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For many athletes and weekend exercise warriors, winter is a time
to enhance their cardiovascular health. Many partake in winter
sports such as sledding, skiing, snowboarding, rough-and-tumble
ice hockey, or casual ice skating. Winter sports offer a fast track
for fun, but expose the body to injuries, especially foot and ankle
Some common winter and snow sports injuries related to the foot
and ankle include:
• Frostbite – The symptoms of frostbite include skin-color changes,
from blue to whitish, and a feeling of burning or numbness;
• Blisters – Friction in winter sports footwear often causes blisters;
• Neuromas – Enlarged benign growths of nerves between the toes
are caused by friction in tight footwear and can result in pain,
burning, tingling, or numbness. Neuromas require professional
treatment, including an evaluation of skates and boots, from a
• Sprains and strains – The stress of skiing and skating can result
in sprains and strains of the foot and ankle. They can be treated
with rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE). If pain persists,
seek medical attention from a podiatric physician; and
• Subungual hematoma – Pressure in the toe box of a ski or skate
can cause bleeding under the toenail known as a subungual
hematoma. This condition should be treated by a podiatric
physician to prevent the loss of a toenail.
Podiatric physicians recommend properly fitted shoes or boots
to prevent winter and snow injuries. With adequate preparation
and proper equipment, you can prevent most injuries common to
winter and snow sports.
• Maintain an adequate fitness level all year round. Being fit is the
best way to avoid many sports-related injuries in winter.
• Find a buddy who enjoys your sport. Never participate in winter
• Warm up thoroughly before activity. Cold muscles, tendons,
and ligaments are vulnerable to injury. Make sure to cool down
thoroughly afterwards, as well.
• Wear several
layers of light,
clothing for warmth
• Wear proper footwear that is
in good condition and keeps feet
warm and dry. Footwear should provide
ample ankle support, as well.
• Wear appropriate protective gear, including
goggles, helmets, gloves, and padding.
• Wear a blended sock that “wicks” sweat away from the skin.
Consult your podiatric physician for recommendations.
• Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your sports
• Move to a warm, dry environment if your feet get wet. The skin
tissues of wet, cold feet are in danger of freezing (frostbite).
Information courtesy of the American Podiatric Medical Association
DID YOU KNOW...
- Each foot has 25 bones - both feet contain nearly one quarter of all the bones in the body (206 bones)
- There is an intricate network of over 100 tendons, ligaments, and muscles in each foot
- Every step places 1.5 times your body weight of pressure on your foot (a 150 pound person places 225 pounds of pressure on the foot with every step)
- The average person walks 5,000 to 7,000 steps a day.
- A person will walk nearly 100,000 miles in a lifetime, between three and four times the earth's circumference!
Many people will often ask "Do you treat bunions?" or "Can I see Dr. Baker for my sprained ankle?" or "I have a weird bump on my foot. Can Dr. Cohen treat that?" The asnwer to all of these questions is yes!
Podiatrists are physicians to the foot and ankle similar to the way a cardiologist is to the heart...they treat all aspect of their specialty. Dr. Cohen and Dr. Baker are both board certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery (www.abps.org) and treat all conditions related to the foot and ankle from a wart to an ingrown nail to a bunion requiring surgery,etc. Podiatrists complete a four year undergraduate education, four years of graduate study at a podiatric medical college, and then complete a 2 or 3 year hospital based post graduate training.
For a list of the variety of foot conditions we treat please visit our Services Page.
If you're in Nashville, Smyrna, Carthage or anywhere in the middle Tennessee area don't hesitate to call us today if we can help you with your feet or ankles. We're here when you need us...
Should you go to try on shoes first thing in the morning when the swelling in your feet is down? Or is it better at the end of the day? Most people tend to want to go shoe shopping early in the day when their feet feel good but the truth is you should go at the end of the day when your feet are more tired and swollen. By doing so you ensure that the shoes you try will feel good when your feet are at their worst. It will also help ensure that the shoes won't pinch or bind since your feet are already swollen. Wearing well made comfort shoes are best for your feet and will provide the most support and cushion for your feet. If you wear orthotics try to get shoes where the insole can be removed to ensure the best fit. Most of all, remember that your shoes should feel good when you buy them. A well fitted pair of shoes doesn't need to be "broken in."
If you are experiencing any kind of foot pain that doesn't allow you comfort in any kind of shoes than you may have a condition like a neuroma or tendinitis that requires medical attention. Dr. Cohen and Dr. Baker are here to help you in Nashville, Smyrna, or Carthage if your feet are in pain. Don't hesitate ... your feet have to last you a lifetime!
We'd like to wish all of our wonderful patients a great New Year of fabulous health and happiness. We encourage you to begin exercising if you haven't been (safely, of course with the consultation of your primary care physician) to promote better health. If at any time you begin to experience foot pain then please don't ignore it. All too often people will start to limp on the other foot in the hopes that the pain will go away. Often, however, patients will end up causing other problems in their "good foot" by limping along such as plantar fasciitis or tendinitis. We're here for you when you need us...don't suffer with foot pain.
Again, thanks for a fabulous 2011 and we're looking forward to helping our patients experience great foot health in 2012. Enjoy!