Posts for: June, 2014

Take care of overpronation with foot orthotics

By Brandi Schlossberg

Our feet are our faithful servants when it comes to daily movements, ranging from simply standing and walking to running and dancing. Unfortunately, when the function or alignment of one or both feet is impaired, this tends to affect the entire body, and it can result in issues that may affect the ankles, shins, knees, pelvis, back and other regions of the body.

Clearly, the feet play a key role in our overall ability to function and in our body’s overall health, so keeping them healthy and in proper alignment is vital to basic well-being.

When it comes to common issues that may plague the feet, one such condition is overpronation.

To understand overpronation, it may help to first understand that it is normal and even necessary for the feet to pronate, or roll inward, when in contact with the ground. The degree at which the feet roll inward too much is called overpronation, and it is a condition that can cause problems.

Wellness professionals should be on the lookout for overpronation among patients and clients. Whether mild or severe, this condition typically needs to be addressed and corrected as quickly as possible. Fortunately, foot orthotics are a common and effective approach to correcting this condition, as the proper orthotics can support and stabilize the feet so that they do not roll inward to such a great degree.

After being fitted with foot orthotics, the client or patient who overpronates should begin to see some improvement in the issues the condition may have caused. Foot orthotics used to correct overpronation can help alleviate associated problems such as tight muscles, bunions, calluses, knee pain, Achilles tendinits and plantar fasciitis, for example.

A person with mild overpronation may benefit from the use of foot orthotics; however, those people who spend quite a bit of time on their feet, either due to work or fitness pursuits, should be extra cautious when it comes to spotting and correcting the issue.


May 22 is Gout Awareness Day

The Gout & Uric Acid Education Society Provides Education, Introduces Resources through New GoutEducation.org Website

/ PRNewswire / — Entering its 10th year of providing gout education, the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society (GUAES) is amplifying its efforts on May 22 – National Gout Awareness Day – and encouraging gout sufferers to seek immediate and ongoing treatment. Information and resources are available to both the general public and medical professionals through the organization’s new website, found at GoutEducation.org.

Today, gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, yet the vast majority of Americans know almost nothing about it. Research from the Gout & Uric Acid Education Society reveals that three in four Americans don’t recognize what parts of the body gout affects, and more than half are unaware of the potential crippling side effects of gout. Many also do not realize that gout has been linked to serious health issues, including heart disease, kidney disease and diabetes. More alarming, while gout is a serious and debilitating disease that requires lifelong management, just 10 percent of gout sufferers receive needed, ongoing treatment.

As gout incidence continues to climb in the U.S., GUAES remains committed to raising public awareness and to encouraging more gout sufferers to seek treatment – right at their first attack. The new GoutEducation.org website serves as a central location for information on topics ranging from what gout is, to seeking a diagnosis, to strategies for ongoing treatment and management. The website also features a number of patient education resources, including brochures in both English and Spanish, patient fact sheets and videos with guidance and information from physicians and patients.

“People who have gout know that it’s painful, yet far too few are seeking the ongoing treatment that they need to prevent future attacks and subsequent joint damage,” said N. Lawrence Edwards, M.D., a rheumatologist and GUAES chairman. “We hope that the education and resources provided through our website will encourage more sufferers to take the important steps of scheduling routine appointments; getting their uric acid levels checked regularly; and committing to a treatment plan that combines the right medications with dietary and lifestyle changes.”

The new website also includes a portal for medical professionals that provides the most up–to–date guidelines for gout diagnosis and management from the American College of Rheumatology, and features resources that can be shared with patients.


Increasing cases of running injuries reported

 

Swait Jha | May 10, 2014.

 

People taking up healthy choice, but without proper training

In today’s hectic lifestyle, many people have taken up running to stay in shape. Most people are very passionate about their running, but are doing so without the instructions of an experienced trainer, due to which injuries have become commonplace. Most doctors in the city are increasingly getting cases related to orthopaedic and muscular problems.

“The cases have undoubtedly risen in the past few years. We are getting seven to eight patients everyday with injuries related to running. Most common that we see nowadays are runner’s knee, Achilles Tendinitis, hamstring issues, Plantar Fasciitis, Shinsplints, ITBS and stress fracture,” said Dr Nikhil Iyer, orthopaedic and arthroscopic surgeon from Fortis Hospital, Navi Mumbai.

Dr Iyer added that about 40 per cent of running injuries that doctors see are related to knee injuries. Largely referred to as “Runner’s Knee”, Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS) typically flares up during or after long runs, after extended periods of sitting, or while descending hills and stairs.

“Anyone with biomechanical factors who puts extra load on the knee is vulnerable to PFPS. Risk factors include over-pronation and weak quads, hips, or glutes. Everybody needs to make sure that they don’t put extra effort if they have just started running, otherwise it can worsen the situation rather than improving it,” said Dr Iyer.

“Also, we are getting large numbers of cases of Achilles Tendons. It makes up 61 per cent of all running injuries. Runners who dramatically increase training and have tight, weak calves are vulnerable. People will have to understand that there are various bones and muscles in our body that can take a certain amount of pain in a certain way. They require a lot of knowledge before beginning any exercise on their own,” said Dr Iyer.

Plantar Fasciitis, small tears or inflammation of the tendons and ligaments that run from your heel to your toes, is usually the top foot complaint among runners — the pain, which typically feels like a dull ache or bruise along your arch or on the bottom of your heel, is usually worse first thing in the morning.

“Runners with very high or very low arches are vulnerable, because both foot types cause the plantar fascia to be stretched away from the heel bone. Long periods of standing, especially on hard floors without supportive footwear, may exacerbate the problem,” said Dr Iyer.

Dr Iyer suggests that for preventing from getting such injuries, runners must keep a few points in mind. “Don’t ignore pain. A little soreness is okay, but if you notice consistent pain in a muscle or joint that doesn’t get better with rest, see your healthcare provider. Most importantly, before beginning a running routine, talk to a trainer. Warm-up and stretch before running,” he added.


Foot orthotics may help injury in rehabilitation 

By Brandi Schlossberg

When it comes to foot orthotics, the main mission of these supportive devices is to help improve the stability, function and alignment of the feet, ankles, legs, hips and spine.

In other words, by encouraging the proper biomechanical alignment of the feet and ankles, the entire body may benefit from foot orthotics. For this reason, these devices may be quite useful for rehabilitation from injury, particularly an injury that may have affected the function and alignment of the feet and ankles.

However, foot orthotics also may be used to help rehabilitate people who are suffering from an injury to another area of the body, such as a back injury.

For example, a 2013 study published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics compared the use of customized foot orthotics along with standard care to standard care alone in a group of people who were suffering from chronic low back pain following a work related back injury.

The study, “Effect of customized foot orthotics in addition to usual care for the management of chronic low back pain following work related injury,” found that the use of foot orthotics in addition to standard care resulted in lower disability scores and reduced the use of prescribed analgesics for back pain. The study’s authors concluded that the use of foot orthotics along with standard care was more effective than standard care alone.

This is just one example of the ways in which foot orthotics may help people rehabilitate and recover from a variety of injuries that can affect the alignment of the body. From Achilles tendinitis and plantar fasciitis, to low back injury and athletic issues such as turf toe, it appears foot orthotics can play a key role in the rehabilitation of many different conditions.

Of course, it is important to remember that foot orthotics do not typically work alone when it comes to rehabilitation and recovery. Typically, a patient will need to be actively involved in the rehabilitation process. Foot orthotics may be effectively combined with prescribed stretching and strengthening exercises and possibly the use of pain medication, massage and other treatment methods, as well.

 

 

By Mary Macvean | May 8, 2014.

Here’s a new kind of before-meal snack: A little intense exercise might be a good plan for people trying to control their blood sugar.

Researchers call it “exercise snacking,” and say that a brief burst of intense exercise is more effective than a moderate daily 30-minute workout at reducing glucose concentrations in people who are insulin resistant.

 

Their work was published Thursday in the journal of the European Assn. for the Study of Diabetes.

“Sustained hyperglycemia following meals is an important feature of insulin resistance,” researcher Monique Francois, of the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand, said in a statement. “Reducing these post-meal spikes is important for reducing the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and its associated complications.”

The scientists recruited two women and seven men ages 18 to 55; they all had blood tests showing insulin resistance; none were taking diabetes or or heart medication. Their mean body mass index was 36, which is obese. Type 2 diabetes was detected in two of the people during the screening.

Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance are increasing worldwide, and exercise and diet are inexpensive and effective ways to combat them, the researchers said. But, they added, fewer than 10% of Americans and 20% of British adults meet activity recommendations. Many people cite a lack of time as the reason they do not.

So these scientists tried a plan that even the busiest person could slip into the day. The study participants took part in three exercise programs. The meals and timing were controlled.

In one plan, the person did 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise before dinner, walking up an incline. That means the heart rate was at 60% of its maximum.

In the second, the person did six one-minute bursts of incline walking at 90% of maximum heart rate, 30 minutes before a meal. And in the third, the person did six one-minute efforts, alternating resistance training and incline walking 30 minutes before meals.

In the second and third plans, blood sugar was reduced 17% three hours after the meal compared with not exercising before breakfast, and 13% compared with the daily half-hour workout. The effect at lunch was unclear, the researchers said.

Among physical activity advocates, such bursts of exercise are called High Intensity Interval Training. It has, the researchers said, been shown to be an efficient way to improve blood glucose control in people with Type 2 diabetes, and as a way to reduce risk factors for other chronic diseases.

The researchers noted that the 150 minutes a week of exercise routinely recommended leaves plenty of sedentary time over a day, and that inactivity can be harmful. Previous research, they said, has shown that frequent activity sessions can help with waist circumference, blood sugar control and other issues.

 

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times

 

 




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