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Edon Moss is one of those enterprising natives of Acklins. It seems many who came from out of the bosom of Acklins have been synonymous with proactivity. They are inclined to take charge of situations. There is this flourish that they exude. For some observers, the characteristic is too extravagant.
What can't be legitimately argued against however is their ability to attract attention. In the history of the island of Acklins, none of its natives have been as flamboyant, grounded in fanfare, as Edon Moss. Of course, he is much better known as Cassius Moss. The loquacious one was a loud and excitable voice for sports during the mid to last years of the 1960s, into the advent year of Independence (1973) and well beyond into the 1980s. In this special independence sports feature, his role in the post-1973 sports era is saluted.
During much of the 10 years prior to 1973, Moss was the biggest boxing highlight figure in the nation. There were those who were better. None though, had the flair of Cassius Moss. None could put fans into the Nassau Stadium like he did. He modeled himself in the ring after the truly great one, Cassius Clay (who later became known more famously as Muhammad Ali). Moss danced around and wore the red tassels adorned on white boxing shoes just like Clay/Ali. More importantly for Moss and the boxing fan base here in The Bahamas, he was boisterous, boastful and self-promoting just like the American heavyweight champion.
The fact that Moss did not win nearly as much as Clay/Ali did, mattered not at all. The fans came to see him get "put in his place" and certainly there were those who wanted him to succeed. His boxing career basically came to an end when Moss suffered a fractured right wrist during a bout. In surgery, a steel piece was inserted.
He made one unsuccessful attempt to return to boxing, but had to give it up. Boxing's loss was a big gain for sloop sailing. Not to be deterred by the injury that left him incapable of being a fit opponent in the ring or continuing to appropriately turn the stiff steering wheel of his truck, he opted for sloop sailing and the security business.
Needless to say, the Acklins' business zeal enabled him to succeed in security even more so than in the trucking business. As for sports, he was to blaze a new trail in sloop sailing. After him, would come 'King' Eric Gibson and Eleazor Johnson (two other Acklins Islanders) to promote sloop sailing, but it was Cassius Moss who led the way. He built the 'A' Class Sea Plague and transferred his
loquaciousness from boxing to sloop sailing. He packed Montagu Bay whenever his boat sailed.
He inspired the influx of Johnson, Gibson and many others who felt they could do just as well in boosting the sport. There were no others like Cassius Moss however. He was unique, whether with the Sea Plague or the Flying Eagle. He made his mark and is due far more credit than he gets for cementing the resurgence of sloop sailing in the country. Some of his highlights include being honored at the 1975 Family Island regatta as the leading sailing light from Acklins as a participant of the national water sport extravaganza; and capturing the Royal Race during the visit of Her Royal Highness, Queen Elizabeth II in 1895.
In the last two decades, his presence in sloop sailing has been infrequent but what he did to make the sport easily the most popular pastime in the country was immeasurable. It is fitting to pay tribute to his contributions to sports development during the past 40 years of independence. The Bahamian sporting community is indeed indebted to one Edon 'Cassius' Moss.
Twelve people will be recognized for the work they have done for the Lord during Prophetic Evangelism Network's annual conference.
Apostle Christopher Russell, Elder Anna Russell, Reverend Esther Thompson, Pastor Jason Russell, Minister Sophette Russell, Irene Dawkins, Rozella Brown, Troy Clarke, Deaconess Edris Rolle, Bishop Stanley Pinder, Elder Minalee Hanchell, and Pastor Bruce Farrington will be honored during the church's conference, an event at which they hope to create an atmosphere where people of all denominations will be able to come together to hear and heed God's word.
"It is expected to be a time of apostolic instructions, prophetic impartation, release, refreshing, deliverance and an elevation of the people of God in attendance to another level in God, based on what God is saying for this time and season," said Minister Kay Johnson, founder and president of Prophetic Evangelism Network.
Johnson, along with Apostle Brenda Pratt, pastor of Global Worship Centre in New Providence; Pastor Larry Weathers, pastor of Revolution Mark Church, San Diego, California; Apostle Christopher Russell, senior pastor at Christian Tabernacle Church, New Providence, and Prophet Michael Carter, pastor of Celebration Church, Kingston, Jamaica will speak during the conference which began on Wednesday and concludes on Saturday, March 1. The services are at the sanctuary of the Latter Glory Kingdom Embassy located on East Street north (on the left, just before Big One Shoe Store). It is being held under the theme "Truth, Dominion and a Season of Recovery, with evening services at 7:30 p.m., midday encounters from 12 noon to 2 p.m. and a Saturday morning encounter at 7 a.m.
The conference will conclude with a black and white banquet on March 1 at which time the honorees will be recognized.
Apostle Christopher Russell
Raised by his grandparents, the late Victor and Araina Russell who taught him the principals of living and the importance of obedience to God, Russell, a former Royal Bahamas Defence Force marine who has a degree in theology from Christian Life College, is described as a devoted soldier for Jesus Christ who has proven to be an invaluable asset in his leadership role as God's under-shepherd.
"He is sensitive and obedient to the voice of God, his commander-in-chief and is known to seek direction through fasting and praying before he attempts to fulfill the task of his master," said Pastor Johnson.
Russell has held several positions in the church before being called to lead as pastor of The Christian Tabernacle Church.
Elder Anna Russell
His wife, Elder Anna Russell will also be honored for recognizing the fact that God called her to preach the Gospel, and that she did it.
"From a young child [Anna] always had an urge to be in the house of God not knowing that the hands of the Lord were upon her, she pursued God although unaware of the call," said Pastor Johnson. "Elder Anna believes as the Father had sent Christ unto the world, that Christ has now sent her. She believes that God has called her to preach the gospel to the meek, to the bind the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, to open the prison to those that are bound, and to bring total deliverance to his people."
Russell who holds an associate degree in theology believes in putting God first.
Reverend Esther Thompson
Reverend Esther Lee Dawkins
Thompson was raised by her parents, the late Bishop Norris Dawkins and Irene Gertrude Dawkins, who taught her the principles of living and the importance of being obedient to God, and as such, she is sensitive and obedient to the voice of God.
"She is known to seek direction through fasting and praying before she attempts to fulfill the task of her master," said Johnson. "She is a vessel of honor that truly loves the Lord and has a great passion for the justice of those who cannot defend themselves."
Thompson who has an associate degree in Christian Education and Theology has held many positions in the church. She currently serves as one of the associate pastors of the Voice of Deliverance Disciple Centre.
Pastor Jason and Minister Sophette Russell
Pastor Jason and Minister Sophette Russell are being honored for their many years of involvement in community development in Old Bight, Cat Island. They founded Tabernacle of God Outreach International Ministry.
"Irene Dawkins, a straw vendor by profession is known to be a lady who really loves the Lord and serves faithfully at the Greater Bethel Cathedral. In addition, she held the position of vice-president of the 'Unity Fellowship Prayer Band' the official prayer group of the Bay Street Straw Market," said Johnson.
She described Dawkins as a woman who has been a mother to many people that she did not give birth to.
Apostle Rozella Brown
Apostle Rozella Brown, the pastor and founder of Tabernacle of Deliverance Outreach Ministries Inc. in Ocala, Florida, will also be recognized during the conference. She believes that as a pastor she is a servant first with a mission to release believers to the work of the ministry and to not only lead by example in both preaching and teaching, but to also challenge and equip believers to fulfill the great commission.
Brown said she has no greater joy than ministering as the Spirit leads and in seeing believers grow spiritually empowered to stand for God.
Troy Clarke is presently pursuing an advanced Degree in Biblical Studies and Theology from Beacon. He has completed Levels 1-3 of the Myles Munroe Leadership Mentoring Program.
He is the president/CEO of the Destiny Group of Companies providing professional services in training, personal development and consultancy and is the founding president of the National L.E.A.D. Institute, a community correctional organization in The Bahamas. Based on the best practices he adopted through education and experience, Clarke's mission is to establish the National L.E.A.D. Institute with innovative programs that integrate local approaches to similarly structured, successful programs throughout the United States and Canada. To this end he established the Eagles Academy, an alternative to school for at-risk males and juvenile offenders.
Clarke believes that all men fall, but the great ones get back up; and that you do not drown by falling into the water, but that you drown by staying there. He also strongly believes that it takes a community to raise a man.
Deaconess Edris Rolle
In every generation, God raises up extraordinary people who understand the value of hard work, and they never hesitate to express gratitude along the way -- Edris Rolle is said to be such a person.
The daughter of Elder Clarence and Elva Ellis of Bailey Town, Bimini, she accepted the Lord as her personal savior at an early age and became a member of Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church where she held various offices over the years. She currently serves at the church's secretary and leader of the church praise team.
Elder Minalee Hanchell
Described as a true servant of God, Elder Minalee Hanchell has participated in numerous mission trips throughout The Bahamas and around the world. The executive director of Great Commission Ministries International, which focuses on the needs of the poor and homeless, Hanchell has ministered in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the United States.
She also serves as the director of "Save the Children" club and as the director of the Miss Gospel Bahamas Pageant. She is a board member of "Hands for Hunger" and a member of the Bahamas Feeding Network and the Bahamas Committee for Families.
Pastor Bruce Farrington
From the moment Pastor Bruce Farrington received his call to the ministry of God, it is said he became a dedicated soldier, preaching and teaching the gospel of Christ.
He joined with his uncle, Cecil Leadon who brought the Pentecostal faith to Andros in 1955, and was appointed assistant pastor of the Little Power House, a position he held for 42 years before he decided the people needed somewhere bigger and better to continue their weekly fellowship. He spearheaded the building of the Greater Power House Church, which was completed in 1978.
Due to the fact that Pastor Leadon was up in age, Farrington took on the job of the daily administration of the church. He believes in the saying that if he could help somebody as he travels along, that he knows his living would not be in vain.
A bunion is a localized area of enlargement of the inner portion of the joint at the base of the big toe. This enlargement represents extra bone formation combined with a misalignment of the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint at the base of the big toe. The normal straight position of the big toe becomes distorted causing the big toe to turn outward, bending toward the smaller toes and causing a painful bump on the foot. Since this joint carries a lot of the body's weight while walking, bunions can cause extreme pain if left untreated. The MTP joint itself may become stiff and sore, making wearing shoes difficult or impossible. A less common bunion is located at the joint, at the base of the smallest (fifth) toe. This bunion is called a tailor's bunion.
Who develops bunions?
Bunions occur most commonly in women. Some studies report that bunions occur nearly 10 times more frequently in women than men. Bunions are also more prevalent in people who wear shoes than in barefoot people.
How do you get a bunion?
Bunions form when the normal balance of the forces on the joints and tendons of the foot becomes disrupted. This leads to instability in the joint and results in the deformity after years of abnormal motion and pressure over the first metatarsophalangeal joint. This faulty foot mechanics caused by the way we walk, inherited foot type, shoes, or other sources, results in bone and joint deformities such as bunions.
Although bunions tend to run in families, it is the foot type and foot mechanics that are passed down, not the actual bunion. There are genetic factors that predispose one to developing bunions, especially when they occur in young people.
It has been suggested that tight-fitting shoes, especially high-heels and narrow-toed shoes increase the risk for bunion formation which explains the high prevalence of bunions in women. Other causes include foot injuries, neuromuscular disorders, or congenital deformities.
People who suffer from flat feet or low arches, have arthritic or inflammatory joint disease, are also more prone to developing bunions. Occupations that place stress on the feet -- such as ballet dancing -- also increase risk of developing the condition.
Bunions may or may not have symptoms. A common symptom is foot pain when walking or wearing shoes that is relieved by resting or taking off the shoes. Bunions can cause marked pain associated with swelling of the soft tissues, redness, and local tenderness. A small, fluid-filled sac called a bursa can also form next to the joint. Other symptoms of a bunion may include a firm bump on the foot, at the base of the big toe, corns or other skin irritations caused by the overlapping of the first and second toes, restricted or painful motion of the big toe joint and difficulty fitting and wearing shoes.
What you can do for relief
Self-treatment will not take the bunion away, but can give you good relief from its symptoms. Changes in the type of shoes worn can definitely help. Wear shoes that are more squared or rounded with a wide and deep toe box (front of the shoe) to accommodate the bunion. You can apply commercial, non-medicated bunion pads around the bony prominence to relieve the pressure. If your bunion becomes inflamed and painful, apply ice packs several times a day to reduce swelling. Avoid high-heeled shoes over two inches tall and see your podiatrist if the pain persists.
Conservative treatment for bunions
Treatment options vary with the type and severity of each bunion. Identifying the deformity early in its development is important for early treatment and to avoid surgery. Nonsurgical treatments involve simply resting the foot by avoiding excessive walking and wearing loose (wider) shoes or sandals that can relieve the pain of bunions. Sneakers are more comfortable and provide an advantage over high-heeled shoes that push the big toe outward further, making the deformity worse. The primary goal of early treatment options is to relieve the pressure on the bunion and slow the progression of the joint deformity. The podiatrist may recommend all or any of the following treatments:
Padding & taping -- Padding the bunion minimizes pain and allows the patient to continue a normal, active life.
Medication -- Anti-inflammatory drugs and cortisone injections are often prescribed to ease the acute pain and inflammations caused by the bunion.
Physical therapy -- Ultra sound therapy can provide relief of the inflammation and pain from the bunion. Stretching exercises can also reduce tension on the first metatarophalangeal joint. A bunion splint is usually worn at night and can provide further relief and slow the deformity.
Orthotics -- Shoe insoles may be useful in controlling foot function and may reduce symptoms and prevent worsening of the deformity.
When these strategies are effective in relieving symptoms, patients should avoid irritating the bunion again by optimizing footwear and foot care.
When to see the podiatrist
If you have a bunion you should see a podiatrist at the first indication of pain or discomfort. If untreated, bunions tend to get larger and more painful.
When early treatments fail for those bunions that cause persistent pain, surgery is the option to remove the bunion. The surgical procedure is called a bunionectomy and is necessary to relieve pressure and realign the joint. Several surgical procedures are available that will remove the bony enlargement, restore the normal alignment of the toe joint, and relieve pain. Recuperation after surgery takes time -- up to several weeks, and some swelling and discomfort may occur for sometime following the surgery.
For more information or to see a podiatrist visit Bahamas Foot Centre Rosetta Street 325-2996, Bahamas Surgical Associates, Albury Lane 394-5820 or the Foot & Ankle Institute, Dean's Lane 326-5402 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.apma.org.
Women who love to wear high heels, especially shoes with pointed toes, this is for you. Especially if you have noticed the bending of your toes, corns or pale or darker spots on the toes. If you have to grin and bear it when wearing your favorite high heel and can't wait to take them off because your little toe is "killing" you, you may have hammertoes.
Hammertoe is a contracture (bending) of one or both joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth (little) toes. This abnormal bending can put pressure on the toe when wearing shoes, causing problems to develop.
Hammertoes usually start out as mild bending or deformities and get worse over time. In the early stages, hammertoes are flexible and the toe can be straightened out to its original shape. But if left untreated, hammertoes can become stiff or rigid and will stay in the bent position permanently.
Hammertoes seldom get better without some kind of intervention. Because of the progressive nature of hammertoes, they should be treated early.
Hammertoe is caused by an imbalance in the muscle and tendon around the toe. Because of the way some people walk, mechanical (structural) changes can occur in the foot leading to this imbalance and bending of the toe.
Hammertoes are often made worse by shoes that don't fit properly. It may also result if a long toe is forced into a cramped position when a tight shoe is worn. In some people, hammertoes are inherited and occasionally, they can develop from an earlier trauma to the toe.
Common symptoms of hammertoes include:
o Pain or irritation of the affected toe when wearing shoes - especially tight or pointed toe shoes.
o The tops of the toes may have skin that is darker that the rest of the toe. Sometimes, the area may be lighter in color that the rest of the toe especially if medicated corn pads were used.
o Corns and calluses (a buildup of skin) on the toe, between two toes, or on the ball of the foot. Corns are caused by constant friction against the shoe. They may be soft or hard, depending upon their location.
o Inflammation, redness, or a burning sensation.
o Contracture (permanent bending) of the toe.
o In more severe cases of hammertoe, open sores may form.
To diagnose a hammertoe the podiatrist will obtain a history of your symptoms and examine your foot. During the physical exam, the podiatrist may try to straighten and manipulate your toes to study the contractures. In addition, x-rays of the foot will be taken to determine the extent of deformity in the toe. Hammertoes are progressive so they will not go away by themselves and will usually get worse over time. Some hammertoes progress quickly while others take a longer time.
There are a variety of treatment options for hammertoe. The podiatrist will choose a treatment based on the severity of your hammertoe and how it is impacting your feet and life. These may include any or all of the following.
o Padding corns and calluses. Your podiatrist can provide or prescribe pads designed to protect corns from irritation. There are also over-the-counter pads that can be used to avoid the medicated types. Medicated pads are generally not recommended because they may contain a small amount of acid that can be harmful. They can cause the color to change on the toe (darker or lighter) and may cause ulcers/sores to the toes. This is especially true for people with diabetes. They must never use medicated corn pads.
o Changes in shoe wear. Avoid shoes with pointed toes, shoes that are too short or shoes with high heels. All these conditions can force your toe against the front of the shoes and encourage or aggravate hammer toes. Instead, wear comfortable shoes with a deep, roomy toe box and heels no higher than two inches.
o Orthotic devices. A custom orthotic device placed in your shoe may help control the muscle/tendon imbalance and prevent or delay the hammertoes.
o Injection therapy. Corticosteroid injections are sometimes used to ease pain and inflammation caused by hammertoe.
o Medications. Oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, may be recommended to reduce pain and inflammation in the toe.
o Splinting/strapping. Splints or small straps may be applied by the podiatrist to realign and straighten the bent toe.
When surgery is required
In some cases, when the hammertoe has become more rigid and painful, when the conservative treatment has not helped or when an open sore has developed, surgery is needed to treat the hammertoe.
The podiatrist will choose the best procedure to fix your hammertoe based on the extent of the deformity, the number of toes involved, your age, your activity level and other factors about your general health. The procedure can be performed to fix one or multiple toes at the same time. The recovery time will vary, depending on the procedure or procedures performed but can be between three to six weeks.
oFor more information on hammertoes visit www.foothealth.com or www.apma.org. To see a podiatrist visit Bahamas Foot Centre, Rosetta Street telephone, 325-2996 or Bahamas Surgical Associates, Albury Lane, telephone 394-5820.
The American Podiatric Medical Association heel pain survey, revealed that 45 percent of Americans attributed their heel pain to wearing uncomfortable or ill-fitting shoes. This is due to excessive pronation which can create an abnormal amount of stretching and pulling on the plantar fascia on the bottom of the feet with every step.
This is the season to be merry, however it is often not a merry time for the feet. Lots of holiday shopping usually means lots of walking and even sometimes running. In addition, it is time for lots of standing while cooking, during parties, at church and even at Junkanoo. In addition most people, especially women, will be wearing new shoes during these activities. All of these factors can add up to painful feet!
A survey by the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) showed that painful feet are a common occurrence during the holiday madness, and the number one way women soothe their aching feet is by moisturizing them. Women admitted that stretching and massaging their feet is also on the list of favorite foot fixers. Here are more ways to keep your feet merry this holiday season.
Exercise your toes: Toe cramping is common due to long hours of walking, often in tight shoes. Avoid toe cramping by raising your toes, pointing and curling them for five seconds in each direction, then repeat 10 times. You can do this several times a day and you won't even break a sweat! But your toes will get relief.
Massage your feet: Women like it because it works! Massaging releases tension, increases circulation and rejuvenates the skin after a long day on your feet. Get out the lotion and rub those toes. Better yet, get a spouse, child or friend to do it. You can also use a foot bath or tub to massage the feet. Fill the tub with warm water and your favorite fragrant moisturizing soap and let the jets massage your feet. People who are diabetic should not soak or use hot water on their feet.
Elevate your legs: Long hours of standing, walking and evening sitting can cause the feet to swell, especially at the end of the day. Reduce swelling by elevating the legs, by sitting or lying down and lifting the legs above your heart.
Rotate your ankles: Because of swelling and long hours of standing and walking, the ankles can get tired and ache. Relax your feet by rotating your ankles, turn your ankle up toward your head, down toward the floor then right and left, slowly five times. This loosens up the ankle joints and increases blood flow to the area.
Wear smart shoes: For the most part during your holiday activities like shopping and cooking, wear sensible, comfortable shoes and avoid high heels! Save the high heels for actual dressed-up events. If you know you will be on your feet all day, wear comfortable shoes with arch support and a padded sole.
When purchasing shoes, do so in the afternoon and be sure to try them on and walk in them in the store to be sure they fit properly. Do not wear shoes that don't fit, they will cause blisters and other injury to the feet.
For people who already have problems with their feet, for example heel pain, Plantar fasciitis or even an injury to the feet, it is vital to follow the podiatrist's instructions and continue to wear the prescribed footwear during the holiday. It will prevent relapse and the return of pain and other symptoms after the holiday.
Prevent injury: It is important to not over-do it and prevent any injury to your feet while rushing to complete holiday activities. Pay particular attention to footwear and walking surfaces. Drinking alcohol and other substances also increases your risk of injury. Continue your exercise routine during the holiday season. Be sure to stretch before and after exercising. Wear new sports shoes cautiously, by gradually increasing the time your wear them each day until you adjust.
If you follow these tips and suggestions you can prevent injury and ensure that your feet are also merry during this holiday season. However, foot injuries and pain including fractures, ankle sprains, blisters, ingrown toenails, etc. are common foot complaints during and after the holiday. If you do get an injury or develop foot pain, see a podiatrist as soon as possible. Remember the reason for the season. Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year.
For more information visit www.apma.org or to see a podiatrist visit the Bahamas Foot Centre, Rosetta Street - 325-2996 or Bahamas Surgical Associates, Albury Lane - 394-5820.
Our feet bear the brunt of all the stress we endure during our daily working life. Prolonged standing, walking, operating machinery, wearing high heels, carrying heavy objects and slippery surfaces are just some of the many dangers our feet are exposed to in the workplace everyday.
Every year, it is estimated that 2 million work days are lost due to complaints and disorders in the lower limbs, however many of these sick days can be prevented. Studies show that about 80 percent of adults will experience some foot complaints during their lifetime. This can vary from aches and pains, swelling, corns, calluses, injuries, fungal infections, varicose veins and more.
These common foot problems occur both on and off the job. However, there is no doubt that some work-related factors can lead to or aggravate foot problems, especially jobs that require long periods of standing or that put the feet at risk.
It is recommended that workers spend no more than 30 percent of their working day standing, however there are many jobs where workers stand for longer periods. Workers who are required to spend too much time on their feet are at increased risk of pain and discomfort in the feet, legs, hips and lower back. Standing for long hours, day-after-day, not only tires the worker's feet but can also cause permanent damage. It can cause the joints and bones of the feet to become misaligned causing flat feet, inflammation that can later lead to arthritis, and damage to the veins in the legs leading to pain, swelling, varicose veins and even ulcers. Prolonged standing can damage joints, causing swelling of the legs, and result in a range of problems for the feet, including bunions and corns and heel spurs.
Worksite accidents also result in a significant number of injuries to the feet and lower legs including sprains, strains and fractures. Foot injuries account for 15 to 20 percent of all disabling injuries. While not all of these are the result of work activities, a large proportion occur due to the conditions feet are exposed to at work.
Our feet are exposed to many dangers at work but fortunately the risk can be avoided or removed if employees and employers take simple, straight forward steps to protect the feet at work. Here are the recommendations to prevent foot injuries at work.
o Wear the right shoes for work: Prolonged standing, hard flooring and inappropriate footwear are very common working conditions for the feet. Workers should wear shoes that are appropriate to their occupation, working environment, and foot type. Improper footwear can cause or aggravate existing foot problems. Footwear that fits poorly or is in need of repair also contributes to foot discomfort and injury. If safety or special footwear is required for the job (e.g. steel toe boots) employers must ensure that employees have the correct shoes and are not allowed to work without them. In many worksites such equipment are supplied by the employer at no cost to the worker.
High heels are the favorite work footwear for many women but should not be because they throw the body weight onto the balls of the feet, which may lead to calluses, painful bunions, corns, neuromas, foot and back pains. The position of the foot in narrow width high heels can cause the ankle to become unstable, resulting in ankle sprains.
Wearing high-heels for long periods may cause the calf muscles to become shortened and tight over time. Backless (sling back) high heel shoes force the toes to claw as you walk, straining the muscles. To prevent this, two-inch high heels are recommended for everyday use. Calf stretches can help to keep the feet supple and maintain a good range of motion to the ankle joint. It is best to vary your heel heights from day-to-day; one day wearing low heels, and the next day slightly higher heels rather than high heels at all times. Wearing shoes with a strap or lace over the instep is better than slip-ons because they improve the fit and help stop your foot from sliding forward in your shoes. Comfortable, well structured, sensible and properly fitted footwear is essential to maintain good foot health and prevent minor foot ailments and injuries at work. Proper footwear is important, not only for foot comfort but also for one's general well-being and for you to have a good and productive day at work.
o Properly fitting work shoes: It is important to ensure that the safety shoe is appropriate for the task for which it is intended. The upper should be made from natural materials such as leather or a breathable man-made fabric. Toe box (front of the shoe) should be rounded or squared and deep enough to prevent rubbing, allowing the toes to wriggle. Insole can be inserted to provide padding and absorption. The heel should fit snugly on the foot, stopping the heel from slipping out of the shoe with each step you take. Heels should have a broad base and be no higher than two inches if they are worn for a long time. The sole should be strong and flexible with shock absorption to cushion the jolts of walking on hard surfaces. Laces, buckles or velcro should be used to secure the foot in the shoe.
o Foot safe work sites: In addition to the footwear, the work surfaces also have an impact on the feet at work. Hard, unyielding floors like concrete are the least comfortable surface to work on.
Wood, cork, carpeting, or rubber -- anything that provides some flexibility -- is gentler on workers' feet. Footwear with thick, insulating and shock-absorbing insoles can alleviate some of this discomfort. Working on a hard floor can feel like a hammer, pounding the heel at every step. Slippery floors can be hazardous resulting in slips and falls, ankle sprains or even fractures. Employers should make sure that floors are kept clean and dry or non-skid floors should be installed. Special anti-slip flooring or mats can also reduce slipping accidents. Stairs is a common site for foot injuries at work. To prevent these injuries make sure you are wearing the right shoes and paying attention when taking the stairs, the stairs are well lit with rails and are dry.
o Prevent workplace injuries at work: Most occupations have different footwear requirements.
Such requirements should be followed at all times to prevent injuries. Even if there are not specific foot wear guidelines, we recommend well-fitting, supportive shoe with moderate heels. If possible sneakers can fit the bill and they come in all styles and colors.
Remember, foot pain is not normal, it tells us something is wrong. If you have foot pain especially at work, see a podiatrist for a complete exam and treatment to get you pain free.
o For more information or to see a podiatrist visit Bahamas Foot Centre Rosetta Street, telephone 325-2996, Bahamas Surgical Associates, Albury Lane telephone 394-5820 or email at email@example.com or visit www.apma.org.
Toenail fungus is not just a cosmetic problem, but anToenail fungus is not just a cosmetic problem, but an infection of the bed and plate underlying the surface of a nail. Fungal nail infection, a condition called Onychomycosis (ON-i-ko-my-KO-sis), is caused primarily by organisms called dermatophytes. It's extraordinarily common, afflicting more than 35 million people in the United States alone. However, some 90 percent of them have yet to see a doctor for treatment. It is estimated that 2.5 million Americans see a podiatrist annually for treatment of toenail fungus, however, many more are infected but never seek help because they consider toenail fungus just a cosmetic problem.
Toenail fungus affects 2 to 18 percent of all people worldwide and 3 to 5 percent of people in the United States. It is relatively rare in children, affecting only about one out of every 200 people younger than 18. The likelihood of getting toenail fungus increases with age and up to 48 percent of people have at least one infected toe by the time they reach age 70.
Almost anyone who wears tight-fitting shoes or tight hosiery is more likely to develop toenail fungus, especially if they also practice poor foot hygiene. Another risk factor is wearing layers of toenail polish for a long time, which doesn't allow the nail to breathe. Toenail fungi may spread from foot to foot on the floors of showers and locker rooms. More often the condition also tends to affect people with chronic illnesses, such as diabetes or HIV, as well as people with circulatory problems that decrease blood flow to the toes. However, many people have no identifiable risk factors for getting toenail fungus.
Of all the toenails, those on the big toe and little toe are the most likely to develop a toenail fungus. This is because the big toe and little toe are constantly exposed to the mild trauma or friction from the sides of shoes. This trauma allows the fungus to enter the nail. Once these tiny organisms find their way under a nail, they begin to multiply. Ironically, the nail itself provides a protective environment for the fungus to grow and thrive. The toenails are vulnerable to infection, since they spend much of their day in a dark, warm, and often moist environment in shoes and socks. This is also the environment where the fungus grows best.
When fungal nail infection begins to take hold it can cause the nail to change color, often to a yellow/green, brown or darker color. Fungal debris may collect under the nail, causing a foul smell. The nail may thicken and become flaky. Thick toenails may cause discomfort in shoes and make standing and walking uncomfortable for some people. They can also cause ulcers to the nail bed which may not heal especially in diabetics. Moreover, because a fungal nail infection is an infection, it can spread to other nails, and possibly to other people. Something as ordinary as an emery board can carry the fungal organisms from an infected nail to an uninfected one. That's why it is so important to seek treatment as soon as you think you have an infection. Your podiatrist may take clippings off your nail to send to the lab to confirm the diagnosis before he/she starts treating you.
How do you get it?
Fungal nail infection has little to do with personal cleanliness. Something as simple as banging a toe or finger, trimming your nails too closely, or wearing tight shoes is enough to weaken the nail and expose the underlying nail bed to infection. The fungus that causes the infection resides in many common places -- locker rooms, swimming pools, showers, even your garden. You can also contract the infection while getting a manicure or pedicure, from unsterilized instruments that have been used on others with the infection. Some people are more susceptible to fungal nail infections.
People with chronic diseases such as diabetes, circulatory problems, and immunological deficiencies (such as AIDS/HIV infection) and the elderly are at increased risk. Moreover, fungal nail infection appears to be more prevalent in those with a history of athlete's foot (a fungal infection of the skin) and people whose feet sweat a lot.
How do you treat it?
Fungal nail infection won't go away by itself. There are almost as many home remedies as there are infections, but they do not work. The most effective treatments are only available from your doctor and may include one or a combination of topical, oral, laser or surgical methods. Fungal infection can be treated and cured but it takes time, around 10 to 12 months based in the severity of the infection.
What you can do
During your treatment, you should start to see a new healthy nail begin to grow from the base of the nail bed. This is a sign that the treatment is working. The old infected nail should begin to grow out and can be clipped away over several months.
Proper foot hygiene and regular inspection of the feet and toes are the first lines of defense against fungal nails. Here are a few steps you can take during and after your treatment to better care for your toenails.
o Washing the feet with soap and water, and remembering to dry them thoroughly, is the best way to prevent an infection. Clean and dry feet resist disease.
o Shower shoes should be worn when possible in public areas.
o Shoes, socks, or hosiery should be changed more than once daily.
o Toenails should be clipped straight across so that the nail does not extend beyond the tip of the toe.
o Wear shoes that fit well and are made of materials that breathe such as leather or canvas.
o Avoid wearing excessively tight hosiery, which promote moisture.
o Socks made of synthetic fiber tend to "wick" away moisture faster than cotton or wool socks.
o Use a separate pair of clippers and file on the infected nail, to avoid spreading the infection to other nails. Disinfect instruments used for nail care and pedicures.
o Don't apply polish to nails suspected of being infected with a fungus.
o Consider replacing old footwear, as this could be contaminated with fungal spores.
o Have athlete's foot infection treated with antifungal medicine as soon as possible to avoid spreading the infection to your nails.
For more information or to see a podiatrist visit Bahamas Foot Centre, Rosetta Street or telephone 325-2996, Bahamas Surgical Associates, Albury Lane, or telephone 394-5820 or the Foot & Ankle Institute, Dean's Lane, or telephone 326-5402 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.apma.org.
The foot is the foundation of our entire body. Pain in the foot indicates that there is something wrong with either the structures or functioning of the foot. Foot pain should not be ignored. In fact, it is said that when your feet hurt, you hurt all over your body. How, when and where the pain occurs depends on what's causing the pain. When there is pain, the body reacts by changing the way it functions; it walks and stands differently, in an effort to decrease the pain. This change may prevent the normal movement and cause more injury to that foot or the other foot.
Causes of foot pain
Foot pain may be caused by many different diseases, biomechanical conditions or injuries. Acute trauma, disease, or combinations of these problems are the most common causes of foot pain, seen in sports and workplace environments that require a lot of physical activity. Poor biomechanical alignment and wearing tight shoes or very high heels may lead to foot pain.
Sprains, injuries to the ligaments of the foot, occur when ligaments are overstretched. Acute Injuries such as sprains, muscle strains, bruises, fractures and loosening of ligaments in the joints of the foot may also lead to foot pain. The foot muscles' bursa and fascia can be strained by over-stretching, overusing, overloading, or bruising; a cut may also cause foot pain. Achilles tendonitis is also a common and painful injury. Fractures or broken bones are painful and are caused by a single blow or twist to the foot, or by repeated trauma in the case of a stress fracture. The long term effects of foot deformities like bunions, and hammer toes, irritation of nerves and joints, damage to the skin and swelling can also lead to foot pain. Disease caused by viruses, fungi, and bacteria may also be the sources of foot pain.
Pain and tenderness are the immediate indicators that something is wrong in a part of the foot. The onset of pain, whether suddenly or over time, is an important indicator of the cause of the problem. The following questions are also important to answer for a doctor to treat the pain correctly: Where is the pain? When did it start? Is there pain with movement of the affected area? Does walking or standing on the foot make it worse? Does it change the way you walk? Is the pain there all the time or does it come and go? Is it better or worse at any particular time of the day or during any particular activity? For example, sharp sudden pain to the foot after twisting may indicate a sprain or fracture, whereas pain and redness at the edge of a toenail may indicate an ingrown toenail or numbness and burning pain may indicate neuropathy.
Proper evaluation and diagnosis of foot pain is essential in planning a treatment. A good general guideline is to compare the injured side to the uninjured side. The doctor will ask you several questions to determine how the problem began. It can be helpful to tell the physician about how and when it started, how it affects you, when it bothers you and what you may or may not have done to make the pain better or worse. A physical exam will be conducted to determine the cause of the pain, and if there are any other injuries. Depending on the pain, the feet will be physically and visually examined at rest, with weight, and non-weight-bearing movement. The foot and arch will be touched and manipulated and inspected to identify obvious deformities, tender spots, or any differences in the bones and shape of the foot and arch. Then the muscles and joints of your foot will be tested. The nerves in the foot will be tested to make sure no injury has occurred there. An X-ray, MRI, or bone scan of the foot and arch may be taken to determine if there are injuries or abnormalities of the bone and/or soft tissues.
When you first notice discomfort or pain in the area, you can try to treat yourself at home with rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) to relieve the symptoms. Rest will allow the tissues to heal by preventing any further stress to the affected area. Crutches should be used if you have difficulty putting weight on the foot. Using ankle and foot supports may also provide rest, comfort, and support to the affected area. Ice should be applied to the area for no longer than 20 minutes. The ice may be put in a plastic bag or wrapped in a towel but not directly on the skin. If more discomfort occurs, stop icing immediately. Compression and elevation will help prevent any swelling of the affected tissues.
Over-the-counter medications can also be used to reduce discomfort and pain. There are two types of over-the-counter medications that may help with the pain and swelling of foot pain. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) will help reduce the pain, while a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin), or naproxen (Naprosyn) can help lessen the pain as well as reduce the inflammatory response. Caution should be taken when using these drugs; dosage should not exceed the labeled directions, and medications may need to be taken with food.
When to seek help for foot pain
When the pain begins to interfere with your daily activities, or if you cannot perform your activities without pain, you should consider seeking medical attention. Other signs that you should seek medical care are if the area looks deformed, you have loss of function, change of sensation, a large amount of swelling with the pain, prolonged change of skin or toenail, the affected area becomes warmer than the
surrounding area or if symptoms increase or worsen.
Treatments are directed toward the specific cause of the pain. Once the severity and cause of foot pain is determined treatment can begin to correct and or treat the cause.
Therapies may be used to treat foot pain, including electrical medical devices such as ultrasound, various forms of electrical stimulation, LED light therapy (laser), and/or manual therapies to reduce pain and increase circulation to the area to promote healing.
The podiatrist may order rest or modification of your exercise routine to maintain your fitness level, such as doing alternate activities that can be performed so the injured area is not made worse. For example, instead of running, he or she may suggest that you cycle, use elliptical trainers, step machines, swim or use ski machines to minimize impact and allow you to maintain and improve your fitness.
Corrective prophylactic measures
New shoes or the replacement of shoe insoles or orthotics can help prevent and treat foot pain. Proper footwear fitting, including lacing and socks are important when purchasing shoes. Additional supports can be added to the shoes such as heel pads or cushions, arch supports, and various wedges to help maintain the foot in a proper position. Remember, athletic shoes wear out after a while. A good rule of thumb is to replace your shoes every six months or more often if you wear them a lot.
Muscle strengthening and flexibility
You may be given exercises to increase the strength, flexibility and stability of the affected area, and to correct muscles that may not be balanced. Flexibility helps to make muscles stronger and less likely to be injured.
The podiatrist will also order medications to control inflammation or symptoms. In some cases, based on the cause of the pain, surgery may be necessary.
To prevent injuries and pain, a general physical exam and a foot exam may be recommended before starting any exercise program. If you have conditions such as gout, diabetes, certain types of arthritis, and neuropathies, they should be treated before beginning any exercise program. If you have had an injury to your foot or ankle, it is best to have the area evaluated by the podiatrist to get the okay to resume exercise. Proper technique and a gradual increase in activity can help you develop good biomechanics that can prevent foot injury and pain. Properly fitting shoes and proper foot hygiene can also prevent foot pain.
Remember, if you feel pain when working out or walking, try decreasing the intensity of the workout or walking less. If the pain persists, stop immediately and see a podiatrist to discover the source of the pain. Pushing through pain often results in injury. Foot pain is not normal and is there to tell you something is wrong. Get help.
As we enjoy the long hot summer, we think only of long strolls on the beach and the feel of sand through our toes. We never think of the dangers that might be lurking outside with all that sun, sand and sea. From playing sports on the beach and swimming, to walking in sandals or open-toed shoes, many summer activities put persons at risk for foot injuries and infections. These can be even more serious for persons with diabetes. Here are some simple tips as to how to protect your feet and prevent injuries, so you can stay on the beach and safely enjoy your summer outdoors.
o Do not walk barefoot. Walking bare foot puts your feet at risk for many injuries and infections including punctures, sunburn, as well as microorganisms that cause plantar warts, athlete's foot, ringworm, and other infections. Something as minor as stubbing a toe on a coffee table or bumping a soccer ball at the park can lead to a serious foot ulcer.
While at the beach, seashells, sharp stones, glass or other debris from the ocean can puncture the skin and cause serious infections that can be made worse by diabetes. Walking barefoot on the hot pavement is especially dangerous and can lead to severe burns. To prevent injuries and protect your feet, always wear closed-toe beach shoes or sandals everywhere, including around the pool, to the beach, in the locker room and even when walking on carpeting or in the bathroom of your hotel room.
Some activities or sports at the beach may require different types of footwear to be worn. Always wear the shoes designed for each activity. To be safe, pack an extra pair of sneakers or protective water shoes. If your shoes get wet, they should be dried out completely before you wear them again to prevent bacterial or fungal infections.
o Use sunscreen on your feet. Spending long hours in the sun can expose your feet to harmful rays that increase your risk of sun burns and skin cancer. Your feet are just as much at risk for skin cancer as the rest of your body. However, according to the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, persons often do not apply sunscreen to their feet when they apply sunscreen to the rest of their body. Many don't realize skin cancer can occur on the feet from unprotected sun exposure, and not applying sunscreen to the area. Skin cancer on the foot, including squamous or basal cell carcinoma and melanoma often go unnoticed because people don't check their feet as diligently as they check other body parts. To lessen your risk for sunburns and skin cancer, remember to apply sunscreen all over your feet, especially on the top and front of ankles, and even the toes. Don't forget to reapply after you've been in the pool or sea.
o Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water throughout the day while you are in the sun or on the beach. This will not only help with overall health, but will also minimize any foot swelling caused by the heat.
oExercise your feet. Even though you may be on vacation or enjoying the summer, continue your exercise routine or at least get some activity. While sitting you can keep the blood flowing in your feet with periodic ankle flexes, toe wiggles and calf stretches.
o Inspect your feet daily, especially during the summer. Inspect your feet every day before putting on your shoes and after taking them off. If you are not flexible enough to see underneath your feet, using a mirror can be helpful. Check the sides of your feet, between the toes and at the heel. Diabetics should always inspect the inside of the shoe before putting them on for debris that may rub and injure their feet. Even a small pebble or sand can create a sore that may not cause pain, but can lead to a more serious ulcer or infection if not treated promptly.
o In case of minor foot complaints, be prepared with handy on-the-go foot care supplies to care for your foot. These may include sandals to wear by the pool, spa, in the hotel room or even airport security check points; sterile bandages, for covering minor cuts and scrapes; antibiotic cream which can be used to treat any skin injury; moisturizing cream or lotion, to hydrate feet; blister pads or moleskin, to protect against blisters; Anti-inflammatories to ease tired, swollen feet; Toenail clippers to keep toenails trimmed; Emery board to file rough edges or broken nails; Pumice stone to soften callused skin; Sunscreen to protect against the scorching sun and aloe vera or silvadene cream to relieve sunburns.
Following these simple tips can help protect your feet from the heat and prevent injury to your feet, allowing you to have an enjoyable and uneventful time at the beach. If you injure your foot or ankle while on vacation or at the beach, seek professional medical attention from a podiatrists right away. The earlier injuries are treated the faster they can heal and prevent more serious complications.
o For more information, email me at email@example.com or visit www.apma.org or www.foothealth.org. To see a podiatrist, visit Bahamas Foot Centre on Rosetta Street or call 325-2996 or visit Bahamas Surgical Associates on Albury Lane or call 394-5820 for an appointment.