Posts for category: Foot Condition
Conservative Treatment Options
If a bunion is caught during the early stages, then you’re in luck. Most people can get away with at-home care and more conservative ways to manage their bunions. Most podiatrists will recommend conservative measures first to see if they ease bunion stiffness, pain and swelling. It’s when symptoms aren’t managed through these lifestyle changes that a podiatrist steps in to provide relief. Some conservative ways to treat bunions include,
- Icing the bunion for 15-20 minutes at a time to ease pain and swelling. This can be done 3-4 times a day, every day, as needed.
- Taking an anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen that can reduce inflammation and pain (while medication only provides temporary relief, when you are in pain, this medication can certainly help)
- Stretching out the foot with special mobility exercises for the feet and ankles (ask your podiatrist or simply search online for some of the best foot stretches to ease bunion stiffness)
- Wearing proper footwear that provides the ideal cushioning, fit, and support
- Avoiding high heels, shoes that put pressure on the bunion, and shoes with a pointed toe
- Getting custom orthotics from a podiatrist (these custom-made shoe inserts can provide additional support for the deformed joint)
So, you’ve been trying to manage your bunion symptoms on your own but nothing seems to be working. Does this sound like you? If so, it’s time to employ the help of your trusty podiatrist. After all, that’s what they are there for. A podiatrist can provide you with the treatment plan you need when home care fails to provide you with the results you’re looking for. Your podiatrist may recommend splinting, padding or tapping, or may prescribe a stronger pain reliever. They can also suggest specialty footwear that can provide ample support. They can also determine if it’s time to get corrective bunion surgery.
If you adopt these simple solutions you may find that it drastically slows the growth of your bunions and may even keep you from needing surgery in the future. Of course, if your bunion is causing you severe pain, it’s always best to speak with a foot and ankle specialist to find out what you can do to better manage your symptoms.
What is Raynaud’s disease?
This rare disorder temporarily narrows or restricts blood flow to the blood vessels of the extremities. Raynaud’s disease is characterized by an attack and is often the result of cold weather exposure. There are two types of Raynaud’s disease: primary and secondary. Primary Raynaud’s disease occurs on its own without a cause while secondary Raynaud’s disease is the result of an underlying health problem.
What causes it?
Sometimes Raynaud’s disease has no known cause (as is the case with primary Raynaud’s disease); however, certain autoimmune diseases, extreme stress, or cold weather exposure are typically the main causes. Risk factors that can increase the likelihood of primary Raynaud’s disease include:
- Being a woman
- Being under 30 years old (symptoms offer appear during the teen years)
- A family history of Raynaud’s disease
- Thyroid disorders, autoimmune diseases, and other chronic diseases
- Certain medications
- Exposure to certain chemicals, cold weather, or vibrating machines
What are the signs and symptoms?
When an attack occurs, skin on the toes and hands often turns white or pale. You may notice a loss of feeling in the extremities, as well. The area may also turn blue. Then once circulation returns, the area will warm and the skin will turn red. You may also notice burning, tingling, or throbbing as the sensation returns. Raynaud’s attack can last anywhere from several minutes to several hours.
How is Raynaud’s disease treated?
If a certain medication or underlying health problem is causing these attacks, your doctor may recommend switching medications or can help you better manage these chronic health problems to reduce your risks for an attack. If your primary Raynaud’s attacks are the result of cold exposure, avoiding cold temperatures is the best way to prevent attacks. Ensure that you are also properly bundled and wearing warm socks and gloves if you have to go outdoors on cold days.
Numbness and color changes in the feet can also be signs of diabetes and nerve damage, so it’s important that you see your podiatrist right away to rule out more serious health concerns.
Wear the Proper Shoes
Whether you’re hiking, running, or simply walking to work, it’s important that you are wearing the appropriate shoes for the job. Shoes that don’t provide your feet with enough cushion and support, especially when pounding the pavement, can leave you dealing with blisters, calluses, and other foot injuries. Make sure that you are also getting shoes that provide the ideal fit. Shoes that are too tight or loose can rub against the skin and result in blisters.
There are blister pads on the market for a reason! Even if you are wearing properly fitted footwear, you may still find that you need a little added protection for your feet. A blister pad can be used to protect a blister that you have or it can be used in places that are prone to blisters.
Wear the Right Socks
The socks that you wear are just as important for maintaining healthy feet as the shoes that you wear. Choose socks that wick away moisture and consider doubling up on socks if you are getting ready to participate in an activity that increases your chances of developing a blister. The added layer can provide more protection for your feet. If your socks become wet or moist, it’s important that you change your socks right away.
Use a Lubricant Before Exercise
Shoes and socks that rub against the feet can lead to blisters, so it’s important to reduce this type of friction by keeping feet lubricated. This is particularly important for runners or hikers. Apply petroleum jelly to the feet so that they are more likely to slide rather than rub against shoes and socks.
A podiatrist can recommend the appropriate footwear for you, provide custom orthotics and ensure that you provide your feet with the support and cushioning they need for all of your activities to prevent blisters from happening to you. If blisters are a common problem, talk with your podiatrist about how you can prevent this from happening.
What are some complications of fallen arches?
Some people have fallen arches but never experience any issues; however, sometimes fallen arches can lead to,
- Foot, heel, and arch pain, particularly when standing or walking
- Muscle pain
- Leg cramps
- Shooting leg pains that start at the soles of the feet
- Swelling of the feet or tenderness in the soles
- Plantar fasciitis
- Shin splints
- Bone spurs
- Lower back pain, hip pain, or knee pain
What causes fallen arches?
Arches develop around the age of 2 or 3 years old; however, sometimes arches never develop. Genetics can increase your risk for flat feet. Sometimes injuries or other foot problems can cause flat feet to develop as an adult. Certain conditions can also increase your risk for flat feet including,
- Cerebral palsy
- Achilles tendonitis
- High blood pressure
- Rheumatoid arthritis
If fallen arches do not cause any problems then you don’t really need to do anything about them; however, it is important to recognize whether certain issues you’re dealing with could be the result of fallen arches. If so, your podiatrist may recommend a wide range of nonsurgical treatment options including,
- Nonsteroid anti-inflammatory medications
- Physical therapy
- Orthotics and arch support
- Stretching exercises
- Custom shoes
Foot and ankle pain can affect mobility and make it difficult to do the things you normally do. If you are dealing with foot or ankle pain, we can help. In Bellefontaine, Springfield, and London, OH, foot and ankle pain treatments are available at Complete Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our highly skilled podiatrists, Dr. Eric Anderson, Dr. Richard Jennings, and Dr. Melitta Simmons, can diagnose and treat the cause of your foot or ankle pain.
Causes of Foot Pain
Foot pain can have many different causes, from an acute injury to a chronic condition that developed gradually over time due to repeated stress on the feet. Some foot conditions that often cause pain include:
Bunions: A bony protrusion on the side of the foot is often caused by a dislocated big toe joint. Pain and inflammation can develop when bunions rub against the interior of the shoes.
Plantar Fasciitis: A condition in which the plantar fascia tissue along the bottom of the foot becomes inflamed. Pain is usually felt at the bottom of the heel, as well as along the arch of the foot.
Achilles Tendinitis: A condition in which the Achilles tendon that connects the calf muscle to the heel bone becomes strained or inflamed. Pain is usually felt at the back of the heel.
Heel Spurs: Bony growths on the bottom of the heel are caused by calcium deposits.
Fractures: A fractured or broken bone in the foot can cause pain.
Morton’s Neuroma: A condition in which there is a thickening of the tissue surrounding the nerve that leads to the toes. Pain can be felt in the ball of the foot.
Causes of Ankle Pain
In addition to foot pain and discomfort, certain types of injuries and conditions can lead to pain in the ankle. One common cause of ankle pain is a sprain, which occurs when the foot and ankle move in different directions. The incompatible movements can over-stretch or tear the ligaments in the ankle and cause pain. Other causes of ankle pain include arthritis, fractured bone, and bursitis.
It is important to seek treatment for foot and ankle pain. Failing to treat certain types of injuries or conditions could result in improper healing and long-term problems, such as chronic pain or instability.
We treat all types of foot and ankle pain at our Bellefontaine, Springfield, and London, OH, area offices. Our experienced podiatrists can recommend an appropriate treatment approach based on your specific injury or condition. Examples of some of the methods used for treating different foot and ankle conditions include:
- Custom orthotics
- Protective padding
- Strength or mobility exercises
- Compression bandages
- Night splints
If foot or ankle pain is affecting you, we can help. For the treatment of foot and ankle pain in Bellefontaine, Springfield, or London, OH, schedule a consultation with Dr. Anderson, Dr. Jennings, or Dr. Simmons by calling Complete Foot & Ankle Specialists at (937) 599-3668 for Bellefontaine or at (937) 322-3346 for Springfield.