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ShoeshoesAre you a walker looking for a great winter alternative?  Is your family looking for an activity that everyone can enjoy?  Snowshoeing may be the answer, and its health benefits are an added bonus!  

Snowshoeing provides a good cardio workout while strengthening the legs and upper body. It burns about 450 calories per hour for someone weighing around 150 lbs who is snowshoeing on flat, packed snow.  Snow conditions and terrain contribute to the intensity of the workout, so powder on hillier trails will burn even more calories.  

As with any winter activity, keep your feet warm and dry to avoid frostbite.  Wearing layers, even on your feet, is important.  Choose synthetic and wool socks instead of cotton.  Also, water-proof shoes will insure comfort on the trails.  Don’t ignore signs of frostbite such as itching, tingling, or numbness, and know what to do if these symptoms occur. Listen to your feet, and contact Brian Cragg to address any concerns.

The Markham Museum hosts Family Snowshoe Days and Snowshoe Fun for Children (registration required.)  These two hour sessions include a review of snowshoeing basics, and an opportunity to play games, and explore the museum grounds.  There are many snowshoeing trails in Ontario, so take advantage of the opportunity to view the beautiful winter scenery, and get a great workout at the same time.

Contact Chiropodist, Brian Cragg to insure that your feet are in top shape for snowshoeing and other winter activities.  Call Markham Foot Care Clinic at (905) 294-8087 to set an appointment today, or visit our website and click on “Appointment Request.”

photo credit: m.prinke via photopin cc

Living with arthritis? You are not alone!  More than 4.6 million Canadians are affected by arthritis, and it is currently the most common cause of disability in Canada. Your feet are crucial to your mobility, so when arthritis strikes, it’s vital that you are informed about this condition.

Arthritic pain comes in different forms. Common symptoms in your feet and ankles include stiffness, limited motion, recurring pain, redness or heat, and swelling. Most people who suffer from arthritis are afflicted with osteoarthritis, or degenerative joint disease. This type of arthritis is generally brought on by age and damaged joint tissues being unable to repair themselves. Another form is rheumatoid arthritis. While less common, it is a far more serious form of the disease. More than 50% of cases affect people 40-70 years of age.

Muscle relaxation exercises and reducing stress are excellent ways to manage your pain. Establishing a routine of regular physical activity will help you strengthen your joints, and increase your flexibility and energy.

Those who neglect foot problems early in life are more likely to develop arthritic issues later. If you cause enough damage to your joints and cartilage, it can initiate devastating inflammation in your feet and ankles.

This is why it’s critical to see a foot specialist after any foot or ankle injury. At Markham Foot Care Clinic, we can help in the prevention of arthritic conditions by treating your current injuries. If you are currently suffering from arthritis, Brian Cragg, our chiropodist, can assess your condition and lay out a treatment and management plan for you. Set up an appointment today by calling (905) 294-8087.

By Brian Cragg
December 13, 2012
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Diabetes   Dry Feet   frostbite   jack frost   cold feet   foor pain  

Protect your feet from frostbitePicture the season’s first real snowfall – throwing on your coat and boots with the exuberance of a child and taking your first steps in the snow. The crunch beneath your feet, the glint of the sun as it makes the snow sparkle like diamonds – it’s wintertime! We marvel at the wonderland around us, but it’s important to remember to keep your feet warm during the winter.

Keeping your feet dry is key to keeping them warm. Wet feet very quickly become cold feet, which can lead to serious issues like frostbite. Having dry feet begins with choosing the right pair of socks. Look for thick fleece or wool socks as opposed to cotton. These fabrics are far more waterproof than cotton and will do more to keep your feet nice and toasty.

It’s important that you choose the right kind of boots for your needs. They should be comfortable, waterproof, and spacious enough for your toes to wiggle inside of them. If you’re prone to particularly cold feet, consider investing in some packs of warmers. They heat up quickly and last for hours.

For those with diabetes, keeping your feet warm is especially important. The poor circulation associated with diabetes keeps an adequate flow of blood from reaching your feet, making them cold. That, coupled with the harsh elements, is a recipe for disaster. You should not only bundle up your feet when you go outside, but also wear warm socks and slippers when inside.

We all want to enjoy the winter fun, but it should never be at the cost of your health. If you have any questions or concerns about keeping your feet warm during the winter, give the Markham Foot Care Clinic a call at (905) 294-8087 to set up an appointment.

Protect your feet during cold and flu seasonCold season is upon us - the coughing, sniffling, sneeze-inducing weather that makes us want to hide beneath our duvets with a steaming bowl of soup. It can be a dangerous time for those with diabetes and you may be wondering how managing your condition figures in when you’re ill.

The first step is finding out if you are at risk.

Consistent, daily management of your diabetes is crucial. When we’re sick, our blood glucose levels fluctuate unpredictably. To manage these fluctuations, it’s recommended that you test yourself every two to four hours. This will help you prevent your blood glucose from spiking or dropping drastically.

Taking multiple medications at once isn’t ideal, but it’s important that you continue taking your diabetes medication and insulin while you are ill. When choosing a cold or flu medication, opt for sugar-free syrups and lozenges so you’re not adding extra sugar to your system.

Hydration is an important factor for all people who have diabetes. It’s even more important for those who are sick. Be sure to drink lots of water or flavoured, sugar-free beverages to replace any lost fluids.

Keeping your skin hydrated is also important, not only when you are sick, but also during the rest of the year. Have a bottle of lotion handy for any point in the day when your legs and feet become dry. Massage the lotion in, stimulating circulation. These additional moments can be imperative to the maintenance of your foot health.

Staying healthy during the winter months is important to all of us. If you have any questions about how proper diabetic healthcare affects the health of your feet, or if you are experiencing any foot discomfort, please contact our foot specialists. Brian Cragg, our Chiropodist, can assess your condition and give you the guidelines and care necessary to keep your feet healthy.

A tingling sensation may be fine when it comes to the excitement of the holidays. However, if you are experiencing tingling and numbness in your feet, these are telltale-warning signs of a serious nerve condition called peripheral neuropathy. This condition is most is often caused by the effects of diabetes. It’s important that you seek professional medical help right away.

Neuropathy is a serious medical concern and if left untreated, may result in more serious medical conditions. Loss of blood circulation, foot ulcers, and even amputation can all result if you ignore the warning signs your feet are telling you.

So let us help you! Our foot specialist, Chiropodist Brian Cragg, can evaluate your condition to determine if neuropathy is to blame for your foot discomfort. Although neuropathy can’t be cured, it can be successfully treated so that your painful symptoms no longer affect your life. Managing your blood sugar levels is also a key factor in treating peripheral neuropathy. Maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise program can help keep your levels regulated.

Since November is Diabetes Month, take some time to become more knowledgeable on diabetes and how it can affect you and your feet! Contact our office so you can get the medical attention you need to prevent neuropathy from ruining your day!

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