Posts for category: Senior Foot Care
As you get older, all those years of walking, running, dancing, and standing takes a toll. While completely natural, age-related changes to the form and function of your feet and ankles are inevitable. But you can minimize and postpone many of these effects with proper care and regular visits to your foot doctor.
5 foot and ankle problems that are likely to occur with age:
- Joint problems—Arthritic conditions tend to worsen as we age and often affect toe and ankle joints, causing considerable pain and discomfort.
- Your feet get larger—Due to the effects of gravity and pressure over time, the tendons and ligaments in your feet will gradually loosen as you age. Your arch will flatten and the overall length of your foot will increase considerably. Always have your feet properly measured each time you buy shoes to ensure they offer the proper support and cushioning. Custom orthotic inserts can help with a variety of foot and ankle problems.
- Your toenails get thicker—Nail growth slows down as we age and hormone and circulation changes will cause them to become more brittle and much thicker. This can make them harder to trim properly, increasing the chances of ingrown toenails and fungal toenail infections.
- Infections—Your immune response weakens as you get older and fungal and bacterial infections become harder to fight.
- Dry skin—Dehydration becomes more of a problem as you age, so be sure to drink plenty of healthy fluids throughout the day. Drying skin increases the formation of calluses and heel fissures on your feet.
If you are experiencing age-related foot and ankle problems, enlisting the services of a skilled podiatrist will help you find the best solution. Schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry Center in New Albany, IN. Dr. Zahid Ladha, our dedicated podiatrist, delivers high-quality podiatric care for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!
Your feet take a lot of punishment over the course of a lifetime. It’s estimated that the average person will put over 125,000 miles on them, so they are bound to suffer from the same types of injuries as the rest of our aging bodies, and then some!
Effects of aging on the feet include:
- Balance related problems—A disease called peripheral neuropathy primarily affects those diagnosed with diabetes and is characterized by a lack of feeling and numbness in the extremities, including the feet and ankles. In addition to other problems, this lack of feeling can make it difficult to maintain balance, increasing the occurrence of falls and injuries.
- Skin abnormalities and lesions—Our skin becomes less hydrated and resilient as we age resulting in conditions including cracked heels, corns, and calluses. Lesions may also develop and should always be evaluated since malignant melanoma can look like other skin problems that are benign.
- Weakening of tendons, ligaments, and muscles—As these structures lose their strength and flexibility, a variety of ailments ensue including tendonitis, falling arches, and muscle spasms and strains.
- Toenail issues—As we get older, our toenails become more brittle and so thick that they are hard to trim properly. One of the leading causes of ingrown toenails and infection is improperly cut toenails.
- Arthritis—Osteoarthritis often strikes the big toe, middle foot, and ankle joints. It increases the debilitation caused by other conditions including bunions, gout, and hammertoes.
- Swelling—Age related hormone imbalances, circulatory problems, and certain medications can increase inflammation in the feet and ankles.
If you are experiencing age related foot or ankle problems, schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Zahid Ladha, D.P.M. is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!
In honor of Fall Prevention Awareness Day, which not coincidentally occurs on the first day of fall, it’s important to raise awareness of the risk of severe injury and even death from falls in older adults.
Falls are the leading cause of injury in those over 65, so knowing how to reduce your chances of falling is paramount to staying healthy. Many older individuals also suffer from osteoporosis, which is a condition that affects over 60 million people in the US alone. Osteoporosis causes a weakening of the bones and makes them more likely to break in a fall, often resulting in injuries like sprained ankles or severe complications such as those found with compound fractures.
To minimize bone loss and help reduce the risk of falling and permanent injury, there are a variety of steps you can take. Some of these include the following:
- Consume a diet that is high in calcium. Yogurt, kale, and broccoli are three excellent sources.
- Get sufficient vitamin D in your diet and through sunlight and/or supplements to prevent bone loss.
- Perform daily exercise to strengthen the muscles, tissues and tendons surrounding your foot and ankle bones. Exercise also helps improve flexibility and balance.
- Install railings, lighting, and remove any tripping hazards to make your home safer.
- Stop smoking, which is essential for the optimum good health of your bones and the rest of your body.
- Avoid alcohol. It causes dehydration and instability that may lead to a severe fall.
- Talk to your foot doctor about any balance problems and consider using custom orthotics that can help improve ankle stability.
If you need help determining ways to increase the strength of your feet and ankles to avoid falls, schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha, D.P.M. is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!