Monday, January 24, 2011

A Quick Guide to Diabetic Foot Care

One fifth of adult diabetics are hospitalized at some point in time for major foot complications. Type 2 diabetes contributes to foot issues in several ways. Diabetics often struggle with poor circulation, which impairs one’s ability to heal wounds and fight infection. Diabetics also frequently experience neuropathy, acute nerve damage, which can diminish their ability to recognize and treat an injury. Small cuts and brittle calluses can become dangerous infections if they go unnoticed. This, in turn, can lead to hospitalization or even, in the most extreme instances, amputation. For these reasons, diabetic must be vigilant when it comes to caring for their feet. The following are the best practices for keeping diabetic feet happy and healthy.

  • If you have Type 2 Diabetes, take time everyday to care for your feet.

  • Check your feet regularly for sores, blisters, cuts, calluses, or other issues. Never ignore any sort of irritation. If you have trouble seeing your feet, consider purchasing magnifying glasses and place a mirror on the floor or ask a family member check for you.

  • Wash your feet thoroughly with lukewarm water, but refrain from soaking them for long periods of time. After washing, file down calluses and corns gently with an emery board. Coat your feet with a thin application of lotion. Avoid putting excess lotion between toes as these sorts of nooks can harbor bacteria.

  • Trim your toenails once a week and file away any jagged edges.

  • Visit the doctor at least once a month to have a formal foot check-up.

  • Always wear comfortable diabetic shoes. This is critical as most foot ailments are rooted in poorly fitting shoes. Make sure they fit correctly and have bacteria-resistant breathable fabric. Always don seamless socks to prevent blisters.

This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition, or be taken as medical advice. ALWAYS report any foot issues to your doctor immediately, especially if you notice swelling, pain, cracks, bleeding calluses, open sores, changes in color of the skin or nail, or distinct changes in skin temperature. For more information related to your unique situation, please speak with your personal physician.

About MMAR Medical Group: MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a wholesale distributor of medical devices and comfort footwear, including shoes for diabetics. Whether you are looking for hinged knee braces, back braces or elbow or wrist supports, MMAR Medical has the highest quality products and professional expertise to find you what you need.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What to Look for in a Back Brace

A back brace is simply a device that immobilizes, restricts or influences the movement of the spine. Back braces may be worn for a variety of reasons, but they’re commonly used to treat spinal injuries, muscular injuries or degenerative conditions like scoliosis. There are two primary types of back braces used to treat conditions like those previously mentioned.

The first type of back brace is the rigid/hard brace. A rigid back brace is typically constructed from a plastic mold and is form fitted to the contours of the spine. These back braces are designed to greatly restrict spine movement especially in the lumbar (lower) region, if not restrict the movement of the spine entirely. Limiting the motion of the lower spine not only helps in the healing process, but also aids in the reduction of lower back pain and discomfort. Unfortunately, rigid braces also tend to be heavy and cumbersome leading to a general feeling of discomfort for the wearer.

The second and most common type of back brace is the soft back brace which is also commonly referred to as a corset brace. The soft/corset brace typically features a flexible elastic band that limits forward movement of the spine. These types of braces are frequently worn by individuals who are required to lift heavy loads such as construction workers or movers. These braces not only limit the motion of the spine, but they also encourage proper lifting techniques utilizing the muscles of the legs rather than the back.

You may now be asking yourself, which back brace is best for me. This question is best answered by a physician or back specialist, because they will know the details of your specific condition and how to best alleviate the problem. Although rigid and soft back braces are fairly common, many health care providers are likely to recommend back strengthening exercises and stretching as alternatives to a back brace. According to numerous physicians, back bracing can potentially lead to significant muscle loss which is another reason why it’s vital to speak to a health care professional when deciding if a lower back brace is the best option for you.

About the Author: MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a premier supplier of high quality medical products including a wide selection of orthopedic braces and supports, as well as diabetic and comfort shoes. To find a quality specialty orthopedic braces, such as a hinged knee brace or lumbar brace, please visit MMAR Medical online.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Common Elbow Injuries

Many people at some point in their life will experience an elbow injury. There are countless forms of elbow injuries with varying degrees of severity, but it’s important to know the most common types of elbow injuries and their associated symptoms. The two most common forms of injuries affecting the elbow are elbow bursitis (elbow bruise) and tennis elbow.

Elbow Bursitis (Elbow Bruise)

The most common type of elbow injury is Elbow bursitis. Elbow bursitis is basically the inflammation of the bursa sac. Bursa sacs are fluid filled sacs which provide additional cushioning so as to prevent the ends of our joints from excessive wear. These fluid filled sacs are generally located around every joint in the human body. These particular bursa sacs are referred to as the Olecranon Bursas and they're located on the back of the elbow. Elbow bursitis typically occurs when the elbow is subjected to some form of blunt force trauma, such as a fall where the tip of the elbow comes into direct contact with a hard surface. Generally, if you’re suffering from elbow bursitis your elbow will be swollen and tender. However, if your elbow appears red and is warm to the touch, your elbow bursitis may be due to an infection. If your doctor suspects that your elbow may be infected, he or she may opt to remove the fluid from the swollen area and prescribe an antibiotic. If the bursitis is not from an infection it may be treated in a variety of ways. The most common treatments for elbow bursitis typically include cold therapy, rest and anti-inflammatory drugs such as Ibuprofen.

Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow is a common overuse injury that’s typically caused by a repeated twisting motion of the wrist and forearm. This condition is generally associated with playing tennis, hence the name tennis elbow, but it can be caused by any activity that involves the twisting of the arm such as when you use a screwdriver.

Some of the common signs and symptoms of tennis elbow include:

  • Elbow pain that gradually worsens

  • Pain that radiates from the outside of the elbow towards the wrist

  • An increase in elbow pain while gripping an object

  • A decrease in overall grip strength

  • Difficultly when attempting to fully extend your arm

If you’re experiencing any number of the symptoms listed above then you may have tennis elbow, but don’t worry, because there are a variety of ways to treat this condition. Tennis elbow treatments typically include heat therapy, anti-inflammatory medications and/or the use of an elbow brace or other immobilizing device. In order to prevent the injury from occurring again, an elbow strap may be worn during certain activities that aggravate the condition.

About MMAR Medical Group: MMAR Medical Group Inc. is a supplier of medical products including a wide selection of diabetic shoes, as well as orthopedic braces and supports. For top-of-the-line medical knee braces, a wide elbow brace selection and other quality braces, please visit MMAR Medical online.