Next Step: Foot Care In Connecticut

Posts for: February, 2013

New research presented last month at the annual meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America says that shoes being a fashion statement and sign of social status are not a new trends. 

Back as early as the first century, children and infants living in Roman military bases around Europe wore shoes that showed their social status. These itsy-bitsy shoes, some small enough for infants, not only revealed  that their families were part of Roman military life, but that children were dressed to match their parents' place in the social hierarchy. 

Study researcher Elizabeth Greene of the University of Western Ontario says, "The role of dress in expressing status was prominent even for children of the very youngest ages."

Just like children today have to have the latest in clothing, footwear, and accessories in order to be "cool" and "popular" so was it for Roman children. Ancient Roman children of well-to-do families wore more elaborate, decorated shoes than their common counterparts. 

Over 4,000 shoes were found at Vindolanda, a Roman army fort in northern Britain that was occupied from the first to fourth centuries. In every time period of the fort's history children's shoes were found in domestic spaces, official military buildings, and rubbish heaps, Greene said. "We don't even have a period, not even Period 1, where we're free of children's shoes," she said. 

Greene and her colleagues next traced what shoes were found where and found that the decoration of the shoe depended on the location they were found. In the barracks, for example, children's shoes were similar to the common boot of adult soldiers. 

Wooden tablets were found at the site, and researchers now know that Flavius Cerialis, prefect of the Ninth Cohort of the Bavarians, lived in one of the houses around 100 A.D. It is likely that Flavius and his family had something to do with public life around the base, and supporting this idea an elaborate infant shoe was made in the same style as a high-status man's boot. 

The shoe has iron studs on the sole, just like a man's shoe would have. The shoe is made of high quality materials, including leather for the upper sole cut into an intricate fishnet pattern. This would not only show off the workmanship of the item, but the colored socks underneath, another item ancient Romans used to denote status. Even as a baby, the infant would have been shown off at official events and parades. 

Common shoes found at the base were less elaborate. Sixteen children's shoes with partially intact upper sections were found in the barracks, likely from 105 A.D. to 120 A.D. Many were the basic "fell boot" of the Roman army, a simple, high-ankle shoe without decoration. Other shoes found in the base had the Roman's version of Velcro- carbatina. These shoes were worn by men, women, and children and were easily laced and slipped on and off. They could also be accommodating for a growing child, tightened or loosened for the foot.

In the centurion's or officer's quarters, two carbatina shoes with more than the usual detailing were found, supporting the idea that high-ranking parents dressed their children in nicer shoes. 

One shoe found in the barracks did not support this idea. The shoe has little leather, but has decorative triangular tabs and rosette patterns not typically found on a soldier's child's shoe. 

If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.

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Now this is a new one for us.

Wednesday Kelly Osbourne sprained her ankle while avoiding falling into a public toilet. You're probably thinking, "Now what was she drinking?", but supposedly, her foot got stuck.

Osbourne explained via Twitter, "Got my shoe stuck in a bathroom drain. I was faced with spraining my ankle or eaten the toilet. Guess what I picked? I sprained the muscles in my ankle that go up the back of my knee, so it was the boot or crutches!"

The Fashion Police critic added, "With the drain right next to the toilet, and not screwed into the floor properly my heel went through it and got stuck! I just could not bear the thought of my face landing in a public toilet! However, I'm not questioning my decision due to the pain!"

Osbourne has a history of getting injured in weird and wacky places. In July 2012 she was struck in the head by a fellow Delta airlines passenger who was trying to recline her seat. In November 2011 she cracked her head open and kept passing out. In February 2011 she was advised to get foot surgery to correct problems exacerbated by her time on Dancing With the Stars. "They're going to break four bones in my feet and some ligaments. When I saw what was actually involved, I was like, 'No!' I'm putting it off until I become a cripple. There's no way I could do it," Osbourne said.

Wonder how her feet are feeling now...

If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.

Connecticut Foot Care Centers

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A new study, published in the Oncology Nursing Forum, suggests that reflexology, a type of specialized foot massage, may relieve symptoms cancer patients experience. The study was led by Michigan State University's Gwen Wyatt, a professor in the College of Nursing. 

This was the first large scale, randomized study of reflexology as a complement to cancer treatment. "It's always been assumed that it's a nice comfort measure, but to this point we really have not, in a rigorous way, documented the benefits. This is the first step toward moving a complementary therapy from fringe care to mainstream care," said Wyatt.

Reflexology is based on the knowledge that stimulating specific points in the feet can improve the function of corresponding organs, glands, and other parts of the body. "Reflexology comes out of the Chinese tradition and out of Egypt. In fact, it's shown in hieroglyphics. It's been around for a very long time," said Wyatt.

The study included 385 women undergoing chemotherapy or hormonal therapy for advanced-stage breast cancer that had spread beyond the breast. The women were broken into three groups: the first group received treatment by a certified reflexologist, the next group got a foot massage (placebo), and the last group received standard medical treatment and no reflexology.

Wyatt and her team talked with participants about their symptoms before beginning the study, and checked in with them at weeks 5 and 11.

Results in the reflexology group included less shortness of breath, and because of that, they were better able to climb stairs, get dressed, or go grocery shopping.

Wyatt was surprised to find the results of the reflexology to be mostly physical, and not psychological. "We didn't get the change we might have expected with the emotional symptoms like anxiety and depression. The most significant changes were documented with their physical symptoms," said Wyatt.

Other unexpected results was the reduced tiredness experienced by the foot massage group, or the placebo group, especially since the reflexology group did not report similar findings. Wyatt is now researching if foot massage provides similar results as a simple and inexpensive option for cancer patients. 

If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.

Connecticut Foot Care Centers

Podiatrists in CT

Visit our website, friend and like our page on Facebook, and follow our tweets on Twitter.


Victoria Azarenka just can't seem to get her season started.

First she had to withdraw from the Brisbane International competition because of a botched pedicure that caused a painful ingrown toenail. Now, she's withdrawing from the Dubai Championships because of a bone bruise on her right foot.

Azarenka, who was replaced by Serena Williams at No. 1 on Monday, said she hurt her foot a week ago in Doha, Qatar, en route to the final, where she beat Williams. She showed no signs of and did not mention the injury while playing in Doha, where she successful defended the title.

"I have been playing on it a lot over the last five days so going to a new tournament is too much to handle right now. It keeps getting worse. It was an unfortunate decision that I had to make, and I'm very disappointeed," said Azarenka.

She said she was headed to the United States to have the injury evaluated and plans on playing in Indian Wells, California. Azarenka indicated that part of her reason for withdrawing has to deal with playing two weeks in a row against the world's top players. On the schedule in Dubai is Williams, along with No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska and No. 6 Angelique Kerber.

"Realizing that you play five days in a row against top players, sometimes is too much. You just try to play. And I tried, but my body says no. I cannot force it. I cannot put myself in a position to hurt myself. That would just be stupid," said Azarenka, who is being smart about her injury.

The Belarusian has won her last 12 matches, including her second Australia Open, but came under scrutiny at the Open for a lengthy medical timeout for what she said what a panic attack. It turned out to be breathing problems due to a rib injury.

Her withdrawal from Dubai ensures Williams keeps the No. 1 ranking for at least another week.

If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.

Connecticut Foot Care Centers

Podiatrists in CT

Visit our website, friend and like our page on Facebook, and follow our tweets on Twitter.

 

More than 50% of people spend a minimum of 4 hours a day on their feet at work, either by standing or walking around. This group of people includes those in the manufacturing and service sectors, which includes salespersons, industrial workers, cashiers and attendants at retail stores, and those in the hotel and hospitality workforce. Nurses, doctors, restaurant workers, and flight attendants are on their feet even longer, sometimes 8 to 12 hours a day. To complicate the footwear dilemma, many of these professions require work-specific shoes, giving workers few options for appropriate and comfortable shoes.

Many of our foot problems come from our work and shoe habits. Selecting the right shoes for how long you will be on your feet is crucial to keeping foot ailments at bay. No one wants to be out of work with an injury! Here are some things you should look for when selecting shoes for work:

Shoes with low heels. Completely flat shoes are not the best option when you are going to be standing on your feet all day, as most provide no arch support or structure. Your heels should be elevated by at least a quarter inch up to two inches to provide optimal arch support.

Shoes with a large toe box. Our feet swell during the day, so those pointy-toed shoes that you put on first thing in the morning are going to make your piggy toes squeal with pain by the end of the day. Shoes with a large toe box provide room for your feet to grow during the day. There should be enough wiggle room for your toes in the front.

Shoes with laces. Shoes with laces keep your feet from sliding forward when walking. Think of shoe laces like the seat belt in your car- they keep you from going anywhere you shouldn't!

Shoes with arch support. It's been mentioned already, but good arch support is crucial to how your feet will feel at the end of the day. Visit a shoe retailer that specializes in work shoes, and add an orthotic if need be.

Safety footwear. With new government regulations, employees taking employers to court over lapsed safety regulations, there has been a rise in safety footwear. Steel toe boots are designed for those on construction sites or industrial buildings, and keep the worker's feet safe from nails, concrete, bricks, heavy machinery, and other dangerous items in the workplace.

Women should keep away from stilettos and very high heels, as it makes working and moving difficult. You can blame it on marketing and advertising, which tempts women into making poor shoe choices for work. How often have we seen ads on television or in magazines where the female office worker is clad in stilettos, looking perfectly happy and content? Wonder how happy she is at the end of the day. Sensible shoes do a lot more to tone and shape your legs than uncomfortable sky high heels.

Making good work shoe selections early on in your life will make your feet happy later in life.

If you believe have a foot problem and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.

Connecticut Foot Care Centers

Podiatrists in CT

Visit our website, friend and like our page on Facebook, and follow our tweets on Twitter.