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December 2019

Monday, 30 December 2019 00:00

Can An Ingrown Toenail Cause Pain?

An ingrown toenail is a condition that can cause severe pain and discomfort. It occurs as a result of the outer edge of the nail growing into the skin, and can become a serious ailment if it becomes infected. It typically affects the big toe, and it may be difficult to wear the shoes that are normally worn. There are a variety of reasons why ingrown toenails may develop. These can consist of feet that sweat excessively, wearing shoes that do not fit correctly, and trimming toenails improperly. Patients may notice the side of the nail may look red, and can be tender and swollen. It can be beneficial to soak the affected toe in warm water. This process may make it easier to lift the nail away from the skin by inserting a small piece of cotton over the injured area. If your ingrown toenail becomes severe, it is suggested that you counsel with a podiatrist who can offer you prompt and effective treatment.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Eric Simmons of InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Ingrown Toenails
Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

Why Are My Feet Swollen?

Many women are aware of the numerous aches and pains the body may experience throughout pregnancy. A common area for pain to occur is in the feet. This may be caused by the additional weight that builds during pregnancy, which may affect the arch, causing it to either disappear in the feet, or become extremely low. The feet may roll inward as a result of flat feet, and this may cause significant pain. Relief may be found when appropriate shoes are worn, and it may help to wear custom orthotics. Another common ailment that many pregnant women experience is swollen feet. This happens as a result of increased fluids and blood volume. To lessen the swelling, it may help to avoid foods that have elevated levels of salt, elevate the legs as often as possible, and wear shoes that fit correctly. If you have any questions about how pregnancy can affect the feet, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.

Pregnant women with swollen feet can be treated with a variety of different methods that are readily available. For more information about other cures for swollen feet during pregnancy, consult with Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.

What Foot Problems Can Arise During Pregnancy?

One problem that can occur is overpronation, which occurs when the arch of the foot flattens and tends to roll inward.  This can cause pain and discomfort in your heels while you’re walking or even just standing up, trying to support your baby.  

Another problem is edema, or swelling in the extremities. This often affects the feet during pregnancy but tends to occur in the later stages. 

How Can I Keep My Feet Healthy During Pregnancy?

  • Wearing orthotics can provide extra support for the feet and help distribute weight evenly
  • Minimize the amount of time spent walking barefoot
  • Wear shoes with good arch support
  • Wear shoes that allow for good circulation to the feet
  • Elevate feet if you experience swelling
  • Massage your feet
  • Get regular, light exercise, such as walking, to promote blood circulation to the feet

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Care for Pregnant Women
Friday, 20 December 2019 00:00

Do Your Child's Feet Hurt?

Have your child's feet been examined lately? Healthy feet are happy feet. If your child is complaining of foot pain, it may be a sign of underlying problems.

Monday, 16 December 2019 00:00

Possible Causes of Blisters

The most common cause of blisters on the feet is friction. This can happen as a result of wearing shoes and socks that do not fit correctly. Additionally, there may be other circumstances that can cause blisters. These can consist of an allergic reaction to an insect bite, severe sunburn, or medical conditions such as dermatitis. A blister will generally form as the body’s natural reaction to protect skin that has been damaged. It appears as a bubble that is filled with fluid, and will gradually drain when the new skin forms. It may help to wear an elastic bandage over the blister, which can help to protect the area as daily activities are accomplished. If you have a blister on your foot that has become infected, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer treatment solutions.

Blisters are prone to making everyday activities extremely uncomfortable. If your feet are hurting, contact Dr. Eric Simmons of InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Foot Blisters

Foot blisters develop as a result of constantly wearing tight or ill-fitting footwear. This happens due to the constant rubbing from the shoe, which can often lead to pain.

What Are Foot Blisters?

A foot blister is a small fluid-filled pocket that forms on the upper-most layer of the skin. Blisters are filled with clear fluid and can lead to blood drainage or pus if the area becomes infected.

How Do Blisters Form?

Blisters on the feet are often the result of constant friction of skin and material, usually by shoe rubbing. Walking in sandals, boots, or shoes that don’t fit properly for long periods of time can result in a blister. Having consistent foot moisture and humidity can easily lead to blister formation.

Prevention & Treatment

It is important to properly care for the affected area in order to prevent infection and ease the pain. Do not lance the blister and use a Band-Aid to provide pain relief. Also, be sure to keep your feet dry and wear proper fitting shoes. If you see blood or pus in a blister, seek assistance from a podiatrist.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Blisters
Monday, 09 December 2019 00:00

Can Orthotics Help Bunions?

A bunion is the name that is given for the large bony protrusion that develops on the side and bottom of the big toe. It can develop for a variety of reasons, some of which can include genetic factors, foot injuries, and ill-fitting footwear. The bump that forms may appear red from friction that is caused by shoes, and calluses and corns may also develop on the affected area. Patients who have severe bunions may experience pain and discomfort, and have difficulty walking. People who realize they have a bunion may find mild relief in wearing shoes that have ample room for the toes to move freely in. If you are afflicted with a bunion, it is strongly advised that you speak with a podiatrist who can prescribe orthotics which may help you to find comfort.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact Dr. Eric Simmons of InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why Do Bunions Form?

Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How Are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What Are Bunions?
Sunday, 01 December 2019 00:00

Your Toddler and Flat Feet

Research has indicated that the majority of babies are born with flat feet. This is a result of an undeveloped arch in the foot, and is noticeable when the entire foot lies flat on the floor. In many children, the arch is not fully formed until the teenage years. There are a number of reasons that can affect if the arch has or has not developed as the aging process occurs. These can include genetic factors as well as obesity. Some of the symptoms that are associated with flat feet can consist of severe pain, achiness, and swollen ankles. If your child is experiencing pain while walking, it is suggested that you have a podiatrist examine their feet. Additionally, podiatrists can guide you toward choosing the correct insoles, and can recommend proper stretching techniques.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flat Feet
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