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Feet Problems in the Elderly

Tuesday, 30 August 2022 00:00

The foot can be compared to a tire of a car. After many years of use, a foot can wear down like tires wear down. A tire becomes thin and the tread less dependable over time just as a human foot shows its age over time. The key difference between a foot and a tire is the former cannot be changed. We get one pair of feet per life. Because seniors are generally less active than those younger, they may not pay as much attention to their feet as they once did. But as one ages, they need to pay even more attention to their feet. If you are a senior you will likely experience foot pain. And foot pain is highly associated with a higher risk of recurrent falls, reduced mobility, and a loss of independence. Muscles and tendons lose elasticity with age and that contributes to pain. Additionally elderly foot pain is a result of putting on weight, losing fat on the padding of feet, compromised blood flow from health problems (such as diabetes or peripheral neuropathy), persistent foot problems, such as hammertoes, bunions, corns, calluses, wearing shoes that do not fit well, or simple neglect in care. Daily foot inspections, washing, drying, and moisturizing feet frequently, and cutting toenails straight across are all part of a good foot care routine. Paying attention to diet, exercising, and wearing properly fitted shoes and socks will all help in alleviating foot problems as well. If you are a senior or responsible for caring for a senior, include a podiatrist on the health care team to teach you how to care for your feet or provide diagnosis and treatment should a problem arise.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Ali Davis, DPM from The Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

The Elderly and Their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions 

  • Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet and can hide many life-threatening medical conditions.
  • Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
  • Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
  • Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
  • Shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Pressure sores
  • Loss of circulation in legs & feet
  • Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Overland Park, KS . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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