Do your feet hurt? If you are the least little bit observant you might notice how many people, especially seniors, walk like their feet are killing them. Sore feet may very well be an inevitable part of aging, but it is never too late to get help. Your feet are important; a Foot and Ankle Specialist should definitely be part of your health care team. The one thing that your mother didn’t drum into your heads was the importance of foot care. Of course, you wouldn’t have listened anyway, but if you had, you might not be tottering around with sore feet now. You take your feet for granted, until the day arrives when a quick massage and a few hours of down time doesn’t do the trick. Your feet still hurt; they hurt when you go to bed and they hurt even more when you wake up. What happened? Osteoarthritis, plantar fasciitis, fat pad atrophy, common deformities, corns and calluses…ouch. If you cringe every time you see a sweet young thing swagger around in ultra-high heels or wearing pointy toed unsupportive shoes, you are not alone. “Been there, done that,” as the saying goes, and you’ve learned the hard way that it might not have been such a good idea. Taking care of your feet involves more than reapplying a coat of nail polish from time to time. It is time, long past time, to give your feet the pampering they deserve: • Examine your feet closely. They may not be as pretty as your hands, but they are equally important. You should not be seeing cuts, calluses, blisters, or ingrown toenails. • Give your feet a good massage to ease the ache, improve circulation, and release tension. • Exercise your feet. Pick up marbles with your toes, walk on the beach, or roll a ball to ease arch strain, foot cramps or heel pain. • Keep a full arsenal of foot care toiletries at home and treat yourself to frequent pedicures. Be kind to your feet. Chose proper footgear; don’t cut corners on your shoe budget. Changes or pain in the feet and ankle are not normal. If sore feet are keeping you from getting enough exercise or are putting you at risk for falls you are putting your independence at risk.