How to Pamper Your Feet

Women love to pamper their feet, and why not? As long as you don’t have poor circulation, or any open wounds or other obvious problems, here is a protocol to make your feet feel their best. If you have had a surgical procedure, refer to the specific instructions provided, but if you are just looking for a way to make your feet look and feel better, give this simple 3 step approach a try.

1. Soak your feet.

Podiatrists around the world love the Epsom salt soak. Fill a foot-soaking tub with warm water and add ¼ cup of Epsom Salts, available at just about any pharmacy or grocery store. Soak for at least 10 minutes, as this helps soften the feet.

2. Scrub your feet.

Mix ½ cup of kosher salt and ½ cup of olive oil into a paste, and gently apply to the heels and rest of the foot. Gently scrub your feet using a warm water dampened old terry cloth wash cloth, as this exfoliates the dead skin and the olive oil moisturizes.

3. Soften your feet.

Wipe honey all over your feet, then let it settle for 10 to 15 minutes. You can then rinse off in the shower or tub, or re use the Epsom salt soak from Step 1. Towel dry.

For dry skin that has been difficult to soften, try applying moisturizer at night, then sleeping with athletic socks on to hold the moisturizer to the skin, and it also helps keep the cream from getting all over the bedsheets or anything else. In extreme cases, many podiatrists and dermatologists recommend using moisturizer “under occlusion”, which means applying the recommended moisturizer to the heels and feet, then applying a saran wrap type covering around the feet, then a sock on over that, removing in the morning, then showering off.

Commercially Available Insoles

Over the counter insoles

Many patients with foot, arch or heel pain like to try a commercially available shoe insole before seeing a podiatrist. If a patient is having chronic, mild pain, immediately discontinue high impact activities, such as basketball or running, and start wearing a running style shoe. You can pull out the removable insole that came with your running shoes without too much difficulty with your fingers. If they appear worn, and/or you are experiencing mild arch or heel pain, I recommend trying these insoles to see if this improves the symptoms. If the symptoms do not improve withing two weeks, or worsen at any time, do not hesitate to call for any appointment.

Spenco PolySorb Cross Trainer www.spenco.com They are also available at Zappos and Amazon, and they usually cost around $20.

Timberland Pro Anti-Fatigue Technology www.timberland.com Foam absorbs shock, antimicrobial layer keeps odors away. Cost around $30.

Currex www.currexsole.com Cost around $50.

What is Hammertoe Surgery?

What is Hammertoe Surgery?

Hammertoe surgery is an out patient procedure performed by Dr. Bennett to treat an abnormal curve or bend in the middle joint of the toe. This acquired deformity often makes moving the affected foot and toe painful, and difficult to fit comfortably in a shoe. Often, the affected toe will rub against the top and inside of a person’s shoe resulting in a corn or callus, and in extreme cases can ulcerate. If conservative or palliative care such as trimming the callus off and padding the area, or orthotics, or toe stretching exercises fail to ease the discomfort, hammer toe surgery is often recommended. During the surgery, the foot or just the toe involved is anesthetized, and Dr. Bennett will make an incision centered over the top of the affected toe. Depending on the severity of the deformity, there are various types of procedures that can be performed to correct or straighten the toe. Various instruments are used to expose the middle toe joint and remove or remodel bone as needed. Additional incisions may be made to prevent the toe from bending downward. Surgical hardware such as pins may be placed in the toe to aid in the healing process. Small absorbable and non-absorbable sutures will then be used close the surgical incision, and are the skin incisions are typically removed 10 to 14 days after the surgery.

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Replacing Running Shoes

Is it time for new running shoes for the upcoming Chicago Marathon?

Experienced runners know their running shoes have to be replaced regularly, but the question is: how often?

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the EVA in running shoes starts to show structural damage as early as 120 miles, and by the time a runner completes 500 miles in the same pair of shoes, around 45% of the initial shock absorption has been lost.

But the weight of a runner affects the deterioration rate as well. A man’s size 10 shoe for example, might be worn by a 130 pound high school athlete, or 220 pound middle aged adult. It makes sense that the heavier athlete is going to wear down the sole and other structures long before the lighter one. To do this, divide 75,000 by your weight, and that number represents the upper limit in miles for a pair of running shoes. For example, if you weigh 185lbs, 75,000 divided by 185 equals 405 miles for that pair of shoes.

If you have any questions, please call Dr. Bennett at 312 266-7404.

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