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Things You Need To Know About Flat Feet

Feet come in all shapes and sizes. If you have a very low arch or no arch at all when you stand, you have what is called a flat foot, also known as pes planus in the medical world. But you’re not alone! About 30% of the population live with this postural deformity.

Flat feet can be caused by a number of different reasons including, excessive pronation (the motion of your foot rolling in towards its arches when walking), having a naturally flexible or hypermobile foot, damage by trauma, damage by disease, and genetics. People with flat feet often complain of fatigue, arch strain, calf cramps, shin splints, heel pain, and pain at the balls of their feet. Although flat feet are usually permanent, there are ways to treat the symptoms and manage the condition to prevent future problems.

Treatment for Flat Feet

Custom foot orthotics

Foot above custom orthotics

If you have flat feet, talk to your chiropodist about custom foot orthotics and if you may be a good candidate for them.

Custom foot orthotics help to position your foot in a more optimal alignment, allowing for better support, stability, and balance between the muscles that contribute to its dynamic movements. They can be made to control pronation in the foot and reduce stress, while maintaining proper mobility in the foot. They are removable insoles made custom to your foot and your foot’s needs.

Orthopedic Footwear

Feet in orthopaedic footwear from Birkenstocks

Wearing better footwear can also help to manage your flat feet. Depending on the severity of your flat foot, you may benefit from an orthopedic shoe, which is designed with certain characteristics that make them different from everyday footwear.

For instance, the shoe may have a firm heel counter, increased torsional stability, built in arch support, and come in a variety of widths to accommodate a wider foot. Orthopedic shoes work to support the foot’s structure and mechanics by improving mobility and stability, as well as providing a comfortable fit.

Physical Therapy

Woman with physical therapist using resistance band

With a flat foot, muscle balance is disturbed due to excessive pronation and a low arch profile.

The tendons that run along the arch become stretched and weakened while the opposing muscles on the outside of the foot become shortened and tight. This usually worsens over time. Physical therapy such as foot and ankle exercises can help to strengthen and stretch targeted muscle groups. See our blog post on Daily Feet Exercises for more information on exercises you can try to keep your feet strong and healthy.

Taping is another mode of physical therapy that may be used to help manage your symptoms associated with flat feet. It involves placing strips of athletic tape on your body in specific directions to help control pronation and support your joints, muscles, and tendons.

If you or a loved one has flat feet, book an appointment with one of our Licensed Chiropodists for a one on one consultation.

Call Feet First Clinic today!

At home Sprained Ankle & Foot Exercises

With the New Year many flock to the gyms or get their resolutions ready. Why not take 10 minutes out of your day to start taking care of your feet as well.

It has been proven that foot exercises help increase mobility, prevent injury, increase circulation and resolve many foot issues.

Here are some exercises you can do at home:

Heel raise and toe curls

Toe raises and curls

Start in a seated position barefoot, raise your legs on your toes and hold for 10 seconds. With your toes weight bearing, curl your toes as if you are gripping the floor and repeat 5-10 times, holding for 10 seconds.

Toe splay and crunch

Toe splay

In a seated position barefoot, balance your feet on your heels and spay your toes for 10 seconds and then grip, like creating a fist with your toes. Repeat 5-10 times on each foot.

Scrunching towel on floor with toes

Towel pick up

Barefoot again, throw a towel on the ground and start gripping and releasing the towel with your toes until it is bunched up underneath your feet. Next, use your toes to straighten the towel. Repeat 5-10 times.

sand-walking

Sand walking

Find a carpeted area in your house and walk around barefoot trying to grip the floor with every step and feel the surface throughout your whole foot. Be mindful of gripping the ground and pushing off with force at your big toe. If you don’t have any carpet around your house, then walk around barefoot but try to make as little sound as possible when walking. Silent walking allows your foot to grip the ground with full force and transfers energy through every step (same as sand walking).

Ankle rolling

Ankle rolling

This can be done at a desk, while watching tv or before bed. Raise your legs so your feet are not touching the ground and roll your ankles 10 times clockwise and 10 times counterclockwise. This exercise helps promote circulation and prevent limitation at the ankle ligaments and muscles of the foot.

Ankle spellingAnkle spelling

With your leg raised and your foot pointed, spell out your full name with one leg and then the next. The movement should be centred around your ankle. Again, this helps improve flexibility and circulation at the ankle.

Calf stretch by dropping and lifting heel on the edge of stairsCalf stretches

Stretching out your calves is a very important exercise as it helps loosen up your posterior compartment of your leg which is also attached to the bottom of your foot. These exercises include using a rubber band around the bottom of your foot and keeping your leg straight while pulling on the band. Another exercise is standing at the edge of stairs and dropping your heels.

Heel raisesHeel raises

While barefoot, stand flat on the ground and raise your heels so you are standing on the tips of your toes. Drop your heels and repeat this exercise 5-10 times and hold the last one for 10 seconds. You can work your way up to doing single heel raises – standing on one leg and raising your heels.

Alternate toe raisesToe raises

This is the ultimate toe-yoga move, often times called the Sun-salutation for your toes. With your bare feet firmly planted on the ground, raise just your big toe up (giving thumbs up) and keep your lesser toes firmly planted on the ground. Hold for 10 seconds. Then reverse, keeping your big toe firmly planted on the ground, and raise your lesser toes. Don’t worry if you can’t get this right away, sometimes it takes a little practice or even using your hands to help.

New Foot Care Routine

What better way to start off the new year right than by getting some new self care routines. Here are some tips on new foot routines to get you feeling your best:

Start off with a foot soak

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Gehwol Fusskraft Herbal Bath

Foot soaks are known to soothe muscles, hydrate your skin, and relax sore feet. Gehwol Fusskraft Herbal Bath has natural herbal extracts such as rosemary, mountain pine, lavender and high levels of urea which helps alleviate a lot of foot problems. This herbal foot soak ensures that calluses will be softened and strong odours will be eliminated.

An alternative but equally effective product is the Gehwol Bath Salts with rosemary extract which thoroughly cleanse your skin, strengthen your skin and improve circulation.

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Gehwol Bath Salts

Exfoliate

After a good 15 minute foot soak, take your favourite pumice stone or foot scrub and exfoliate and polish your feet, especially the heels. Exfoliating your feet keeps them healthy by removing all of the dead skin. Dead skin can form calluses, build up bacteria and can clog pores. When dead skin accumulates along with a lack of proper hydration, you run a higher risk of getting cracks in your skin which create an opening for bacteria and fungus.

Clip your toenails

After you have dried off your feet, it’s time to give your toenails a trim. Always cut your nails straight across and leave the sides a little longer to prevent ingrown toenails. If longer sides irritate your nearby toes, check the width of your shoes or round them with a file. If you have any issues with ingrown toenails or have a hard time reaching your feet, come and visit Feet First to see one of our Chiropodists to get a medical pedicure.

Moisturize

The best way to finish off an at home pedicure is to moisturize with a high end moisturizer. Gehwol products are designed for the well-being of your feet. Each Gehwol product has high levels of urea which is a natural moisture retaining compound found in our skin. Gehwol Fusskraft Hydrolipid cream is excellent for daily use – it absorbs quickly into the skin and keeps your feet hydrated all day. Gehwol salve for cracked heels is an excellent evening cream especially for problematic dry heels. Gehwol soft feet cream milk and honey is perfect after a foot soak because it contains essential oils that quickly absorb into your skin. Daily moisturizing is necessary especially during the winter months when our skin experiences excessive dehydration.

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Gehwol Fusskraft Hydrolipid

Socks

According to the National Sleep Foundation, keeping your feet warm can help widen your blood vessels which helps with circulation and prepares your brain for sleep. The best socks for sleeping are loose in fit and soft in material. Microfiber and Merino wool socks are soft and breathable so they help prevent sweaty feet. Cashmere socks are also excellent for sleeping in because of their high breathability and softness. Be sure to change your socks daily and to keep your feet clean and dry to help prevent bacteria and fungus build up.

Air out your shoes

Before you go to sleep, take out your insoles or orthotics and let them dry. Better yet, spray them with Gehwol shoe and foot deodorizing spray which helps eliminate odour causing bacteria and fungus. Shoes and orthotics can also be cleaned with soap and water without causing any damage. Never place your shoes or orthotics in the washing machine as it can destroy the EVA material.

These new foot routines can be applied on a daily basis or at least 1-2 times a week.

If you are experiencing any issues or concerns with your feet, then come visit us at Feet First Clinic.

Keeping Your Feet Safe at Work

Whether you work in an office or on a construction site, you are always at risk of hurting yourself; especially your feet.

If your job requires you to work with heavy items and machinery, you never know when something will be dropped or rolled over your toes. Similarly, if your work requires you to stand for long periods, you can end up doing some serious damage to your feet.

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Instead of living with the aches and pains, you should make use of this list of effective (and simple) tips that our team at Feet First Clinic has put together.

For those that aren’t familiar with our services, we are a team of foot care specialists that offer comprehensive foot care and high-quality products.

To learn more about how you can protect your feet at work, continue reading.

Avoid Standing for Long Periods

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Many people know that sitting for a long time can be bad for your physical health. However, standing for too long is no better.

When you stand for a long period, you’re putting a lot of pressure on your feet. In turn, this puts a lot of strain on your body and can eventually lead to conditions like cracked heels. This can make standing even more painful and cause your feet to bleed.

Thankfully, there is a solution for this problem — people that want to speed up the healing process and prevent future cracks can add these activities to their foot care routines:

  • Moisturizing
  • Soaking
  • Resting your feet regularly

Invest in High-Quality Custom Made Orthotics

If you suffer from pain caused by foot deformities like bunions or hammertoes, you need to purchase a pair of top-notch orthotics.

Orthotics are made to reduce the pain felt in the lower body and relieve tension in high-pressure areas. Not to mention, orthotics can be customized to meet your unique and specific needs.

If you want something simple and effective, you should consider purchasing a pair of Superfeet insoles. This variety of insole offers a universal fit that can be just as effective as custom orthotics (in mild cases).

Superfeet makes a wide variety of insoles, all of which focus on different activities. If you want something that will make your workday less painful, you need a pair of Superfeet orange insoles. These insoles are specially designed for working and hiking, giving them the ability to support your feet throughout the day.

Wear Compression Stockings

Do your feet always feel cold? This may be due to poor circulation in your feet. There are several things that can cause poor circulation.

Some examples include:

  • Smoking tobacco
  • Standing for too long
  • Sitting for too long
  • Lack of exercise
  • Poor diet
  • Type 2 diabetes

To combat poor circulation, you need to purchase a pair of compression stockings. These garments apply pressure to your lower legs. This stimulates blood flow and increases circulation in the lower half of your body.

Aside from improving circulation, compression stockings can also help you deal with pain and decrease swelling.

Book an appointment with us.

Don’t forget to take care of your feet!

Custom Made Orthotics: What to Expect on Your First Appointment

You have been recommended by your friend, family member, colleague, doctor, or other health care provider to use custom foot orthotics for your ongoing foot pain. What are the next steps? Who do you book an appointment with? What will the appointment entail and what do you have to prepare?

Continue reading this article to find out all you need to know about custom foot orthotics and how to be properly assessed for them.

What is a custom foot orthotic?

Custom running orthoticA custom foot orthotic is a device derived from a three-dimensional representation of a person’s foot and also made of suitable materials with regard to the individual’s condition. It is made specifically to address structural or functional foot conditions that lead to faulty foot mechanics and abnormal gait patterns by providing support, stability, and balance. It is a removable device that can be transferred between shoes.

Who do I see for a custom foot orthotic?

A doctor, chiropodist, or podiatrist

A doctor, chiropodist, or podiatrist can write a prescription for custom foot orthotics.

Once you have a prescription, you must book an appointment with a chiropodist or podiatrist to be assessed for your foot concern. At this appointment, the provider will determine if a custom foot orthotic device would be beneficial to your situation.

What should I expect at an appointment with a Licensed Chiropodist?

A chiropodist with patient at a custom orthotic appointment

The appointment will start with a review of your past medical history and the history of your present illness/condition.

The chiropodist will ask a number of different questions including any medications you are currently taking, allergies, symptoms revolving your current issue, occupation, activities, and footwear choices. It is a good idea to bring a list of medications if you cannot remember all of them and a couple of shoes you frequently wear.

You will then be examined. The chiropodist will perform a biomechanical assessment and gait analysis to assess the range of motion in the joints of the foot and lower limb as well as the presence of structural and/or functional abnormalities and their compensations. You should expect your chiropodist to be hands on and very observational during this portion of the visit.

After the assessment, the chiropodist will explain his or her findings and the treatment options available to you, including whether or not custom foot orthotics will address your specific needs.

If a custom foot orthotic is recommended and you, as the patient, agrees with this treatment plan, you will then be casted.

Casting involves creating a three-dimensional mould of your foot using plaster of paris, an STS slipper sock, or a laser scanner while in non-weight bearing position.

Once casted, this marks the end of your appointment. The moulds of your feet will be used to make the custom foot orthotics from scratch.

Manufacturing time usually takes at least a week, at which point you will be contacted to attend a fitting appointment to pick up the orthotics.

At your fitting appointment, your provider will ensure the orthotics fit properly into your shoes and do not impose any immediate discomfort. You will also be given instructions on how to break in the devices and educated on signs that may suggest the orthotics are not working properly. Your provider should be able to adjust or modify the orthotics should any problems arise.

If you would like to book an appointment with a Licensed Chiropodist to be assessed for custom foot orthotics.

Call Feet First Clinic today!

10 Common Foot Facts That All People Should Know

Goodbye 2019 and hello 2020!

The start of a new decade has many of us looking forward to new beginnings, new adventures, and new goals. One goal in particular you may want to think about adding to your New Year’s resolutions is keeping your feet healthy and happy this year. Your feet work hard to support your body weight and take you wherever you want or need to go throughout the day, yet they are easily the most neglected part of the human body. Begin the year off right by making some changes, starting with educating yourself and building simple habits to take care of your feet.

Here are 10 simple facts about feet that all people should know.

  • Each foot contains 26 bones, 33 joints, and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments. You don’t have to remember the specifics, but the takeaway is to know that many structural elements come together to hold the foot together and allow it to move in various ways.foot
  • The most common ailments of the foot include ankle sprains, corns, calluses, nail problems, and plantar fasciitis.
  • Wearing properly fitted footwear is very important to your foot health. If you are unsure of your size, have your feet measured before purchasing shoes. In addition, always try them on. Make sure to leave 1 inch or about a finger’s width between the longest toe and end of shoe.
  • To expand on the previous point, wear shoes that resemble the general shape of your foot. Avoid shoes with a narrow and pointed toe box, especially if you have bunions. Keep in mind, there are shoe companies that make shoes of differing widths in addition to various lengths.
  • Wearing heels can shorten or tighten your calf muscle. A tight calf can lead to Achilles’ tendonitis or ankle equinus.
  • If your feet are well-aligned, your toes will point straight ahead when you are walking. The first point of contact is your heel, then the outside border of your foot, then the ball of your foot, and finally the big toe.
  • A custom foot orthotic can help to support, stabilize, and balance the foot, ultimately improving foot alignment and gait patterns. It is recommended to replace an orthotic every 2-3 years.
  • Wash your feet daily and dry well in between the toes. Finish with daily applications of a urea-based moisturizer. This simple practice helps to reduce bacterial and fungal load and keep the skin’s integrity at its best. The skin is your first line defense against infections.foot care
  • Trim your toenails straight across and not too short. This helps to reduce risk of breaks in the nail as well as ingrown toenails.
  • There are approximately 250,000 sweat glands in the feet and on average, they excrete around 1 cup of moisture in one day. Wearing socks made of natural fibers like cotton and wool instead of synthetic materials will help to create a more breathable environment.feet

Start taking care of your feet and book an appointment with one of our Licensed Chiropodists, call Feet First Clinic today!

How To Protect Your Feet This Winter

Winter can be the time of year when your feet are hit hardest. Dry skin, wet shoes, frostbite, sweaty feet: all foot issues and conditions that seem synonymous with winter.

As temperatures drop and we head into cold(er) conditions, you’ll want to know how to protect your feet this winter.

Below, we break down some of the most important areas in this winter foot guide.

Keep Your Feet Warm

This tip is no surprise. Frigid temperatures mean a frostbite factor.

Frostbite is an injury caused by freezing of the skin and underlying tissues. Your toes are particularly susceptible to frostbite, which begins when your skin becomes cold and red, then numb, then hard and pale.

The numbness stage can be of particular concern, because you may not know the severity of the frostbite. The injury starts out as frostnip, followed by superficial frostbite, and then deep frostbite, the most severe of the three stages.

To prevent frostbite from occurring, taking the following precautions:

  • Wear moisture-wicking socks that fit correctly, and have insulation
  • Change out wet socks as soon as possible
  • Watch for signs of frostbite like red skin, or numbness
  • Keep moving: encourage blood flow to the area

For more on frostbite prevention, and to ensure your feet are warm this winter, check out our complete winter foot guide.

Dry Your Shoes To Protect Your Feet This Winter

Do yourself a favour and ensure your shoes are dry before each use.

Not only will it extend the life of your shoes, you’ll be less prone to the foot conditions that come with wet feet. Plus, wearing wet shoes for extended periods of time can permanently alter the sizing of the shoe, making them bigger than intended.

If your shoes do become wet, remove the insoles and leave them in a well-ventilated area. Keeping your shoes in your bag, closet, or in dark, moist areas will mean a longer drying time. There are also heated shoe racks that quicken the drying process; they can be a great investment if you consistently find your shoes don’t have adequate time between use.

Keep Your Feet (Not Skin) Dry

Did you know that sweat glands are more concentrated on your feet than in any other part of the body? On a given day, thanks to the roughly 250,000 sweat glands, your feet can produce up to one cup of sweat. No wonder moisture can linger.

Even in the winter, your feet sweat. To keep your feet dry, invest in moisture-wicking socks. In essence, these type of socks absorb and bring moisture away from your feet. For a complete list of recommendations, check out our list of best socks for your feet that won’t break the bank.

Socks are only part of the equation in the battle against winter elements. Your primary source of defence is your footwear. And not all shoes are designed for winter. Avoid breathable shoes as they won’t be able to protect your feet from the wind. Plus, slush, ice and snow can more easily penetrate your shoe’s outer material and waterlog your socks.

For a full list of brands we carry in-store for your footwear needs, read about the products we offer.

Soften Your Skin

Winter is prime time for dry skin, which occurs when your feet aren’t retaining enough moisture.

According to Harvard Medical School, winter poses a special problem because humidity is low both outdoors and indoors, and the water content of the epidermis (the outermost layer of skin) tends to reflect the level of humidity around it. Further, dry skin becomes much more common with age.

By moisturizing your skin, you can help prevent calluses, blisters, and cracked heels. Skin moisturizers – mixed with other preventative measures like reducing the temperature of the water you bathe in, reducing showers to once daily, and use a humidifier in the winter – is a good start. You can use petroleum jelly or mainstream brands.

Fend Off Feisty Fungus

With harsh winter elements comes added exposure to moisture.

Certain fungi thrive in dark, moist places, making your feet a prime area. You could be at an increased risk of:

As we’ve previously written, dermatophyte fungi thrive in dark, moist areas and feed on keratin – a primary component of the epidermis (the outer layer of human skin). This means that our feet, which spend most of the day bound up in socks and shoes, present an ideal environment for the proliferation of a fungal infection. Consequently, one in 10 people have athlete’s foot.

In order to help prevent these types of foot conditions and protect your feet this winter, swap out wet socks for dry ones – remember that fungi thrive in moist areas – and wear winter-tough boots – like Sorels – when possible in the winter. Other common preventative measures include trimming your toenails, thoroughly drying your feet, and wearing shoes when in common areas like the gym.

For proper winter footwear and socks, visit our Toronto Foot Clinic on Monday-Friday between 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Get Your Feet Measured This Winter

There are a slew of problems that arise from ill-fitting shoes. For example, black toenails, pinched-nerve pain, bunions, blisters, corns and calluses can all of a result of shoes that are either too big or too small.

Addressing problems with your feet is essential for your entire body. In fact, the health of your feet can directly affect your posture.

In fact, eight out of 10 people have ill-fitting shoes. At Feet First Clinic, we offer every customer a comprehensive footwear assessment free of charge to ensure that you invest in the healthiest footwear for your unique feet.

Our footwear specialists and chiropodists will help match your foot shape, structure, and alignment to specific shoes and footwear features that answer to your corrective, supportive, or accommodative needs.

If you’re in Toronto, come on in and visit us for an in-person assessment.

Here’s a complete guide to picking the correct footwear to better protect your feet this winter.

Visit a Professional

Feet First Clinic has some of the best chiropodists in Toronto — we specialize in foot care treatments and products like custom made orthotics, orthopedic footwear, accessories and much more.

Read about what you can expect from your first visit to Feet First Clinic.

Things to do Before New Year

With only a few days before the New Year, here are some helpful tips to start off the New Year right. 

Declutter

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The key to decluttering is to start off small and simple!

Label 4 boxes:

  • Donations
  • Keep
  • Re-locate or
  • Garbage

Take 5 minutes a day and pick one room in the house to gather items for each box. By the end of the week, you should have enough items to donate, reorganize or throw out.

Donating clothing and shoes is always a first step for decluttering. If you are unsure how often you wear certain clothing, then start off by hanging all of your clothes in one direction and when you wear them and put them back, hang them in the opposite direction. By the end of the week, keep all of your clothes that you wear often in one part of your closet and sort through the ones that are facing the “unworn” direction. If you give away an item each day then by the end of the year you have given away 365 items.

Donate Shoes

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Organizations such as Soles4Souls are helping underprivileged people with proper footwear. Without shoes, people are exposed to the elements and can be infected with infectious diseases, parasites and are more likely to experience trauma to their lower limb. Also, children are also expected to wear uniforms and have proper footwear for schools.

Finally, wearing footwear restores a lot of dignity for many underprivileged people living in harsh conditions. Soles4Souls accepts new and gently-worn shoes to help individuals start and sustain small businesses so they may feed and support their families.

Feet First Clinic has partnered with Soles4Souls for many years so you can drop off any new or gently used shoes to our clinic.

Two-Ten Foundation is a Non-Profit foundation is dedicated to assisting members of the Canadian footwear industry with shoe drives, fundraisers and special events. This organization assists Canadians in need by helping to fit them with proper footwear for their jobs, lifestyles or education.

Exercise

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Exercise is important for not only overall physical health but also for mental health. After all of those Holiday calories, it is important to get back into your workout routine or start the new year right by exercising right.

Cardiovascular health is important for maintaining your heart strength and circulation. Common cardio exercises are brisk walking, running, cycling, swimming, rowing and cross-country skiing. If you add 30 minutes of brisk walking a day, you can burn about 150 calories a day. The calorie count is amplified with more rigorous exercise. Maintaining a healthy weight and diet will help prevent or limit foot issues such as

Enjoy the holidays but be sure to get back into a healthy and active lifestyle with the New Year!

Check your old running shoes for any excessive wear pattern or better yet start off the New Year with a new pair of ASICS or Saucony from Feet First Clinic.

Also, if you are experiencing any foot issues which are preventing you from walking or running properly, visit Feet First Clinic and see one of our Chiropodists to get you feeling your best.

Celebrating Holidays with Stress-free Feet

Ah, the holidays. Such a magical time of year. Whether you are planning to ski down the slopes of Blue Mountain, raid the malls for last minute shopping, dance the night away at your work holiday party, or perhaps even escape the winter altogether and head off to a warmer destination, don’t forget to make the right choices for your feet this holiday season. Show your feet some love and don’t let them stop you from finishing the year strong and ready for what’s to come.

Here is a list of simple things to help you celebrate the holidays this year with stress-free, healthy feet.

Winter boot

Wear proper shoes

Wearing the right shoes for your feet as well as for the occasion is a simple yet effective way to reduce discomfort and reduce risk of injury. If you plan to walk outside in the snow, wear warm, waterproof winter boots. If you plan to go hiking, wear a proper hiking shoe with ankle and foot stability as well as good traction at the sole.

In general, a good shoe will have a cushioned outer sole, adequate torsional stability, a wide enough toe box, and some arch support. Try to avoid wearing heels higher than 2 inches and shoes that are completely flat as they provide little to no support.

Orthotic

Wear custom foot orthotics

If you experience foot pain of any kind, get your feet assessed by a Licensed Chiropodist. Your foot pain may be caused by faulty foot mechanics and abnormal gait patterns that can be managed and corrected with custom foot orthotics.

Custom foot orthotics work to prevent abnormal movements during gait to optimize the alignment of the joints in your foot and lower limb and allow for joint stability, balance, and better function.

Compression stocking

Wear compression stockings

Do you experience swollen, tired, achy legs near the end of the day or after extended periods of standing or sitting? If you do, talk to your doctor about compression stockings and if they are right for you.

Compression stockings are medical grade products that help to circulate your blood back to your heart and can be effective in controlling swollen legs and feet, varicose veins, and conditions such as chronic venous insufficiency.

Moisturize

The winter season can be extremely drying to the skin, especially the skin on your feet. Combat dry skin with a good moisturizer that contains 10% to 25% urea.

Urea is an organic compound that works to exfoliate the skin to allow for better product penetration as well as softens and hydrates the skin as it attracts and holds onto water.

End the year of 2019 the right way by practicing healthy habits for your feet.

From the team at Feet First Clinic, we wish a warm and happy holiday!

We’ll see you in 2020!

Best Gifts for Your Feet

For how reliant we are on our feet, they’re often neglected. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Why not treat yourself, or someone else, with gifts for your feet?

You can treat your feet right with the proper care, whether that’s through investing in quality footwear, preventative measures, or just overall good habits. For Christmas, as well as for any other time of year when you’re gifting, consider these gifts for your feet.

Body Glide

One of the keys to healthy feet is acting on and taking certain preventative measures to reduce problems in the first place. One such example is the use of Body Glide, which can help reduce the chance of blisters. The two core reasons for why you might experience blisters are friction and moisture.

Most blisters on your feet are friction blisters, which result from socks or shoes excessively rubbing against the skin of your feet. The bubbles that form are natural cushions that your body produces in order to create a protective barrier between the irritated area of skin and friction-causing object.

Body Glide repels water and moisture, as well as provides a lubricant for your skin to reduce friction.

By applying Body Glide to your feet, you can keep blisters at bay.

Saucony Ride ISO 2

The Ride ISO 2 is Saucony’s most plush and cushioned running shoe making it ideal for running on asphalt and concrete sidewalks. That’s a reality for us Canadians in the wintertime as softer surfaces are hard to come by.

To protect your feet from common injuries, it’s vital to choose a running shoe that’s right for your body and gait. The Ride ISO 2 is great for runners who underpronate (known as supination). This is because the brunt of the impact is borne by the outer edge of your shoe. So, the Ride ISO 2 has lots of foam underfoot to reduce impact. In turn, that means less soreness in your knees, shins, and feet.

Asics Gel-Kayano 26

The Asics Gel-Kayano 26 is the brand’s most supportive and responsive. The Gel-Kayano 26 is a stability shoe so it’s best for overpronators and those who require significant support.

With adjusted heel geometry and cushioning sculpted at an incline, the Gel-Kayano 26 puts less stress on your feet when you pronate. Asics says that its midsole technology combines two different density materials to reduce the risk of flat feet and bunions.

For a complete lineup of Asics and Saucony running shoes, come visit the clinic to get your shoes properly fitted.

Blister Medical Kit

For those in your circle who consistently get blisters, consider gifting them a kit to combat the problem. Most blister medical kits contain moleskins, alcohol pads and antiseptic wipes to treat the area and provide protection from further chafing while the blister heals.

To avoid additional friction that may further aggravate the inflamed area, use an adhesive bandage or blister pad, which is available at our Toronto foot clinic. Read more about how to properly treat blisters.

Sorel Men’s Caribou Men’s Boot

Winter is upon us and conditions in Canada can be brutal between December-February. With snow accumulating, temperatures dropping, and conditions being volatile, it’s essential to have footwear fit for the season, and for your feet. The Sorel Men’s Caribou Boot is best for heavy snow and features a waterproof upper, keeping moisture away from your feet and reducing the risk of foot problems.

The boot also features a removable liner so you can wash and reduce the build-up of sweat and bacteria over time. The Caribou Boot is rated to a bone-chilling -40 C.

In order to pick the correct footwear this winter, read our tips on how to find the pair that’s right for you.

Sorel Joan of Arctic NEXT Women’s Boot

While men have the Sorel Caribou Boot, women can turn to the Sorel Joan of Arctic Next Women’s Boot. The Joan of Arctic Next Boot is great for heavy rain, light snow, and heavy snow as it’s made for the harsh Canadian winters.

One of the worst feelings is having water-logged boots, especially when your feet get wet and temperatures drop. Fortunately, with a microfleece lining and sealed waterproof seams, your feet will stay dry and healthy this winter with these boots.

Visit our clinic for a full lineup of Sorel products and ensure you choose boots with the proper fit by trying them on in-person with the help of one of our professionals.

Darn Tough Vertex 1/4 Ultra-Light socks

Socks are absolutely crucial for the health of your feet. It’s important to find the right pair to reduce the risk of blisters, odour, and other foot problems.

Darn Tough are some of the longest-lasting and most durable socks on the market. The ¼ Ultra-Light socks are an ideal length to cover any exposed areas during the winter between your shoes and your pants if you exercise outdoors. Best of all, these socks are tough enough for winters and because of its mix of merino wool, nylon and lycra, they’re cool enough to wear in the summer too.

For more on socks that won’t break the bank, check out a complete rundown of some options from an earlier blog post.

Roll Recovery R8 Roller

The Roll Recovery R8 Roller puts what you thought of traditional massage rollers to the side with its unique design.

The deep tissue massage tool is a handheld device that you can use to roll out your muscles. Best of all, there’s no having to get onto the ground like with a traditional foam roller. Traditionally, people have had to use their own force – using bodyweight – to foam roll their muscles. With the Roll Recovery R8 Roller, the force is built into the product itself. With the R8 Roller, you roll out your muscles by placing the devices onto your legs (the pressure will automatically be applied) and moving back and forth over hot spots or trouble areas. This can be done while lying down, sitting, or even standing.

Foam rolling is particularly vital in reducing foot problems. You can address soreness and tightness in areas that may ultimately lead to lower leg problems. Generally, foam rolling can be beneficial because it improves blood flow, reduces inflammation and breaks up muscle adhesions.

For more information, and for a selection of these products and other gifts for your feet, book an appointment at Feet First Clinic or stop by in-person.

We’re open six days a week and you do not need a referral to visit the clinic.