Posts for category: Foot Issues
Diabetes is an autoimmune disease that impacts blood glucose (or blood sugar) levels. If left uncontrolled, diabetes can cause a variety of complications, including issues related to the feet. The medical team at Complete Foot & Ankle Specialists – Dr. Eric Anderson, Dr. Richard Jennings, and Dr. Melitta Simmons offer complete diabetic foot care to those in and around the Bellefontaine, Springfield, London, OH, vicinity.
Ultimately, diabetes is a medical condition that reduces the effectiveness of blood circulation. The impact on the body’s blood flow can lead to issues that require foot care and treatment. Diabetes can also cause nerve damage (neuropathy); if left unchecked, a person with diabetes can lose the ability to feel cold, pain, or hot sensation. As a result, even a small injury (like a foot blister from new shoes) may be difficult to detect. And if left unnoticed (and therefore untreated), this can become a serious infection or worse.
As experienced podiatrists, Dr. Anderson, Dr. Jennings, and Dr. Simmons provide preventive and acute diabetic foot care to those living or working in the Bellefontaine, Springfield, London, OH area.
Recognizing the Symptoms of Diabetic Foot Issues
People with diabetes must be aware of possible foot problem warning signs to keep their feet healthy and infection-free. While foot issues can happen to anyone, those with diabetes risk more serious medical complications because, as noted above, they tend to have poor circulation. As such, it is essential NOT to ignore the following foot symptoms -
- The swelling of one’s legs, ankles, or feet.
- A change to the color of the skin in the area.
- Burning/tingling sensations.
- Lack of sensation in the foot.
- Foot sores that do not heal.
- Numbing of one or more toes.
- Ingrown toenails.
- Cracks that form between the toes.
- Blisters, calluses, corns.
- Hammertoes or bunions.
- Planters Warts.
- Athlete’s foot.
Daily preventative action is important to keep feet healthy, and this simple routine has the potential to make a positive and significant impact on the management of diabetes. Even the slightest delay in seeking medical help for this condition can put a person with diabetes at unnecessary risk for additional medical complications.
If you or someone you love/know recognize any of the above-noted symptoms, contact Complete Foot & Ankle Specialists for complete diabetic foot care in Bellefontaine, and Springfield, OH, also serving London, OH. Complete Foot & Ankle Specialists can be reached at (937) 599-3668 or (937) 322-3346.
Your Sweaty Feet Could be Hyperhidrosis
Hyperhidrosis is the medical term for excessive sweating. Plantar hyperhidrosis is when people experience excessive sweating of the feet. Men are often more likely than women to develop this issue. The good news is that if your podiatrist determines that you have plantar hyperhidrosis there are ways to several ways to treat it.
Your Hyperhidrosis May Be Secondary
Okay, so what does this mean exactly? This means that you may have an underlying condition that could have brought about hyperhidrosis. So by finding and treating the underlying cause we can often alleviate hyperhidrosis. Secondary hyperhidrosis may be caused by:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Intense stress
- Certain prescription medications such as antidepressants
- Tuberculosis and other infections
As is the way for treating most health conditions, your podiatrist will often recommend certain lifestyle changes and simple treatment options first to see if these are effective enough against excessive sweatiness. Only if these treatment options don’t work will your podiatrist turn to more aggressive options. Conservative options include:
- Applying deodorant or antiperspirant to your feet
- Applying antifungal powder to the feet
- Making sure not to wear the same shoes two days in a row
- Choosing breathable shoes (shoes made from leather or canvas)
- Wearing moisture-wicking socks
While a podiatrist can recommend a variety of options to help you manage your sweaty feet, there are instances where you may need to turn to a foot and ankle specialist for more aggressive treatment. One way that a podiatrist treats sweaty feet is with iontophoresis, a painless device that passes mild electrical currents through the feet to temporarily stop sweat glands from producing sweat. Along with iontophoresis, a podiatrist may also recommend Botox injections, which can also temporarily stop excessive sweating for anywhere from 6-9 months.
If you are dealing with sweaty feet and it’s impacting your daily routine or making you uncomfortable, a podiatrist can evaluate your issue and figure out how to get your sweating under control.
Do I really have poor circulation in my feet?
It isn’t always easy to notice the warning signs of bad circulation. After all, it’s normal to feel a lack of sensation in your feet during cold winter days or to notice some aching and tiredness when standing for long periods of time; however, signs of poor circulation in the feet include:
- A “pins and needles” sensation in your feet
- Changes in the color of your feet
- Cold feet
- Numbness or tingling
What causes poor circulation in the feet?
There are many reasons that people may develop poor circulation in their feet as they get older. Some causes can’t be helped but others are due to health conditions or bad habits. Causes of poor circulation include:
- Age: As we get older most people will deal with some degree of decreased blood flow.
- Inactive lifestyle: If you lead a sedentary lifestyle you are more likely to deal with blood flow issues, especially as you get older. We see this most often in seniors who have mobility issues and can’t stay active.
- Overweight or obese: Being overweight or obese also puts a lot of stress on the body, causing the heart to work harder to pump out blood to the rest of the body including the feet.
- Smoking: Smoking restricts blood flow, which makes it more difficult for blood to reach the feet. Smoking can also increase your risk for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and peripheral artery disease (PAD).
- Diabetes: Diabetes can increase your risk for inflammation, poor circulation, and even nerve damage in the feet (known as neuropathy). You must work with your doctor and a podiatrist to control your blood sugar to reduce your risk.
You are dealing with persistent heel pain
Heel pain is a common complaint and most often the result of an overuse injury such as plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis. The good news is that heel pain will usually go away on its own with rest and home care; however, if the heel pain is severe or persists for weeks without getting better than it’s time to see a podiatrist and find out what’s going on.
You’re dealing with a sprained or fractured foot
If you are dealing with a new foot and ankle injury that you’ve never experienced before, then it’s a good idea to see a podiatrist who will be able to examine it to determine the extent and severity of the sprain or break. Since untreated or improperly treated injuries can lead to long-term foot and ankle pain and instability, it’s a good idea to get proper podiatry care when you sustain an injury.
You have been diagnosed with diabetes
People with diabetes know that they are also at an increased risk for other foot-related complications including neuropathy, ulcers, and infections. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes it’s a good idea to have a podiatrist that you can turn to for regular care, especially when problems arise. Even if you aren’t experiencing symptoms, you should still see your podiatrist once a year for a routine checkup.
You’re dealing with regular joint pain and stiffness
While there are many reasons why someone may deal with a bout of joint pain, if this is a persistent problem, you may be dealing with arthritis. Since arthritis is progressive, it’s important to diagnose this problem early when medications and treatments can help to slow the progression of joint damage.
If you are experiencing a foot or ankle injury or experiencing symptoms that have you concerned, it’s best to consult foot care professionals for comprehensive podiatry care.
Here are some possible reasons why you may be dealing with foot and ankle swelling,
It’s normal for there to be a little bit of swelling in the ankles and feet due to extra fluid and pressure placed on the body from the developing uterus. This is more common for women in their third trimester, especially the weeks leading up to delivery, or during hotter months. However, it’s important to keep an eye on your swelling to make sure it’s not severe or appearing suddenly. If you notice significant swelling of the feet and ankles along with stomach pain, nausea, vomiting or headaches, call your doctor right away, as this could be a sign of high blood pressure (known as preeclampsia).
You have a foot or ankle injury
This is a common reason why people often turn to a podiatrist. Everything from strains to sprained ankles and fractured bones in the foot can lead to sudden swelling after an injury. It’s a good idea to ice the injury to help reduce swelling. If your swelling is accompanied by severe pain or trouble walking on the foot then you should see a podiatrist immediately.
You could have a blood clot
A blood clot in the leg, often known as deep vein thrombosis, can stop blood from flowing through the legs back to the heart. As a result of the blockage, this can lead to swelling in the ankles and the affected leg. Since a blood clot can be particularly dangerous it is important that you seek immediate medical attention if your swelling is accompanied by leg pain, fever, and any color changes in your leg.
You may have heart or kidney disease
It is possible that swelling in your feet or ankles could be warning us of problems with your kidneys, liver, or heart. If you find that your ankles start to swell at night, your body could be retaining both salt and water (a possible sign of heart failure). When kidneys don’t function properly excess fluid can accumulate within the body and lead to swelling. If you notice swelling along with weight gain, loss of appetite, and fatigue then you should talk with your doctor.
These are only some of the reasons why you may be dealing with foot and ankle swelling. Other causes could be,
- Consuming too much salt
- Sitting or standing for too long
- Side effects from certain medications
- An infection (more common in those with diabetic neuropathy)
- Weak or damaged veins in the legs