Walking Our Way Through COVID
The Healthy View
Like you, we’ve been trying to find the best ways to get more fresh air and exercise during the pandemic. That’s meant more long walks, hikes, runs through the local park… But these activities open us up to new areas of pain, potential overuse injuries, ankle sprains… So, our team has compiled a few short articles related to the issues you may be experiencing right now, allowing you to understand your aches and pains and helping you find possible solutions so you can keep on walking.
What is Metatarsalgia?
As we all continue to work our way through COVID-19, our living and exercise habits continue to evolve. Our neighbourhoods and favourite walking trails are now mini highways of people seeking fresh air and exercise. Unfortunately, like many other activities, overuse conditions are starting to surface, causing aches and pains in new areas. One of the most common foot injuries is called Metatarsalgia.
Metatarsalgia is a general term used to denote a painful foot condition in the metatarsal region (the area just before the toes, often referred to as the ball-of-the-foot). Metatarsalgia is usually located under the 2nd, 3rd, and or 4th metatarsal heads.
With this common foot condition, one or more of the metatarsal heads become painful and/or inflamed, usually due to excessive pressure over a long period of time. You may experience acute, recurrent, or chronic pain with Metatarsalgia. Poor foot function or dramatic increase in weight bearing activities can be the primary cause. If you over or under pronate the joints on the ball-of-the-foot receive excessive “shear force” loading as the metatarsal arch collapses. Thinning of the metatarsal fat pad and a short 1st metatarsal can also be contributing factors. Thinned soled or very flexible shoes/boots can also be the cause.
Treatment & Prevention:
The first step in treating Metatarsalgia is to determine the cause of the pain. If your symptoms have resulted from increased walking, shortening your distance and taking days off between long walks or runs would be wise. Review your footwear as well. A tradionional running shoe would serve as an excellent walking shoe. If snow and ice is under foot, wear a hiking style boot for support, warmth, and traction. The stiffer sole will further protect the metatarsals and reduce shear force properties.
If the problem does not resolve via modified activity and improved footwear, you may have a “mechanical” foot issue. Conservative treatment involves unloading pressure to the ball-of-the-foot. This can be accomplished with either off-the-shelf foot beds or prescription orthotics that usually feature a metatarsal pad. Icing the painful area and strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the foot can also be beneficial.
If you’re in need of a consultation to diagnose your foot pain, please give us a call at 416-865-0903 or send us an email and we can book an appointment for you.
Understanding Ankle Sprains
Have you ever had an ankle sprain? Odds are, you’ve rolled your ankle at least once in your life, as these injuries are the most common musculoskeletal disorder documented in the athletic population. Ankle sprains are typically painful and result in a temporary state of disability and reduced function. Early management, and follow-up treatment by a qualified healthcare practitioner can optimize the healing process and speed up your return to normal activities. Unfortunately, approximately half of the people who sustain ankle sprains do not seek supervised, professional care. This leads to reoccurrence of the injury, with many people eventually showing signs of a condition called chronic ankle instability.
Chronic ankle instability results in a lingering state of decreased function, leading to negative impacts on physical activity and quality of life. When people suffer repeated ankle sprains, their risk of developing chronic ankle instability increases. There has also been an association between repeated ankle sprains and early onset arthritis of the ankle.
The risk of developing these negative consequences can, however, be reduced. Clinical intervention and therapy during the symptomatic stages of the injury, as well as appropriate strength and conditioning programs for the ankle, knee, and hip will improve ankle function and reduce injury risk of not only the ankle, but the entire lower limb.
It is important for everyone to acknowledge that ankle sprains are a noteworthy musculoskeletal injury, and that they require treatment by a trained healthcare professional. Reducing the prevalence of ankle sprains, along with overcoming the deficits in those who sustain an ankle sprain, will ultimately improve the quality of life and physical activity in the athletic and general population.
Gribble, PA, Bleakley, CM, Caulfield, BM, Docherty, CL, Fourchet, F, Fong, DT, Hertel, J, Hiller, CE, Kaminski, TW, McKeon, PO, & Refshauge, KM. (2016). 2016 consensus statement of the International Ankle Consortium: Prevalence, impact and long-term consequences of lateral ankle sprains. British Journal of Sports Medicine. Dec 1:50(24):1493-5.
Dr. Paul Glancey
Complimentary Parking at the First Canadian Place
The First Canadian Place is offering a promotion for a limited time where visitors can enjoy 3 hours of complimentary parking when you spend $50 (tax included) at participating stores located inside the FCP.
As the Sport Medicine Clinic continues to treat out of the Adelaide Health Clinic in the FCP, you can enjoy the benefit of getting treatment without the worry of figuring out where to park!
Our patients are eligible for this complimentary service as long as you have a receipt totaling $50. So, you can:
- Come in and get treatment
- Purchase any of our products that help with your recovery
How it works:
- Enter FCP parking garage from York or Adelaide street.
- Bring your receipt(s) from FCP retailers to the security desk (located inside the FCP building, street level) to get the 3-hour parking voucher.
- When you’re ready to leave, insert the parking ticket at the garage gate first, followed by the voucher.
If you parking at First Canadian Place for the first time, we encourage patients to park in lots #2 or #3 as those are closest to the Clinic.
Our hours remain 7:30am - 6:00pm, Monday - Friday.
To book an appointment please call 416-865-0903 or email our reception. We look forward to seeing you soon!