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By Patrick Fettinger DPM
July 27, 2020
Category: blog

At Patrick Fettinger, DPM, one of the most frequent reasons patients come to our Fairfield County offices is to get relief from heel pain. This painful symptom can become quite debilitating. When every step you take hurts, it’s easy to see how heel trouble can prevent you from enjoying the active lifestyle you take for granted.

Tracking Down the Cause

The first step is finding out what is making your heel hurt. Our podiatrist, Dr. Patrick J. Fettinger, will examine your feet and also get a complete medical history. The foot doctor may also order imaging studies such as x-rays to get a clearer picture of your heel disorder. One of the primary sources of heel pain doesn’t even originate in the heel and that is plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissue located on the bottom of your foot between your heel and your toes. If the plantar fascia becomes inflamed, it can lead to pressure and pain in the heel. Most often structural defects in your foot such as overly high arches, or overpronation are the source of plantar fasciitis. Other possible causes of heel pain include:

  • Fat pad atrophy on the heel (a natural part of the aging process)
  • Being overweight
  • Stress fracture
  • Tendonitis
  • Nerve problem

Determining Treatment

Finding the underlying cause of your heel pain will in turn dictate the course of treatment.

There are several conservative methods available:

  • Shoe modifications—particularly choosing styles with better arch support
  • Icing
  • Stretching exercises
  • Physical therapy
  • Anti-inflammatory medications and injection therapy
  • Custom orthotics

For persistent cases of heel pain, we also offer Extracorporeal Shock Wave Treatment (ESWT).

Continuing to walk on a heel that hurts will most likely result in worsening the injury. Contact our office in New Fairfield (203-746-9660) or Middlebury (203-598-0357) to schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience. Don’t suffer needlessly with heel pain.

By Patrick Fettinger DPM LLC
June 02, 2020
Category: blog

At Patrick Fettinger, DPM we know that many of our Middlesex County patients are joining the rest of the country and slowly, cautiously trying to re-open their own lives. The stay at home time may have helped slow the spread of the virus, but it had some negative side effects for sure. One casualty may have been your exercise program. Now it’s time to get started again but you want to do so in a way that won’t result in foot or ankle injury. Below some tips on re-entering the fitness realm.

 

Get Your Head in the Game

The first hurdle to overcome for many is motivation. There are a number of psychological factors at play that may have left you feeling lackluster and indecisive about starting a new exercise routine. Think about why you want to get in shape. Is it to feel healthier, stronger? Look better? Have more energy? Replace negative speak (“I’m too tired, It’s too hot/cold/rainy, etc.”) with positive messages the verbalize your goals (“I want to fit into my jeans, play with my grandkids, run a 5K, etc.”).

 

Check Up on Chronic Podiatric Problems

If you have suffered from an ongoing foot disorder such as plantar fasciitisweak anklesflat feetcontact our New Fairfield (203-746-9660) or Middlebury (203-598-0357) office to schedule a consultation with our podiatrist, Dr. Patrick J. Fettinger. The foot doctor will want to know if there have been any changes in your condition and can also recommend the best types of exercise to accommodate any ongoing podiatric concerns.

 

Choose Your Program

Of course, if you had a fitness regimen that was working before the pandemic and it’s available you can go back to it. But now it is also an opportunity to try something new. With summer weather consider outdoor activities or a combination of fitness activities that will help burn calories and increase muscle strength. Whatever you decide on, make sure you start out slowly and increase the intensity of your workout gradually.

 

Check Your Gear

The most important piece of exercise equipment in our mind is your shoes. Choose a pair that is suited for the type of activity you plan to do. Get professionally fitted if possible. If you already have athletic shoes, examine them for any signs of wear before getting started.

 

Stay Motivated

Put exercise on your calendar like any other appointment. Set small goals and celebrate each one as you reach them. Choose an “exercise buddy” that can help keep you accountable. It won’t take long until you’re back in the fitness groove. If at any time you begin to experience foot or ankle discomfort, contact us promptly.

By Patrick Fettinger, DPM, LLC
April 27, 2020
Category: blog

At Patrick Fettinger, DPM we hope all of our Fairfield County patients are staying safe and healthy. We know that COVID 19 has created a fair amount of stress for families. Working from home and distance learning, combined with fears connected to the virus, and an abundance of together time can be a recipe for disaster. Fortunately, there are ways to ease the strain and yes, actually have some good come out of this challenging time. Below are 4 suggestions to consider trying with your family.

  1. Stick to your routine as much as possible. Getting up at your usual time, performing basic hygiene daily, eating meals at regular times, doing chores—anything that is familiar will provide touchpoints of normalcy that will offer comfort and a sense of security. For parents and children to get necessary school/office work accomplished, create a schedule of work hours (with breaks).
  2. Create space to express feelings. All family members need to be able to share their fears and worries, as well as the positive things they’re experiencing during this time. Don’t try to sugarcoat or dismiss negative feelings. Make time to talk to each of your children individually and listen to what they’re saying before offering feedback.
  3. Stay/get physically active. Regular exercise is essential for good health (and not just during the time of the coronavirus!) If your family doesn’t already, now is a good time to start being physically active together. Walks or bike rides around the neighborhood, an indoor fitness circuit, video exercise routines or just working in the yard are all viable options at this time. Exercise elevates mood, helps maintain an appropriate weight, and improves sleep quality. 
  4. Make time for fun. One positive outcome of the stay home orders can be a chance to reconnect and enjoy family time. Plan specific activities like cooking together, watching a new or favorite movie, playing board games, organizing family photos, and making cards to send to friends and family.

If you experience any foot or ankle discomfort while exercising, contact our New Fairfield (203-746-9660) or Middlebury (203-598-0357) office to discuss your condition with our podiatrist, Dr. Patrick J. Fettinger. 

We will get through this challenging time!