split which can allow bacteria, fungus, and other infections to enter. Just as extreme dryness is a problem so are excessively moist sweaty feet, so manage perspiration with medicated powders, socks and shoes. Poorly fitting shoes can lead to permanently thickened nails by damaging the nail matrix and nail bed.   Do not push cuticles back as this can break the seal between the nail and the skin which can allow bacteria and fungus to enter the matric which is the growing part of the nail. Some chronic diseases such as diabetes, hyperthyroidism, psoriasis, eczema and vascular disease can affect nail growth so managing these diseases will be important for healthy nails

 

  1. Nail grooming, what does this involve?

Start with the appropriate tools.  A nail file and a good pair of nail clippers will last a lifetime. A plier type of nail clipper will be strong and have a scissor action that will cut the nail and less likely to splinter the nail especially if they are brittle or thick. Cut toenails after a shower or bath as they will be softer and easier to cut. Best to trim the nails to the shape of the end of the toes and round the corners with a file so there are no sharp edges. Good nail clippers have slightly curved blades to allow for this. Nails do not have to be “ruler-straight” but do avoid cutting down the side of the nail as this can leave rough edges and spicules that can puncture the flesh and lead to infections.

 

  1. When should I seek professional help for nails?

Pain, and infection should be dealt with immediately. It is always best to seek advice for anything that looks unusual.

 Prospect Podiatry Responsive

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iritija mumu Kuwaritja (The Past & Nowadays)

Artist Julie Yatitja 

Julie has painted Indulkana community, her home. Contemporary landmarks are the shop, clinic, and church and school, which are all essential and yet sparse resources in community. Also depicted are the hills, bushes, flowers, and rock holes. Interdispersed are images from the past when Anangu people were hunting and gathering, sitting around campfires and rockholes talking and eating.

Artist Julie Yatitja | Anangu Backyard, Stories for the Children 2008.

These works have been purchased through programs such as Adelaide Festival Centre’s Our Mob, Our Young Mob, Anangu Backyard and Tarnanthi Art Fair. 

Adelaide Festival Centre’s Our Mob
23 August - 3 October 2019

https://www.adelaidefestivalcentre.com.au/whats-on/exhibitions/our-mob-2019-art-by-south-australian-aboriginal-artists/

Tarnanthi Art Fair 18 - 20 October 2019

https://www.agsa.sa.gov.au/whats-on/event-calendar/tarnanthi-art-fair/

 Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Andrew weighs in on the 'Real v online Shoe Store' debate;  

As a podiatrist who is also a podiatric surgeon, I would like to comment on the pitfalls of purchasing shoes online.

I am seeing an increasing number of people who are having foot problems as a result of purchasing shoes online that don’t fit or are not suitable.

The main reason is they have purchased shoes online so save a few dollars, returns are often a hassle and with a lot of online stores, returns incur additional freight costs.

The inconvenience of returning shoes, people put up with or make do with the wrong size shoes which can cause foot pain, which is why they end up seeing people like me.

Buying online can be a false economy. An example I give to patients is to think of how many shoes you try on in a shoe store before you find the one that fits correctly and is comfortable.

That is not an option available in the online world. Shoe sizing with UK, US, European and metric shoe sizing is also a source of confusion and problems with getting the correct fit with online sales.

Shoe size is generally only a guide, as you often need a different size depending on the shoe styles and brand.

To me, it is simply not worth the risk, unless you are purchasing exactly the same shoe and style that you have already.

You are much safer going to a footwear retailer that offers good service in terms of fitting and recommending shoes.

Possibly a reason traditional bricks and mortar shoe retailers that are surviving or prospering is they offer good shoe-fitting service and advice within a range of quality brands.

As I say to patients, you are not just buying a shoe – you are also purchasing service in the form of the retailer's expertise.

Shoe retailers that are losing business to online sales, in my opinion, are more likely to be those that are either self-service or provide minimal service, so you end up fitting yourself without any assistance.  – Andrew van Essen

Photo by Jaclyn Moy on Unsplash

 

Men's Health Week  Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Men's Health Week

Nearly 75 percent of people report at least one foot ailment a year—and that’s whether you’re an athlete or not, reports research from the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA)

Typically women suffer more foot pain than men primarily as a result of the type of shoes they wear however there are certain foot problems that will affect men more than women. 

On top of that men are more prone to ignoring pain hoping it will go away. Men also may not take care of their feet as routinely as women do.

As a part of Men’s Health Week, I would like to highlight a few common foot problems that affect men and boys.

 

Photo Credit: James Baldwin

Pain : Under your heel

This sharp, shooting pain which you may find occur first thing in the morning when you get up to walk or after sitting for long periods of time is typically plantar fasciitis. It comes from inflammation of a band of connective tissue called the plantar fascia that extends along the bottom of your heel to the ball of your foot. Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common problems people come to see a podiatrist.

Chronic fasciitis if ignored could turn into plantar fasciosis, where the tissues aren’t inflamed but actually degenerate due to repeated stress where you will feel the pain most after waking up or prolonged sitting.

Middle age or overweight males common will develop plantar fasciitis. Occupations, where you stand or walk a lot, will also predispose to plantar fasciitis. Runners and athletes can get plantar fasciitis because of excessive or increase in training.

Give yourself a massage by rolling a golf ball or frozen water bottle under your foot. This relieves the inflammation. Daily calf stretching, particularly in the morning when you get up and avoid flat shoes or thongs will help. Look for a shoe with a slight heel raise and a cushioned sole. See a podiatrist if it does not settle.

Infections : Ingrown Toenails Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Infections : Ingrown Toenails

Shoes and socks create a warm moist environment which is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, fungus, mould, and yeast which is why care and attention to feet is needed to prevent infections.

 

Ingrown toenails might seem like a small issue until you get one because they can be really painful. They are more common in males in particular teenage boys. Hygiene, sweaty feet nail cutting and hereditary factors that can cause the edge of the nail to curve in all predispose to ingrowing toenails. If you’re getting ingrown toenails, you might need to change the way you use the clippers. Toenails should be cut straight across the top – not arced with the curve of the toe.

An injury – like a stubbed toe – can also cause the nail to fracture at an odd angle. To treat at home, soak your foot in a solution of warm salt. Water and apply a good antiseptic and if you can while the nail is still soft, wedge a piece of cotton. This will help the nail grow up and over the skin again.

 

Damage to toenails from sport and poorly fitted shoes can also make nails more susceptible to fungal infection as the fungus can get in underneath the nail and slowly spread. This is usually not painful but quite unsightly, difficult to treat and if ignored will cause permanent damage to the nail.

Pain : Big toe joint Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Pain : Big toe joint

Arthritis, bunions and gout and are common causes of pain in the big toe joint. In young middle age males, the most common cause is a condition called hallux limitus. 

Hallux limitus which is essentially osteoarthritis is generally started after damage to the joint years ago such as stubbing, repeated kicking or hyperextending the toe which can happen a lot in male sports such as football. Damage, although small at the time will go unnoticed for years but will cause the start of degenerative joint disease which lead to bone spurs on the top of the joint which restricts the movement of the big toe and will cause pain.

 

Bunions are quite different and will cause a bump on the side of the big toe and are due mainly to hereditary factors. While they are more common in women they do occur in men.

For hallux limitus and bunions over the counter anti-inflammatory will help short term along with orthotics (shoe inserts) and wide fitting supportive shoe. In severe cases, Surgery may be required.

 

Gout has been known in history as the “King’s disease”. It earned its nickname as it often occurred after rich feasts of red meats, liver, seafood, and beer but in reality, anyone can develop gout. The incidence of gout is rising due to increasing levels of obesity, sedentary lifestyles, and alcohol consumption. Gout is a form of arthritis in which crystals of urate accumulate in the joints, particularly in the big toe joint. Urate crystals form when there’s an excessive amount of uric acid in the bloodstream after eating food high in purines or for hereditary metabolic factors. Medications do exist to treat gout but can be managed with improvements to diet, regular exercise, and reducing your alcohol intake.

Infections : Athletes foot Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Infections : Athletes foot

Athlete’s Foot is an itchy, burning rash that forms between the toes due to a fungal infection. Fungal spore is in many places in the general environment thrive in warm, moist places like locker rooms and public showers where people are in bare feet and the fungus can be transmitted easily to your feet. It is oftentimes more common in men and boys because they are less likely to have regular foot hygiene routines.

 

Athlete’s foot can be treated with topical creams and by keeping your feet dry, as the fungus can prosper in warm and wet locations, like in a sweaty sock and shoe. An athlete’s foot infection is fairly easy to avoid with good hygiene. Helpful advice for boys and men is that it takes more than just dying between your toe after showering.  Giving your feet time out of shoes and socks so they can dry out and always wear shower shoes flip flops when sharing facilities. Wash or replace old, sweaty sneakers as the fungus will remain in the shoes and socks and can reinfect your foot.

 

 

 

How many steps do we make in a lifetime? Prospect Podiatry Responsive

How many steps do we make in a lifetime?

216,262,500!

This might explain why we experience foot pain!

The average moderately active person take around 7,500 step/day.  If you maintain that daily average and live until 80 years of age, you’ll have walked about 216,262,500 steps in your lifetime.

Doing the math, the average person with the average stride living until 80 will walk a distance of around 110,000 miles.  

Which is the equivalent of walking about 5 times around the Earth, right on the equator.

 

Feet for Walking Clubfoot Project  Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Feet for Walking Clubfoot Project

June 3rd we celebrate 'World Clubfoot Day', something very dear to the hearts of all at Prospect Podiatry.

Since 1996, Andrew van Essen has volunteered with the 'Feet for Walking' program of the Australian College of Podiatric Surgeons and initiated with co-founder Dr. Paul Warren Wade the 'Feet for Walking Clubfoot Project' in Central Vietnam in 2004 to treat the congenital deformity that, left untreated, can lead to severe disability.

Andrew left the project in 2011 but the work undertaken and friendships forged still remains the most rewarding work of his professional career.

 

Podiatry Legends Podcast, Andrew van Essen  Prospect Podiatry Responsive

Podiatry Legends Podcast, Andrew van Essen

 

 

 

 

 

Ever wondered where the inspiration comes from to become a Podiatrist? Podiatrist Specialist, Andrew van Essen talks to Dr. Tyson Franklin about how he stays connected with the Podiatry profession after so many years as a surgeon. 

Click the image to listen to the podcast. 

 

12 May 2019

Caring for your feet this Winter

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We all want feet looking as good as this picture, next summer, right?

Well here are some good tips from the Prospect Podiatry crew to help you achieve healthy happy feet.

General skin care

Cold weather can slow the circulation to your feet. Your skin can become dry and cause cracks, especially in your heels. So moisturise regularly, yes even in winter. 

If you do not have good circulation, keep a lookout for chilblains particularly over pressure points in your toes. If you smoke it’s good to know that it reduces blood flow to your feet even further.

Toenails

In growing toenails are more common in winter as closed in shoes put pressure on the toe.  When your feet are kept in a warm, moist environment for long periods of time – like winter boots – it provides an ideal environment for infection to thrive.

Another problem is toenail fungus. If nails are damaged and if there is any tinea present, this can spread beneath the nail and can be very difficult to treat. 

 Remove your nail polish in winter

Give your toenails break from the harsh nail polish. The whitish discoloration you sometimes see after removing nail polish is a superficial fungal infection and should be treated.

It’s important to keep your feet clean, dry and manicured to avoid issues such as corns, calluses, toenail fungus, and ingrown toenails.

To keep your feet properly maintained Prospect Podiatry recommends:

•    Washing them with soap and warm water daily

•    Using a pumice stone to smooth out heels

•    Moisturising your feet with a good cream daily

•    Trimming your nails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails

•    Remove nail polish for winter

Giving your feet a winter pamper will keep them looking nice so you’ll be ready when summer comes back around.

Prospect Podiatry Tips

Podiatric Surgeon, Andrew van Essen and General Podiatrist, Jessica Ngo

 

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11 Feb 2019

October is Foot Health Month

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What is the most used, least thought about part of your body......FEET.

Our feet are a bit out of the way, often covered up so they don't get that much attention.....only when they hurt.

We all go to the dentist for a check up because prevention is better than cure but your feet need as much attention as your face.

 

During October make a time to come in for a check. Call us on 83445690.

 

 

19 Oct 2016

Bunion Surgery - What You Should Know

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Bunions are a common problem, so as part of Foot Health Month, here is our guide to bunions - what they are, how to fix them, and best of all, how to avoid them.