dancer foot injury

Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle - Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston

Repetitive stress causes small breaks in the bone and these are called stress fractures. The bones of the foot or ankle absorb the full impact of each step you take, and this constant abuse can lead to stress fractures.

Causes:

  • Overuse
  • Abnormal foot structure
  • Bone deformities
  • Wearing of incorrect footwear while exercising
  • Osteoporosis

Stress fractures are hard to detect and if left untreated can lead to severe foot injuries. Consult a podiatrist to learn more about stress fractures and its causes. The doctors at Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are podiatrists who specialize in helping people suffering from fractures of the foot and ankle.

Groups at high risk

This injury is common among people whose daily activities include high levels of impact on their feet and ankles such as those who:

  • Play tennis or basketball
  • Run
  • Practice gymnastics
  • People who had a sedentary lifestyle and suddenly gets active through a high impact and intense workout. They are affected since they do not yet have a strong muscle to handle the intensity and degree of their activity.
  • Someone with osteoporosis are at high risk because their bones are weakened by the disease, thus, prone to fractures.

Characteristics of pain in stress fracture

  • The pain felt usually occurs at the general area of the fracture.
  • It manifests as a “pinpoint pain” or pain felt upon touching the site of the injury and is accompanied by swelling.
  • Pain occurs during or after the activity, disappears when resting, and may return when moving or standing.
  • Any activity, high-impact or not, will just aggravate the pain.

If you increase your level of activity before a stress fracture is healed properly, it may lead to a full fracture.

Treatment (Check with your podiatrist for treatment)

It varies depending on the individual and the level of injury.

  • Resting the hurt foot is the primary way to treat a stress fracture
  • Use of crutches
  • Immobilization
  • Physical therapy
  • Surgery may be required to have support pins installed around the stress fracture and assist in healing.

Some ways to that may help to prevent foot and ankle fractures

  • If you have a new exercise regimen or other kind of high level impact activity, set incremental goals weekly so that you can still build-up your muscle strength. Also wear supportive shoes to protect your feet better.
  • Stop exercising and rest if you start to experience any symptoms of the stress fracture. Should the symptoms persist, it is best if you consult a podiatrist and get yourself checked and examined.
  • Knowing and remembering these tips will help you prevent stress fractures to your foot and ankle, and will allow you to live normally and continue running without any injury at all.  

At Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston with six offices located in North Houston, TX, we specialize in helping people with foot and ankle fractures. To schedule an appointment, call 281-444-4114.

 

Identifying Foot Injuries in Dancers - Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston

Strong, healthy feet is essential for any professional dancer. Twists, turns, jumps and other explosive movements are just some of the dance steps that dancers perform regularly. Add to this to the pressure of keeping their body’s slim.  This can result to poor nutrition that can lead to weak bones and foot injuries.

A podiatrist may recommend the use of enhanced imaging techniques to positively identify a foot injury. This is because some foot injuries do not show any symptoms. Foot injuries only become evident when it has become too far advanced and require surgery. Consult a podiatrist for early signs of foot injury.  The doctors at Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are podiatrists who specialize in helping people suffering from dancer’s heel.

Treatment and Management

Anti-inflammatory drugs and pain medications provide instant pain relief. It enables dancers to continue with their performance by eliminating the pain felt with every movement. However, this is not a long term solution and should only be taken to relieve symptoms.
Applying ice over the inured area helps reduce swelling and reduce pain. Place a piece of cloth between the ice pack and skin to prevent skin damage.
A podiatrist may also recommend the use of a cast or immobilizing boot to prevent foot movement. This promotes proper healing and prevents further injury.
Emergency treatment for foot injuries can be done by resting the feet to reduce pain and prevent further injury. Application of ice, compression to prevent bleeding and elevation to reduce swelling.

Common Foot Problems in Dancers

Ankle Sprain

Sprains shouldn’t be a cause of too much alarm since treatments are mostly non-surgical. Symptoms of an ankle sprain include sharp nagging pain and swelling.

Achilles Tendonitis

The Achilles tendon is the strongest tendon in the body. But repeated abuse through dancing can cause injury. Swelling and pain at the heels and back of the calf could indicate this injury.

Dancer’s Heel

Dancing could place great pressure on the ankle. A bony protrusion can develop damaging soft tissues in the area. A dancer’s heel causes pain especially when the dancer attempts to stand on the toes.

Hammertoe

A hammertoe is described as a toe deformity where the second toe bends toward the big toe. If left untreated the deformity becomes fixed making it difficult to wear shoes. 

Keeping the feet in tip-top shape is important for dancers. Pain during movement makes it difficult for dancers to perform gracefully or execute simple dance steps.  

The doctors at Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are podiatrists who specialize in helping people suffering from in helping people find relief from chronic foot pain and foot disorders.  To schedule an appointment, call 281-444-4114