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Podiatrist - Washington
853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
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Posts for category: Pediatric Foot Care

Did you know that one in three children in the United States is overweight or obese? Childhood obesity increases the risk of several serious health problems in children, including heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. It also has a negative impact on the health of your feet. Being overweight increases the risk for and severity of several health problems such as stress fractures, sesamoiditis and metatarsalgia. In addition, being overweight leads children to be less active, which in turn increases the likelihood of being overweight. At Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we want to help break this vicious cycle. Below are tips to help combat childhood obesity:

Make Healthy Eating a Family Affair

Obtaining and maintaining a healthy weight should not be about dieting but rather about eating healthy all the time. Make small changes a little at a time. Some to try:

  • Switch to low fat  or nonfat dairy products—milk, cheese and yogurt with all the calcium but without all the calories
  • Serve appropriate sized portions—buy smaller plates to help change the perception of the right amount of food
  • Encourage everyone to drink more water and eliminate sugary sodas and fruit juices. If cutting fruit juice is difficult, try diluting with seltzer to create a “healthy” soda type beverage that is low in calories

Limit Screen Time

Today’s children and teens lead a more sedentary lifestyle partly due to the amount of time spent on computers, cell phones, gaming systems, etc. Set strict time limits on the amount of time per day or week that children can use those devices and encourage them to substitute physical activities.

Encourage Savvy Snacking

Read labels—many pre-packaged snacks are packed with sugar, trans fat and calories. Keep healthy snacks available, such as fresh fruit, baby carrots or bell peppers with hummus, or a small portion of almonds or walnuts. Try to limit a snack to 100 calories.

Turn Fitness into Fun

Getting exercise doesn’t have to be hard and boring. In fact, it can be an opportunity for families to spend enjoyable time together. Look into hiking, biking, roller or ice skating, kayaking and other activities that your children enjoy and they’ll be begging to do them rather than whining and complaining.

We want your child to have healthy feet and a healthy body. If he or she is experiencing any foot pain or discomfort, contact our Washington office at: 724-225-7410 to schedule an appointment with our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker.

 

 

When to Replace Your Child's ShoesIf you plan your family budget and have to closely monitor spending habits, you are not alone! Raising kids isn’t always easy on the pocketbook. Middle-income parents can expect to fork out around $241,000 per child over 18 years, and that doesn’t include the cost of college, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. While you catch your breath, let’s just talk about something simple - their shoes. It is a small investment for a child but the right shoes are very important in order for your kids to stay active and safe. Replacing children’s shoes may need to happen more often or sooner than you think.

Until about the age of 10, children can outgrow their shoes up to four times each year. You can’t always go by the signs of wear and tear, as children are often ready for new ones before the old ones have time to wear out. Shoes that have hardly been worn can be handed down to younger children, but avoid this practice when shoes are really worn down. The structure of the shoe can be compromised and may not support and protect their feet.

If your child is really active or regularly involved in sports, check their shoes often. Look for stressed seams, worn out soles, bulging sides, or toes that bend upwards. Also, pay attention if they complain about their feet hurting. When shoes are too small, their toes may be squeezing, pinching, or rubbing too much on the heels, which can cause pain and blisters.

Have their feet measured each time you go shopping—their feet may grow faster than you think! Buy shoes to accommodate the larger foot if they are different sizes and make sure there is about a half inch of space between their toes and the end of the shoe. Look for a sturdy, thick sole for cushioning and traction and buy the right shoe for the right activity—all shoes are not created equal when it comes to sports.

If you have any concerns about your child’s foot health, there may be more going on than just a footwear problem. Contact Philip S. Pinsker, D.P.M., at our Washington, PA, office at (724) 225-7410 or request an appointment online.

Photo Credit: JBDeboer via Pixabay.com

Problems concerning your feet are not limited to adulthood. In fact, there are many conditions that are typically found in children. Kohler’s disease refers to a condition where the bone of the arch of your foot (the tarsal navicular bone) is fragmented before it ultimately heals and hardens. This disease is most commonly found within children age 3-5 years.

Children with Kohler’s disease are primarily affected in only one foot. The exact cause of this disease has not yet been determined, however, it is thought to be related to a disruption of blood flow concerning your navicular bone, which eventually leads to bone decay. The disease is also associated with excessive stress to your tarsal navicular bone and its surrounding blood vessels before your child’s bones begin to harden. This usually takes place between the ages of 18-30 months.

Kohler’s disease is associated with a wide range of symptoms that are most often mild. This disease may cause pain and swelling in your child’s feet, as well as a slight limp. It may also alter your child’s gait making mobility an extremely difficult task.Treatment plans involve obtaining plenty of rest and refraining from bearing excessive weight upon your feet. This may require a decrease in physical exercise including limited walking and standing.

If your child is currently suffering from Kohler’s disease, contact our office at (724) 225-7410 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Phil Pinsker.

“Look Mom, no hands!” Every parent with school-aged children has probably heard words similar to these at one point or another. The excitement of kids going back to school can be mixed with apprehension as kids leave the safety of the home.

Playground injuries are common. The National Program for Playground Safety released findings that from 2001-2008, there were 218, 851 children who needed emergency care for injuries sustained on playground equipment. Minor or major, accidents do happen as kids expend their energy on the equipment and the fields during recess. If your child comes home complaining about foot pain or discomfort elsewhere, it is worth taking a close look at what could be going on in case the pain is due to a fracture.

A fracture usually can’t be seen by the naked eye unless it is severe and breaks through the skin. A jump or fall from a high ledge or a hard run-in with another child could result in a break in a bone. A stress fracture is a hairline break that can still allow a child to walk and play but will lead to significant pain over time. A hairline break could cause pain, tenderness, swelling, bruising and difficulty bearing weight. If your child heard a snap or popping sound, a major fracture could have occurred and would result in immediate pain and swelling. Even if your child has a high threshold for pain and wants to tough it out, if they are complaining you should have their symptoms diagnosed. The right treatment early is the best way to prevent problems in the future and this is especially true when it comes to fractures.

We help patients of all ages take care of their feet, from minor blisters to major injuries. Please contact Dr. Phil Pinsker if you or your child is in need of foot care or treatment during this school season. Contact our office in Washington, PA at (724) 225-7410 to make an appointment or visit us online!

Help your child deal with heel pain from Sever's Disease between visits. If you are a parent, are you often on the lookout for ways to be the best you can be for your family? Learn from the experts and glean important information at the Parenting Expo coming to Pittsburgh, PA, March 8-9, 2014. This two-day event will help you get up-to-date information and education from speakers and exhibitors. Anytime your child has foot pain, such as from Sever’s disease, Dr. Philip Pinsker is available to offer information and help as well.

Sever’s disease is quite common among children, especially those who are regularly involved in sports. It is a heel injury that develops as a result of inflammation to the growth plate in the heel. Sometimes the heel bone grows faster than the surrounding muscles and tendons, which makes them tight and overstretched. Stress from physical activity can then bring discomfort and pain in the heel area.

We always suggest that parents have their child’s foot pain diagnosed and treated at the start of symptoms. If you have to wait for an appointment, we can offer a few ways to help alleviate your child’s symptoms until Dr. Philip Pinskercan see him or her. The first step is to make them rest, which isn’t always easy when they are always on the go. Rest starts the healing process, and they should avoid any form of physical activity that would further aggravate the injury. It may help to elevate the affected foot and apply ice for twenty minutes, two to three times a day. An over-the-counter pain medication suitable for children may ease their discomfort, but a medical professional should always first approve this. 

If your child complains of heel pain or has difficulty walking, contact Dr. Philip Pinsker and we will make every effort to see your child as soon as possible. Take their symptoms seriously, as ignoring symptoms may only lead to an injury becoming worse. Call our office in Washington, PA today at (724) 225-7410 to make an appointment