4 Exercises to Prevent Plantar Fasciitis

Have you ever experienced pain in your heels or the arches of your feet? Chances are that you may be suffering from a condition known as “plantar fasciitis”.

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the tissue (plantar fascia) that runs under your feet and connects your toes with the heel. Reasons that may cause this inflammation include wear and tear due to sports activities, incessant pressure, sudden impact, and stress.

Here are a few exercises that can strengthen your muscles and safeguard your plantar fascia:

  1. Stretch your arches: you can sit with one leg over the other and gently pull your toes towards your shin to feel a stretch under your foot. Another way is to place a stretching band under your feet, pull your feet towards yourself and hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Release and then repeat the routine.
  2. Roll a ball: while sitting on a chair, place a ball or any round object under your feet and rotate it to loosen up any tight muscles under your feet and toes.
  3. Ease your calves: place one leg forward and extend the other towards the back while you lean your hands against the wall. Bend the forward leg slightly and feel the stretch in the calf of the leg at the back. Repeat a few times and then switch legs.
  4. Stretching your toes: wrapping your toes with an elastic band, stretching them apart and then closing them, is also an effective exercise to build muscle strength.

If you feel pain in your feet or are unsure about the cause of your discomfort, we, at Step by Step Family Foot Care, urge you to visit your podiatrist right away.

To avoid any permanent tissue damage, schedule an appointment with Dr. Debra B. Manheim, who is an expert in treating a range of foot conditions and disorders such as arthritis, neuromas, sports injuries, diabetic foot complications, flat feet, and fungal toenails, etc. Contact us and save your feet from any further harm.

Keep Your Feet Fit for Summer Fun Indulgences

Summer activities expose our feet to many risks and hazards. However, that does not mean that one should deprive oneself of all the fun that this season has to offer.

Being careful and making sensible choices can help protect our feet from harm. At Step by Step Family Foot Care, we advise our patients to keep their eyes open for the following:

  • Fungus and bacteria: Infections are thriving during summertime and spread easily if not treated immediately. Fungal toenails, athlete’s foot, blisters, warts, and calluses are common occurrences and should be treated as early as possible.
  • Heel pain: This pain is ascribed to the most popular summer footwear i.e. flip-flops. These airy and easy-to-slip-on shoes provide the least support to your foot arch, causing your heels to come under stress due to excessive weight. It is advised to wear shoes that provide adequate support or use orthotic inserts for appropriate distribution of your body weight on your feet.
  • Sprains: The chances of sprains and stress fractures increase if you wear uncomfortable shoes for long durations or during intensive physical activity. Shoes with a stronger grip, softer insoles, and proper arch support are highly recommended to prevent injuries and pain.
  • Wounds and cuts: Wearing open shoes or being barefoot increases the risk of being injured by splinters and sharp objects. If you suffer a cut or a wound, make sure you have it cleaned up properly and use an antiseptic to prevent infection. It is advised to keep your wounds open and dry to avoid pus and bacterial infections.

If you encounter any of the above conditions and feel that your feet are not improving or healing properly, we urge you to visit our Parsippany, NJ office or call us at (973) 917-3785 to schedule an appointment. Our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Debra B. Manheim will conduct a thorough examination and administer the appropriate course of treatment to restore the health of your feet.

Are Ingrown Toenails Giving You Trouble?

An ingrown toenail is a condition in which the nails tend to grow into the skin of the toes. This can cause burning, pain, swelling, and even numbness. If left unattended, ingrown toenails may start bleeding, or become infected with pus and bacteria.

What are the causes of ingrown toenails and how can they be prevented?

  • Restrictive and ill-fitted shoes tend to compress your toes together and push your nails inside your skin leading to ingrown toenails. Wearing proper shoes and leaving your feet open every now and then will keep your toenails safe and secure.
  • Footwear that does not have ample space between the big toe and the inside of the shoe wall may constantly rub against your toenail and make you fall prey to ingrown nails. Therefore, it is integral to wear the right size of shoes and see any foot changes that may occur.
  • The most common reason cited for ingrown toenails is cutting your nails in a curved shape. Foot doctors recommend that the nails be cut straight so that they do not grow into the skin surrounding the nail area.
  • Cutting your nails too short can also cause your nails to penetrate your skin when they are growing back.
  • Bumping into hard surfaces and injuring your nails can also change the shape of your toenails and the direction in which they grow. Keep your feet safe and watch where you are going.

If you notice any unusual changes in your ankles, feet or toenails like swelling, redness, nail or skin thickening, discoloration, bone structure alterations etc. Do not ignore such signs and visit your podiatrist immediately.

Moreover, if you are unsure about your foot condition or require more information, we suggest you visit our patient education library or schedule an appointment with our board-certified podiatrist Dr. Debra B. Manheim at Step by Step Family Foot Care. Visit or contact our Parsippany office at your ease and convenience.

Are You Suffering From Foot Odor?

As temperatures rise, sweating is a very common outcome in the feet, especially when you are wearing closed shoes and socks. Here is a sweaty fact for you: On average, each foot produces 500ml of sweat daily, that is equivalent to a cup of sweat per day!

Excessive sweating that is unable to evaporate and instead gets contained in the shoes, creates a nurturing platform for bacterial and fungal infections, causing odor.

The most commonly observed reasons that cause smelly feet are:

  • The menacing “sweat!” Surprisingly, moisture itself is not smelly; it is the isovaleric acid produced by bacteria that causes the smell.
  • Athlete’s Foot and other infections: These skin conditions result from fungi that proliferates in confined and moist feet.
  • Fungal nail infections are also known to cause foot odor. In fact, one of the early signs of fungal infections is smelly feet.

Here are a few effective remedies:

  • Keeping your feet clean and dry is important to avoid foot odor. Antiseptic soaps prevent bacteria.
  • Wearing airy socks reduces sweat and ultimately reduces odors. Therefore avoid synthetic socks.
  • Spraying your shoes and insoles with disinfectants or surgical spirit also helps in killing bacteria.
  • Soaking feet in a mixture that is two-thirds water and one-third vinegar is effective in eliminating fungi. However, this remedy is strictly not advised in case of cuts or rashes on the skin.
  • Using antiperspirants on your feet also reduces the amount of sweat produced by your feet.

If your smelly feet condition persists, you should consult our board-certified podiatrists, Dr. Debra B. Manheim at Step By Step Family Foot Care, to identify the root cause of the issue and accordingly get the right treatment.

We are experienced in treating a vast number of foot and ankle related problems including bone and joint issues, toenail and skin infections, injuries, sprains, bunions, hammertoes, and more. Contact us or visit our Parsippany office for complete and reliable solutions.