Many of us have danced or have kids who have danced. Dancing is a fun, great activity for the mind and the body. A dancer’s most important piece of equipment is dance shoes. Sometimes you may run into problems and need to do some troubleshooting for shoe-related issues. Here are some hacks for your dance shoes.

Shoes too Tight?

  • Use a hair dryer to heat the inside of the shoes. Pop on some thick wool socks and put on those warm shoes. The heat and pressure will help the shoes stretch out and fit more comfortably.
  • Use rubbing alcohol on parts of the shoe that are uncomfortable. The alcohol will soften the shoe but not damage it.

Pain in the ball of your feet when wearing heels?

  • Buy some foam at your local craft store. Cut it into the shape of your foot and round it out to match the fit and sole of your shoe. Wear your shoes with the newly made foam insert. Not only will it provide a lot of cushion, it will be much more comfortable.
  • Tape together your third and fourth toes. This can lessen pressure on the nerve between the toes and prevent further pain. Make sure not to wrap them too tightly though, as it could cause further injury.

Do your dance shoes smell?

  • If you have more than one pair of shoes, try alternating them. This will give each shoe a chance to dry after being used.
  • Put your dance shoes in the freezer. The extreme cold will kill the odor and wick away the moisture that is causing your shoes to stink.
  • Use teabags. If you put a teabag into the front of your shoes right after you wear them it will help to absorb moisture and odor.

Are you in need of more tips for your dance shoes? Received an injury while dancing and not sure if it is severe? At James C. Ricketti, DPM, we are here to help you! Dr. Stephan J. Skokan and Dr. James C. Ricketti have an office that is conveniently located in Hamilton Square, New Jersey. Their combined experience and vast knowledge will help you get back to dancing in no time. Call 609-587-1674 or request an appointment today.

Just like adults, babies and children need to wear shoes. Shoes protect our feet from the weather, debris, and germs. Without shoes our feet can be riddled with disease, wounds, and other serious illness. Protecting our feet is critical because we use them to stay mobile every single day. Without our feet, we would not be able to walk, move, and play the way we are used to. From the time your child is born until the time they are adults, it is important to make sure you are outfitting them with the right shoe for their ever-evolving feet.

Cute shoes might look fun to buy, but think again. Usually, the cuter the shoe is, the least likely it is to be beneficial to a child’s foot. Cute shoes are typically rigid, sturdy, and lack a good grip. For normal day to day wear, try to find your child a shoe that is non-restrictive and allows freedom to use their normal range of motion. If a child wears a pair of shoes that do not fit properly, it can permanently deform their feet.

Shoes and socks should both be non-restrictive on all parts of the foot. Socks should not fit tightly around the ankle, or have seams that lift, or have flaps of extra fabric. Shoes should not be too tight, should have a soft flexible bottom and have good grip to prevent slipping. Crib shoes tend to be a great choice due to their well-made nature. Sneakers and closed toed shoes are also helpful for foot protection and breathability. Try to save all the cute shoes for quick photo shoots and special occasions.

When children are learning to walk, they do not always need to wear shoes. Shoes should be worn outside to prevent splinters and to prevent slipping but if a child prefers to have bare feet when learning to walk in the house, that is perfectly fine. Children tend to do better when learning to walk with bare feet as they feel out their surroundings and test their boundaries. If you want your child to wear socks, make sure that they have grip on the bottom so they do not slip and hurt themselves. Also, be sure to check the size of your child’s foot regularly. Small feet grow quickly and outgrow their shoes at a rapid rate.

Are you having a hard time deciding whether or not your child is wearing the right shoe? Do you need to talk to a professional to get the basics and discuss your child’s foot health? Look no further. Dr. James C. Ricketti and Dr. Stephen J. Sokan of James C. Ricketti, DPM, located in Hamilton Square, New Jersey, can help you and your child learn about the right shoe. Call 609-587-1674 and request an appointment today.


Trench Foot is not a disease that you see every day but it can be a big problem for the patient who has acquired it. Trench foot occurs when feet are exposed to damp and cold conditions for long periods of time. “Trench” refers to trench warfare from World War I. Many of the soldiers fought in trenches that filled up with water and soaked their feet for long periods of time. Due to exposure and lack of a podiatrist, many of these soldiers acquired trench foot and suffered.

3 Stages of Trench Foot

  1. First the blood vessels begin to constrict due to the cold conditions and the wetness inside of the shoe. The shoe has little oxygen and the feet do not get enough of it. The foot starts to feel cold to the touch. It swells and becomes discolored and numb. It feels like cold feet at first, maybe even the onset of frostbite but is completely different. If feet are warmed and remedied at this stage the foot will become red, puffy and tender.
  2. If the foot is not healed and warmed within stage one, it progresses to stage two. The tissues in the foot become damaged from lack of good circulation. The vessels open and tissues swell from the excess fluid in the shoes. If the foot is warmed at this stage, ulcers and blisters will appear. The ulcers will fall off and dead tissue will remain. Sometimes infection and gangrene occur at this stage.
  3. At the last stage of trench foot, the foot has been exposed to harsh temperatures and extreme moisture for long periods of time. Swelling will lessen and go away. The foot will begin to look normal. The foot will start to sweat more frequently and have a tingling sensation. It will be itchy, feel prickly and be extremely sensitive to cold.

Trench foot does not solely occur from standing in a trench. Fishermen with improper shoes can get the disease from standing in water for too long. People with extremely sweaty feet can also get this disorder due to moisture being trapped in their socks and shoes from the excessive sweat.

Have you stood in cold and damp situations for long periods of time? Does your foot tingle, have a sensitivity to cold, and ache? Call James C. Ricketti, DPM located in Hamilton Square, New Jersey at 609-587-1674. There Dr. James C. Ricketti and Dr. Stephen J. Skokan can examine your feet and make a diagnosis. Don’t want to fill out all that paperwork? Go to the patient portal and get a head start!

Your toe has been aching and has begun to bulge. Frantically you Google causes of your symptoms and give yourself a fright. According to the many websites out there, your foot could be broken or need to be amputated. The results are so far and wide that you decide you need to call a podiatrist like Dr. James C. Ricketti. After an examination in his office located in Hamilton Square, New Jersey, he determines that you do not need to amputate and that you merely have a stone bruise.

A stone bruise, also known as metatarsalgia, is a condition when one experiences pain in the metatarsals. This pain is centralized in the forefoot and often appears right behind the big toe. The second most common location of this condition is under the second metatarsal bone in the foot

A stone bruise is often the result of one of the heads of the bones becoming enlarged and irritating the surrounding tissues. Repetitive motion and use of the forefoot can activate the pain that the bulge causes. These conditions make it so the patient has a hard time walking and living a normal and mobile daily life.


Over the counter pain medication can be helpful when it comes to easing the pain and inflammation that a stone bruise can cause. Another alternative would be the use of pads in your shoes. These pads are specially designed for people with metatarsalgia and help to ease discomfort and pain. These pads can be placed in virtually any shoe. The user can choose whether they want to wear socks while using them.

Did that Google search scare you a little too much? Are your signs and symptoms similar to that of a stone bruise? At James C. Ricketti, DPM we are here to help. Call 609-587-1674 or request an appointment online today. Dr. Ricketti will examine, diagnose and treat your stone bruise and any other issues your feet and ankles might have. “Our experience and use of the latest diagnostic tools allows us to make the correct diagnosis of your problem and apply the appropriate treatment to get you back on your feet as fast as possible.”

The human foot is made up of 26 bones per foot. That is about a quarter of all the bones in our entire body! Within the foot there are joints, tendons, and muscles too. All feet are unique, and you will never find a set that is exactly the same as another. In essence, they are like snowflakes, no two feet are exactly the same as another person’s two feet. They all typically have a similar structure, but each set has its own footprint, gait, and formation. 

One common formation of the foot is the flat foot. This type of foot has a very low arch and is fairly common. You probably pass at least 10 people a day who have feet that are considered flatter than a pancake. Many podiatrists see flat feet that are also considered pronated. Pronated means that the feet rotate or roll in towards the arches.

Signs and symptoms of flat pronated feet are:

  1. The heel bone is turned away from the center of the body
  2. The inner ankle is bulging
  3. The leg is rotated inward
  4. The forefoot is shifted outward from the heel

What problems can flat feet cause?

  • Abnormal bone alignment
  • An imbalance of the muscles in the feet, ankle, leg, hips, and back
  • A combination of the two aforementioned problems

It is important to note that not all flat feet are pronated and not all pronated feet are flat. People with flat feet often feel discomfort in their back, their feet, and their legs. This discomfort can be remedied with orthotics, proper fitting shoes, or if the issue is severe at birth, surgery. Flat feet typically develop  during a child’s youth and do not typically cause too many issues. 

Is your lower back causing you pain and suffering? Are your feet tired after walking for short distances? You may have flat feet. At James C. Ricketti, DPM located in Hamilton Square, New Jersey, Dr. James C. Ricketti and Dr. Stephen J. Skokan can determine whether or not you have flat feet and if they are what is causing all that grief. Call 609-587-1674 or request an appointment online today. Your feet are our number one priority.

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