Showing posts with label Legs Health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Legs Health. Show all posts

Flat Shoes may be damaging your Feet

If you are facing foot pain, heel pain or back pain from past few months or years, then it might be due to your footwear. Usually people ignore the fact and blame their sitting posture or physical work for foot pain or back pain. Arch support and cushioning is the basic necessity of a good footwear. Flat shoes or slippers lack these features and result in health consequences. Some of the flat footwear look cheerful and also cost less, which attract people to use them. Here our ignorance about footwear costs us.

Before you know about damaging effect of flat footwear, you must know some facts about feet to make you aware of their importance.

  • Our feet has got more that 25% of bones in our body, 52 to be precise.
  • During the whole day our feet bear the weight equivalent to the weight of a truck loaded with cement.
  • The arch of the foot distributes the weight to the complete foot and give us proper push to walk and run as well.
  • Muscles and tissues in our feet act as a shock absorber and help us in walking on any type of surface.
  • It is a brilliant example of natural engineering as these bones are put into perfect alignment to bear our weight and make us walk, run, jump and climb.
  • You may feel that climbing upstairs and coming downstairs is an easy task, but most of the animals can't do that perfectly. We the humans are only being that can do it perfectly with two legs without worrying about balance.

How does flat shoes damage your feet ?

  • Flat shoes, sandals and flip flips usually don't provide appropriate support to sole of feet, especially the arch.
  • Lack of shock absorption is another basic reason behind the damage to feet.
  • Flat shoes are not bad, if they have cushioned base and shaped to support the arches of your feet.
  • Plantar fasciitis, an inflammation and tear in the tissues at the base of feet, is a common health issue related to bad or flat footwear.
  • If your flats are tight at toes, then they don't let your foot distribute your weight equally and make your foot bones out of alignment, which results in interior foot injury and nerve inflammation. 

30% people have flat feet due to genetic reasons, but the condition can get worse by wearing bad footwear.
Sudden increase in weight may also contribute to feet and back problems. 

Health of our legs and our overall health are heavily interconnected. Know More about this interconnection. High heels are also equally damaging for your feet. An appropriate height of heel is recommended for comfortable and healthy footwear.
No arch support, no fastening strap or laces and no shock-absorbing material are the basic reason developing feet and back problems. 
Your shoes play an important role in your life, but we ignore their importance and don't even provide proper footwear to bear our own weight. Ignorance is the basic reason behind a number of health conditions. Be aware and never wear flat shoes.

Plantar Fasciitis : The pain in the Heel

Plantar Fasciitis is often diagnosed by pain in heel, especially when you wake up in the morning or when when you get up after having some rest. However this pain reduces within an hour, but again comes back after taking some rest. Previously experts used to think that it is due to bony growths called heel spurs, but now they know that heel spurs occur as a side effect of untreated Plantar Fasciitis.

What is Plantar Fasciitis ?

Plantar Fasciitis is pain due to tiny tears in Plantar Fascia. Plantar Fascia is a thick band of tissues reaching from heel to your toes, which acts as a shock-absorbing bowstring supporting the arch in your foot. Tiny tears in it occur due to various reasons and it may result in pain, especially when you get up after several hours of rest. Around 10% population faces this type of pain in heel at least once in a lifetime, which makes it a common health issue. Women are more prone to this disease, but it can also occur in men. It is a common problem among athletes, and most of the athletic foot injuries account for Plantar Fasciitis.
Our foot contains 25% of all bones in body, i.e. 52 to be precise. These bones give proper support to arch of the foot to bear the body weight in different positions and do the pushing movement. If some of these bones go out of alignment due to some reason, then it may result in Plantar Fasciitis.

What causes Plantar Fasciitis ?

Several hours of stress on foot without any break may result in tiny tears in Plantar Fascia, which is the most common reason behind Plantar Fasciitis. Some common causes of Plantar Fasciitis are:

  • Over stretching of foot
  • Unusual workload on foot
  • High-heeled shoes
  • Wearing worn-out shoes
  • Flat-foot people are more prone.
  • Hours of continuous driving can also result in Plantar Fasciitis, as there you need to continuously push the pedals.
  • Sudden weight gain is also associated with Plantar Fasciitis, which makes women more prone to this disease, as pregnancy causes rapid weight gain.
  • Ageing also makes you prone to this disease, as Plantar Fascia becomes rigid. Ageing reduces elasticity of some body tissues and makes them rigid.

Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis

Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis depends on severity of the condition. If the pain is bearable and you can walk easily then it may subside itself within 10 - 15 days. But if the condition worsens and the pain does not go away then you may need to see a medical practitioner or a specialist. In the mean time you may do following treatments at home to get some relief.

  • Rest: Ample amount of rest, even during the day time gives your body the time it needs to heal the micro-injuries.
  • Icing: Apply ice to your heel for at least twenty minutes twice a day. It will reduce the redness and swelling of tissues.
  • Stretching: Simple stretching exercise twice a day improves blood circulation to any tears or micro-injuries in Plantar Fascia, which is must to heal any injury. It also strengthens the muscles and ligaments around it.
  • Support: If the pain is more then heel seats, night splints, heel wraps, or taping can help you by providing more comfort to your heel.
  • Stop wearing improper footwear: If any footwear was the real culprit behind your condition, then you must abandon it before it makes the condition worse.

Good news about Plantar Fasciitis is that 90% cases get resolved with proper treatment within few months.

Plantar Fasciitis Exercises
Most common exercises to treat Plantar Fasciitis include stretching exercises that stretches your feet and calf. You may search for such exercise videos, which may be more beneficial.

Plantar Fasciitis Yoga

  • Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
  • Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana)
  • Thunderbolt Pose (Vajrasana)
  • Hero Pose (Virasana)
  • Warrior Pose I (Virabhadrasana I)
  • Garland Pose (Malasana)

Most of the above mentioned yoga poses gives proper stretch to your foot, leg and calf muscles which makes them a proper yoga to get relief from Plantar Fasciitis. But if you feel uncomfortable in doing any of the above yoga, then it is better not to practice it.

Note: If you are not above 50 and facing Plantar Fasciitis without any sudden weight gain, then it might be due to excess stress on your foot, improper footwear or a combination of both. A proper treatment is must for this medical condition, as if it remains untreated then it may result in knee, hip or back problems.

Your Feet and overall Health are heavily interconnected !

Usually people take care of their whole body ranging from hairs on their head to nails of their toe, but most of us never look under the feet, especially the sole, which is responsible for bearing all the workload throughout the day. Health issues such as back pain that comes with age is often misunderstood as an age related issue while most of the times it occurs due to negligence of feet. Most of us don't even try to wash the sole properly while taking a bath. This negligence often lead to some diseases as we grow. Here will try to put some light on your sole and make you look at them.

Why are our feet so important ?

Our feet bear our weight for most of the day. Even a slight problem in your feet can make you feel paralyzed and incompetent to do anything in proper way. Health of our feet impact our overall health. Our feet not only helps us in burning calories to remain healthy but also supports our whole body structure. Fun fact is that such an important organ is farthest from our heart, so it needs extra care. Till we reach our 30s the heart remains powerful enough to take care of foot. As we grow we not only need to take care of heart but our feet as well. Acupressure is a healing science that tell us how much our feet is connected to our whole being. There are various points in our foot that deals with different parts of body and pressing them can heal several medical conditions.

Some facts about feet health

  • Choose your footwear wisely. It should have ample space for your toe. Heel should never be too high as it can affect your spinal chord and cause back problems as well.
  • Moisture in feet cause serious infections in your feet. So wash them regularly and dry them properly. Moisture due to sweating can also harm them so a good footwear with enough space for air and high quality cotton socks can help you in that.
  • Proper cleaning of your feet is also necessary as it not only removes the dirt and dead skin but also saves you from getting cracks in feet.
  • Choose your footwear wisely. Different footwear should be used for different activities. You can't use a slipper to run on a track. A correct footwear not only makes it comfortable for the activity but also saves your feet from excess pressure and risk injury.
  • Nicotine in Cigarette can decrease blood circulation in your skin by 70%, which is very harmful for your feet. 
  • High sugar content in your diet can harm your feet by causing tissue inflammation. Refined grains and trans fat in junk food also encourages inflammation. Diabetes or high blood sugar can also harm you, so diabetic people need to take extra care of their feet and diet.
  • More weight means more burden on your feet. Try to keep your weight in check by having healthy lifestyle and balanced diet.
  • Peripheral Artery Diseases caused due to buildup of plaque or cholesterol in arteries reduces the blood flow in feet and leads to lack of nutrition for your feet. So take care of your fat / cholesterol level in a timely manner and make the necessary corrections by adjusting your diet and physical activity level.
  • If you use to have cold feet and losing hair on your toes then it is better to get your feet examined.
  • If you use to have heel pain in the morning the it might be due to strain in muscles which may be due to tight shoes, flip flops or some worn out footwear.

Diabetes and feet care

  • Neuropathy occurs in 70% of diabetic people which is responsible for lack of feeling / sensation in your feet or hand due to damage in nerves. It makes it harder to feel the sores and cracks on your feet. Keeping yourself away from diabetes can save you from this condition.
  • Diabetic people should use their elbow to check the temperature of water before taking a bath or going inside a pool, as sometimes the nerve damage makes their hand and feet unable to feel the temperature.
  • Diabetic people should always wear some comfortable foot wear, even inside the house as it saves them from any minor cuts that they can't usually feel.

Next time you go to buy a pair of shoes, keep in your mind to give the best to your feet as they are responsible for your whole being. Don't take your feet as granted. They will lead you for all of your remaining life.

Crossing your legs can cause Health Problems ?

Sitting with crossed legs is not a good habit. There are various reasons to say so. Once your read the details below, you will never sit will your legs crossed.
Note: Here we are talking about crossed legs (not crossing ankles). There is no side effect of crossing ankles.

If you just cross your ankles then its fine, but if you put one of your thighs above the another thigh then you are putting yourself to risk of back pain and some other health issues. However there are some studies that don't agree with the fact that crossing legs causes any health problems.

Some of the common health issues connected to crossing legs are given below.

  • Increased blood pressure: Crossing your legs can temporarily increase yous blood pressure. Due to this reason physicians often suggest you to uncross your legs while measuring your blood pressure. However in most of the cases it happens with those who are already suffering from high blood pressure compared to those who are in perfectly healthy condition.
  • Varicose veins: However some people take it as a myth that vericose veins are caused by crossing legs, but i want you to remain on safer side. Vericose veins is a condition in which veins in lour legs are enlarged and visible through skin easily. It appears like a web of veins on your legs. However some doctors suggest that its a side effect high blood pressure and standing for long durations.  
  • Neck and Back Pain: Our pelvic bones are the main bones that support our spinal cord. When we cross our legs and put one thigh over other, the support for our spinal cord is removed in a way. It puts extra pressure on our neck and middle portion of spinal cord. It leads to pain in neck and back.
  • Temporary Numbness in feet: When we put one leg over other on the knee, it presses the peroneal nerve. Continuous pressing of this nerve cause numbness or temporary paralysis in your feet. If it happens more often to you then its not good for your feet.

Out of the above facts you might have noticed some on your own. So you can get relief from those side effects of crossing legs by completely giving up this sitting posture. If you are unable to give it up completely then its better to keep rotating your sitting posture in every 3 to 5 minutes.

Blood Circulation Problem in Legs Symptoms and Treatment

Our legs carry our weight for whole life, so lets give some precious time of yours for your legs. This article about Blood Circulation Problem in Legs is not just to increase your knowledge about this disease, but to make you understand that your body, especially your legs deserves some of your attention on daily basis to keep themselves healthy for a long life. You can't live a healthy life if your legs are not healthy. If you are a healthy person with no problem in your legs, then you can keep your upper body healthy by jogging or walking on daily basis. But if your legs are not working properly and you can't even walk properly then your complete health will degrade. So lets increase your knowledge about Blood Circulation Problem in Legs and know their symptoms and treatment. 

Blood Circulation Problem in Legs

There are various types of blood circulation problems in legs. Some of them are discussed below with their symptoms and Treatment.

Peripheral Artery Disease of the Legs

It narrows the arteries in the legs and the blood flow to your leg muscles is reduced. It occurs due to atherosclerosis, a condition that hardens and narrows the arteries of whole body. Smoking, high blood pressure and inactivity are the main causes of Peripheral Artery Disease.
Major symptom of Peripheral Artery Disease is pain in Calf, Hip or Thigh even after mild activity.

Intermittent Claudication

Femoral Artery, that takes blood to your leg is either blocked or narrowed in Intermittent Claudication. It causes cramp and pain even after slight walking. Most it occur after 50 years of age. It can occur earlier if you are a chain smoker and diabetic. Sometimes body can find some alternate arteries and enlarge them to provide proper blood supply to leg muscles. It is called collateral circulation. Collateral Circulation takes 6 to 8 weeks to develop and symptoms of Intermittent Claudication are reduced.

Blood Circulation Problem in Legs Symptoms

If following symptoms appear in your legs then you should consult a doctor as it might be due to blood circulation problem in legs.

  • Fatigue or cramping during activity
  • Cramping during inactivity
  • Swelling and achiness
  • Tingling
  • Persistent coldness

There are some more symptoms that indicate that you are prone to blood circulation problem in legs. If you feel any of these symptoms listed below then you should start taking care of your legs.

  • If your toes are red, purple, or blue.
  • If you are feeling hair loss on your legs and feet.
  • If your feet remain excessively cool compared to other body parts.
  • If your feet “fall asleep” easily.
  • If your feet feel better when you hang them over the edge of bed.

Some behaviours that can lead to Blood Circulation Problem in Legs are

  • Tobacco smoking
  • Lack of regular exercise
  • Improper and unhealthy diet
  • Immobility: Sitting or standing in one place for long periods of time

What can you do for your Legs ?

If your legs are healthy, then
  • Running, Walking or Jogging on daily basis.
  • Massage you legs, once a week
  • Massage you foot (5 Min Daily)
  • A Healthy Diet, to give proper nutrition to your legs.

If your legs are unhealthy, then
  • Consult your doctor. It depends on severity of your condition and other aspects like your blood pressure and Heart Health. 

Blood Circulation Problem in Legs Treatment

You should consult a doctor for better help. But you can also practice following things in your daily life.

  • Stop cigarettes smoking.
  • Keep your BP (blood pressure) and cholesterol in a healthy range.
  • Exercise on regular basis.
  • Avoid long periods of immobility. Don't sit for long periods continuously.
  • Elevate your legs. Sitting in a recliner with your legs up can help you in getting some relief from pain.
  • Leg Massagers and Exercisers can be used to stimulate and improve blood circulation.
  • Support hosiery or socks can help you to improve circulation in legs.