Run – Walk – PLAY with a big smile is the name of the game!

Run – Walk – PLAY with a big smile is the name of the game!

Run - Walk - PLAY

with a big smile is the name of the game!

Run-Walk-PLAY-Tibialis-posterior-pain

Run-Walk-PLAY Tibialis posterior pain can be often misdiagnosed

Run - Walk - PLAY with a big smile is the name of the game! That's exactly what Kyra can do now! Thanks to a correct diagnosis of her Tibialis posterior pain.

Did you know that there is a really powerful muscle that runs down the inside of your lower leg called the Tibialis posterior! The muscle helps control your arch, and it helps roll your foot back out, Giving you an arch.

A Tibialis posterior can become really sore and tired if it becomes overused. Often the pain is in your arch or just under your inside ankle bone. People with this problem who walk a little more than usual, spend longer on their feet, perhaps play sport may find that this area becomes very sore.

This is what lead Kyra's parents to bring her along to visit us. She had six months with pain in her feet, legs ankles. Her parents had tried several things before visiting us. A month into care with awesome orthotics and Kyra has NO more PAIN in her feet.

Her orthotics work by balancing her foot posture so that her arch is the right spot at the right time when walking + running. The Tibialis muscle then doesn't need to do as much work!

She is LOVING HER new orthotics and comfortable in them. She happily runs walks and plays sport in them.

Pain like this is widespread and is often misdiagnosed as things like growing pains. Frequently parents are told that there is nothing they can do. We are here to tell you that's not the case!

If you'd like help the first step is to call our helpful front desk team, they can run through what's been going on for you and what you have tried so far. They can then work out what type of appointment is best for you and the costs. They can then look at reserving your appointment time.

Our number is 02 9673 2987 we would love to be able to help!

Orthotics-Helped-with-Kyras-Tibialis-posterior-pain

Orthotics Helped with Kyra's Tibialis posterior pain

FREE Growing Pain Report by Dr Brenden Brown

Is it really growing pains?

 

7 simple signs every parent should know!

Are you worried about pain in your child feet? Not sure whats normal and whats not? Try accessing Dr Brenden’s helpful report on the “Growing pains - 7 simple signs every parent should know!” As a recognised expert in lower limb health with over 20 years’ experience, A past advisor for Clarks Kids footwear and lecturer on growing pains. Dr Brenden outlines what every Parent should know about Growing Pains and gives you fast ways to identify the “what and when” you need to know!

Shameless Plug or where to get real help!

Need help? Need another opinion? Just want to get this sorted? Great, we'd love to help you 😊 You can start by calling our wonderfully helpful team on 9673 2987. They are all parents and will be able to help answer questions and guide you in the right direction.

Another option is to use our call back service, pop your details in the very short form and we will call YOU back on a number and times that suits YOU best. 😊

Why you’re not getting better and what you can do about it

Why you’re not getting better and what you can do about it

Why you’re not getting better

and what you can do about it - Its you not me

Why You're Not Getting Better and what you can do about it

Why You're Not Getting Better and what you can do about it

Have you ever wondered why you're not getting better after seeing a therapist, and what you can do about it?  Dr Brenden Brown, the Leading Podiatrist at A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle Care, Penrith, explains that it could be you, not the therapist.

It's Father's Day. I love my dad, and I'm sitting in the entertainment area of my childhood home after cooking my dad his Father's Day breakfast. My brothers are here with their children as well, and we are discussing my parents impending trip to Europe, but more concerning in the discussion is the Back Pain that has my Mum currently in a wheelchair.

Mum has been to see a therapist. She's been given exercises and a treatment plan that she needs to undertake. My dad says, "Oh well. I think from here it's all up to Peter." I look at him, and I ask, "Who is Peter." My dad replies, "Your Mum's therapist. It's up to him whether or not your Mum will get to Europe. Let's hope he can get her better in time."  Pardon?

My head twirled, my eyes roll, and I'm quite sure I probably became the colour of an orange. I reply with all the love I can muster,  "This has very little to do with Peter and a whole stack to do with Mum."

That's right; It's not Peter's responsibility to get my Mum better! Peter has developed a treatment plan, and the biggest participant in that plan is Mum. Peter can show her what to do, tell her when to do it, but in the end, who is the person that is responsible - MUM!

I have no idea who Peter is as I've never met the guy. Still, I know from experience that this is a common expectation of patients that somehow it is the practitioners' responsibility to get patients better. I've got to tell you that while Peter and I have our patients’ best interest in mind and as therapists work hard to help out our patients reach their goals. I think there is very little further from the truth than it's "up to us" to get patients better. Dad... Mum... listening?

If I were to make a list of the most common reason that I see for people not getting better, at least half would be the laid at the feet of the patient themselves. Yes, I know this is a bitter pill to swallow if you are a patient and reading this blog is not going to make me at all popular, but them's the breaks, so to speak.

So what is the on "The list":

  • Not following your treatment plan - broadly speaking
  • Not completing your exercise program as instructed
  • Not Completing exercises as often as required
  • Not wearing the footwear your practitioner suggests
  • Picking and choosing the best bits of your treatment plan
  • Holding your practitioner responsible for your success

Now, of course, other reasons can contribute to your lack of recovery and yes, at times they relate to therapy or perhaps the diagnosis. Yes, practitioners get it wrong but so do patients! As humans, we seem pretty programmed to point the finger at others than recognize that we may be a contributor to our problems.

If you find following your therapist's instructions difficult, let them know, SPEAK UP! Sometimes 13 different stretches in a day is too much. But equally, if they tell you that you need to do this to get better, you've two choices - 1. Get to it or 2. Get a second opinion. But that's it! Choosing not to follow the plan and then blame a therapist for your lack of progress is like not taking your medication the doctor prescribes and returning to them complaining that you're not getting any better.

Why you’re not getting better - Its not ME its YOU

To the therapist who is reading this: Stop being walked over! If your patient isn't following their plan and you know it or they are negotiating not completing vital parts of the program, fricken speak up! Tell them straight! You are in no way helping either of you by following that course. The patient doesn't improve, you look stupid and incapable, and that is a lose-lose for you all! That patient will see someone else and will bad mouth you to their friends, loved ones and the next therapist they see! I know because they see me!

Why You're Not Getting Better - Its not me its you

Why You're Not Getting Better - Its not me its you

Well, after my head stopped twirling like the cast of the Exorcist, I had to make sure my Mum had a clear understanding that Europe was not only physically thousands of kilometres away, but the same distance metaphorically. Unless she stuck to HER part of HER treatment plan, she was not going anywhere.

The result? My Mum is, as I write, jumping on and off buses in Europe enjoying her holiday!

ABOUT DR BRENDEN BROWN

Dr Brenden Brown, Podiatrist & Shendi Brown

Dr Brenden Brown, Podiatrist & Shendi Brown

Founder of A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle Care in Sydney, and former president of the Australasian Podiatry Council, Dr Brenden Brown (A.K.A Dr Foot) is a wealth of knowledge on how to take care of your feet, including how to find the best shoes.

Follow him on social media:
 instagram.com/askdrfoot
 facebook.com/podiatristsydney
 twitter.com/AStepAheadFAC

Ten-things-to-know-before-choosing-a-podiatrist

Free Report “10 things to know before choosing a Podiatrist”

Choosing your Sydney foot doctor is an important decision and can mean the difference between getting mediocre results and living pain-free. Learn about the top 10 things you should know when choosing your podiatrist in St Marys or Penrith.

Shameless Plug or where to get real help!

Need help? Need another opinion? Just want to get this sorted? Great, we'd love to help you 😊 You can start by calling our wonderfully helpful team on 9673 2987. They are all parents and will be able to help answer questions and guide you in the right direction.

Another option is to use our call back service, pop your details in the very short form and we will call YOU back on a number and times that suits YOU best. 😊

Growing Pains and Questions Parents Should Ask

Growing Pains and Questions Parents Should Ask

Growing Pains and Questions Parents Should Ask

Growing Pains and Questions Parents Should Ask

Growing Pains and Questions Parents Should Ask. Will they grow out of it? Are Growing Pains Real?

"Growing pains" is a common description but is it really a diagnosis? Let's talk about a few questions parents can ponder, that may help you decide

"Growing pains" is often a description used for kids who get pain in their feet ankles or legs.

Many times this pain can become so horrible that the pain can wake kids at night. Parents often describe their children waking in tears.

At other times parents report foot ankle or leg pain when their child has been active, sometimes during or shortly after the activity. But at other times it can be the next day or even the day after that! Now that can be super confusing. This leads to confusion, so you ...

Head to "the Doctor"

It's the internet age, so parents pretty soon head to Dr google and seek results. Boom you're in an information storm. With suggestions from adding magnesium to your kid's diet to your kid should try barefoot running while chanting positive affirmations.

Then you head to your local health professional, and many times it can be just as frustrating. You're told by this well-meaning health practitioner that all is ok and that it's simply "Growing Pains" hmmmm and that they will simply "Grow out of it."

Now, most parents are pretty clever, and they leave the office of their humble health practitioner a little confused and some frustrated.

With this in mind, we thought it might be worth prepping you with some questions you can ask your health practitioner. Ask these if you're not sure it is merely magical "Growing pains."

Q. Is it possible that the pain is from your kid's muscles not working well?  

Is the pain from muscles that are having to overwork to compensate for other underworking structures?

Pain mostly comes from muscles overworking. This is often a result of other muscles no longer doing their job or structures in a body, not doing what they are designed to do. Kids are no different! Look for structures that are not working and why these muscles are having to overwork.

Q. Is the pain like other muscle pain people get that occurs because something is out of alignment?

If not, why not? Why wouldn't kids get this? This is something that has been observed in both adults and children for centuries. It's commonly understood in medicine across the world. Why would it be any different in your child?

Q. How is it that pain from Growing is associated with my child being active?

Why is it that pain from growing happens when my child plays soccer or goes for long walks?

It seems quite strange that active kids suddenly have growth spurts really close to their activity. These growth spurts somehow caused pain? Does it seem Logical to you? No, it doesn't seem logical to us either.

Q. If pain from simply "growing" why don't all kids get it?

All kids grow, right? Yup, we are pretty confident that they do! So it stands to reason that If the pain is simply from your kid's body "Growing" all kids should get the same pain as a result. But hang on, not all kids do. Do you see a pattern yet?

Q. If the pain is from "growing", why is the pain almost universally only localised in feet ankles and legs?

Do kids shoulders, arms, spines, heads not grow? Of course they do yet no pain there!

Q.How much does a kid have to "grow" for the pain to develop as a result?

When bones grow, they grow less than a millimetre a day. Try grabbing your finger and pulling it outwards. Are you in excruciating pain? NO! Hang on?? You've just stretched your tendon far more than 1 mm! How is it that you're not in pain? If growing less than a millimetre causes children to wake in unbearable pain?

Answers we all need answers!

These are all questions we encourage parents to ask themselves when considering or being told by well-meaning health practitioners that the pain their child is suffering is simply from them growing.

Hey, parents a quick tip. When your practitioner tells you "they'll grow out of it" It's ok to ask that practitioner for their mobile phone number so you can call them and then they can comfort and calm your child when they are complaining or worse crying late in the evening or waking you around 1:30 am due to pain. Kids at 1:30 am get way better when you tell them that "they will just grow out of it."  

However, if this doesn't work and you'd like some more practical information on this Dr Brenden our principal Podiatrist has written a short ebook on kids growing pains. We will provide a link below if you would like to download this. (Yes this is a shameless plug)

Here is the link to the ebook! 

In our belief, kids should not have pain! Pain in the kids after activity -  IS NOT NORMAL!

Part of growing up should be running jumping, scrapping your knee once or twice and at times getting ridiculously dirty! But the most crucial part is that kids should be able to be active without pain!

FREE Growing Pain Report by Dr Brenden Brown

Is it really growing pains?

 

7 simple signs every parent should know!

Are you worried about pain in your child feet? Not sure whats normal and whats not? Try accessing Dr Brenden’s helpful report on the “Growing pains - 7 simple signs every parent should know!” As a recognised expert in lower limb health with over 20 years’ experience, A past advisor for Clarks Kids footwear and lecturer on growing pains. Dr Brenden outlines what every Parent should know about Growing Pains and gives you fast ways to identify the “what and when” you need to know!

Shameless Plug or where to get real help!

Need help? Need another opinion? Just want to get this sorted? Great, we'd love to help you 😊 You can start by calling our wonderfully helpful team on 9673 2987. They are all parents and will be able to help answer questions and guide you in the right direction.

Another option is to use our call back service, pop your details in the very short form and we will call YOU back on a number and times that suits YOU best. 😊

School shoes for kids – How to choose the right size

School shoes for kids – How to choose the right size

School Shoes for Kids - How to choose the right size

Choosing a shoe size? How do you make sure you get it right in the era of self serve? How do you make sure the delightful 15 year old helping you at the shoe shop is getting it right?

Podiatrist Dr. Brenden Brown from Sydney-based clinic A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle Care shows you how to quickly and simply make sure you have the right fit for your child's feet!

School Shoes for Children

Our children spend 30 hours a week in school shoes, that's in excess of 15 000 hours in a school child's lifetime. Choosing the right shoe for your child is extremely important.

Poorly fitting children's shoes can be problematic and may lead to problems in adulthood such as hammer toes, ingrown toenails, corns on the feet, callus and possibly bunions. Poorly fitting shoe or unsupportive shoes may exacerbate foot problems.

These problems can be painful and may require treatment ranging from simple consultations with a podiatrist to surgery. It therefore makes sense to, where possible, ensure children’s shoes fit properly.

 

Generally, most podiatrists when fitting footwear to children for school would recommend you look for the following features.

  • There should be a child’s thumb width between the end of the shoe and the end of the longest toe
  • The sole of the shoe should be fairly straight as the foot is straight
  • The fastening mechanism should hold the heel firmly in the back of the shoe
  • The back part of the shoe should be strong and stable. This area is often referred to as the heel counter
  • The shoe should flex across the ball of the foot, not in the middle of the shoe
  • The sole should not twist. They shouldn’t “wring out”
  • Lace up, Velcro or a buckle is best. Slip on shoes are not generally considered the best thing for long term use
  • Yes mum you are right! It is better for your feet if you do up your laces!
  • A Heel height greater than 1.5 cm should be avoided for long term use
I still have my feet on the ground, I just wear better shoes.Oprah Winfrey

How often do you need to buy new school shoes?

A school shoe should generally last nine months to a year. However you should realise that if you notice your child has a growth spurt it is wise to check to see if their foot has also grown, as the two will go hand in hand. After the age of three it is generally thought a child’s foot will grow about half a size every 6 months.

Large amounts of “wearing” noticed on the shoe, or shoes, that cause pain should be replaced.

You should not place a child in “hand-me-down” shoes.

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* No medical treatment can guarantee 100% success. Registered medical and health professions in Australia are by law not allowed to guarantee success. This comes as a result of all human bodies reacting differently to treatments. Patients should thoroughly consider all treatment options available to them.

Kids Feet – What age should parents worry about their kid’s feet?

Kids Feet – What age should parents worry about their kid’s feet?

Kids Feet - What age should parents worry about their kid’s feet?

Pain (usually described as aching, throbbing or cramping) in the thighs, calves, behind the knee of one or both legs, or in the feet that occurs in the evening or night. These are the typical symptoms of ‘growing pains’. However, despite the name—there’s no evidence that growing is painful.

So what is causing your child’s pain?

Muscle overuse during the day is a likely cause of musculoskeletal pain at night. Muscle overuse can be caused by simple and common activities such as running, jumping, climbing or even standing for lengthy periods.

Common symptoms of activity-based musculoskeletal pain include:

  • Pain located in the lower limbs
  • Pain is isolated to lower limbs (legs, calves, ankles, feet)
  • Likely incidence of sport or activity within last 48 hours
  • Pain can worsen as child continues activity
  • Temporary relief may be achieved with pain relief medication, massage or heat packs

Treating ‘growing pains’

Children suffering from ‘growing pains’ are commonly told, “they’ll grow out of it” or “just rest” — this advice is not only disappointing and frustrating for parents it is NOT A TREATMENT MODALITY,” says podiatrist and founder of A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle Care Dr Brenden Brown.

If the discomfort is linked to activity-based musculoskeletal pain, there are a myriad treatment options including:

  • Foot posture assessment
  • Soft tissue rehab therapy
  • Warm-up and training modifications
  • Progressive muscle loading
  • Prescription orthotics (ideally soft and pliable)

The answer to ‘growing pains’ is that you don’t need to wait until your child outgrows the pain. The pain experienced is treatable with the right assessment and approach,” advises Dr Brenden.

A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle Care is based in Western Sydney. We have multiple practitioners with lots of experience in helping kids become pain free.

If you’d like more information please contact our helpful front desk team. They are brilliant at working through what help you need, guiding you to the appointment that is right for you or your family, running through cost and then reserving your appointment time. Call us today on +61 2 9673 2987 we look forward to helping.

Got a question about growing pains, musculoskeletal pain or any other foot or ankle concern? Visit us on Instagram#AskDrFoot @AstepAheadFootandAnkleCare or Facebook @podiatristsydney

 

Transcript

So, as a parent of a newborn or a little kid, it can be super confusing. There's stacks for us to know. One of the really confusing things that lots of parents ask me about is when do you need to start worrying about your kids’ feet? Is there a magical age? Well, first of all no, there's actually probably not. In this video, I'm going to run through a little bit of history about kids’ feet and how they develop, and then I'm going to talk to you about some really simple things that you can look for to make sure that your kids develop properly. But also, if they present with these signs or symptoms, you know to take them to see a qualified podiatrist and get some answers or some help straight away.

So, some brief history of how kids’ feet develop. When kids are born, they're really cute, chubby little feet. Around about the age of seven or nine is when we expect kids’ bones to ossify or harden and develop an arch. So, before the age of seven or nine, it' pretty normal for kids to have flat feet. So, you don't have to worry about flat feet until around about seven or nine. However, to make things tricky, because that's what we like to do to you parents out there, there's one caveat. And that is, if your child has flat feet and they have one of the following signs or symptoms, even before the age of seven, you should take them to see a very well-qualified foot doctor podiatrist that deals with children.

The first one is pain. Your child should never have pain in their feet. I personally don't believe in growing pains, and there's a great video that I've done on exactly why I don't believe in growing pains. You can check it out in the link below. But no child should have pain in their feet or while they're growing.

The next sign or symptom that you should be worried about is if your child trips, falls or is clumsy or, often said by Dads to me in kind of whispering: they're a little bit unco. If they're any of those things guess what? Again, you should take them to see a qualified podiatrist who has experience dealing with kids. Again, we've got a video talking about why that happens and what you can help do about that, so check out the link below.

Next, we talk about not wanting to do activity. If you've got pain in your feet or legs and often as kids we don't know how to express that or how do tell Mum and Dad that, and we often just find kids baulk or stop doing activity, so they might not want to walk with you at the end of the picnic when you guys are going for a long walk as a family, or they might not want to join their brothers and sisters in playing soccer in the backyard or at pre-school playing with the other kids. If they complain about that, want to be put in a shopping trolley, those sorts of things are all signs that there may be something else going on, and you should see a qualified podiatrist.

Now they're the signs and symptoms that you should look for if your child has problems. Growing pains or pain in their feet, tripping, falling clumsy, complaining about activity, any of those things, take them to see someone like me, a qualified podiatrist, a foot doctor who sees stacks of kids. That's right.

Again, we've got oodles of videos with links down below talking all about kids feet. Everything from how to choose the right school shoe, to choosing the right school shoe size, to heel pain, to growing pains and everything in between.

So, join me there and check it out. If you've got a question, post down below and we will get back to you. Remember, let's keep our kids happy, healthy and active. Bye for now.

School Shoes for Kids

School Shoes for Kids

School Shoes for Kids

Traditional school shoe or jogger: Does it matter?

Children spend at least 30 hours a week stomping around in their school shoes. This means that choosing the right shoe is really important for the health and comfort of your child’s feet.

"Ill-fitting school shoes can lead to a multitude of foot problems in adulthood, such as ingrown toenails, corns, callus, bunions and hammer toes. There’s also evidence to suggest that poorly fitting shoes can cause back pain," says podiatrist and founder of A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle Care, Dr Brenden.

No parent wants to put their child through undue foot pain or cause feet issues in later life. By understanding how to select the right shoes for children and following the guidance of a podiatrist, parents can help ensure they’re a step ahead when it comes to picking out the best back-to-school shoes.

With Dr Brenden's top tips, choosing the right back-to-school shoes for your child should be as easy as...well...A,B,C!

Get the best fit. It can be tempting to buy a size bigger, given how fast children’s feet grow, but the key is to allow a maximum of one thumb width between the top of the longest toe and the end of the shoe.

Heel support. Squeeze the back of the shoe to make sure the heel counter is strong and stable. This way you know you’re getting good heel support. The heel of the shoe should also be no higher than 1.5 cms.

Fasten up. Check that the fastening mechanism (laces, Velcro or buckle) holds the heel firmly in the back of the shoe. Slip-on shoes are not recommended for school wear.

Sole survivor. The soles of shoes should be fairly straight, rather than curved, as this accommodates the straightness of the foot. Also, if you attempt to ‘wring out’ the shoe by holding one hand at the heel and the other in the middle, it should not twist.

Flexibility. A flexible shoe allows for the natural movement of the foot but make sure that the shoe flexes at the ball of the foot; the shoe should NEVER bend in the middle.

A higher price tag doesn’t always mean a better shoe. Well-known brands, such as Clarks, do tend to outlast some of the cheaper brands but this is because they are well made using quality materials. Check to see that the shoe you’re considering buying is made from a high-quality, durable material.

Forget foot weights. You might be fooled into thinking that a heavy shoe is a sign of good quality. Yet a shoe that is particularly heavy is probably not going to be the most comfortable choice. A shoe should weigh no more than approximately 250 grams. That’s less than a can of soup!

Hand-me-down shoes are a no-no. Aside from the risk of fungal or bacterial infection, pre-worn shoes are likely to have molded to the shape of the previous owner’s feet. It’s also probable that the tread and heel counter have worn down, offering less support and poorer stability for your child’s feet.

Listen to your child. If your child complains of foot pain or discomfort or you notice they are walking differently, take a trip to your local podiatrist to have their feet checked.

"Parents commonly ask how long school shoes should last. Of course, this will depend on the quality of the shoe but on average they should last nine months to a year.

"However, if you notice your child has a growth spurt—check to see if their feet have outgrown their shoes. On average, children’s feet grow about half a shoe size every six months," says Dr Brenden.

Happy shoe shopping!

Want to know more about taking care of kids’ feet? Visit: www.mykidsfootdoctor.com.au

Plus, check out Dr Brenden's YouTube reviews of some of the latest (2018) school shoes on the market (Includes Ascent Eve Black, ASICS Gel Trigger, New Balance 625 KX, Target Billy Senior—to name just a few!)

Or watch Dr Brenden's Facebook live video chat on the best school shoes of 2018.