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March 2020

Patients who work while standing on hard surfaces for most of the day may be familiar with general foot pain. It is beneficial to wear shoes that fit correctly, as this may be helpful in reducing existing foot discomfort. Additionally, some patients will choose to wear insoles in their shoes which can help to add extra comfort and support. Compression socks may be helpful in circulating blood flow through the feet, and this can make it easier to stand during the day. There are also specific foot stretches that can be performed while standing that can help the feet to feel better. These stretches can consist of rolling the arch of your foot on a tennis ball, and pointing and flexing your foot as often as possible. If you would like more information about finding comfort while standing during the day, please consult with your local podiatrist.

While working on the feet, it is important to take the proper care of them. For more information about working on your feet, contact Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Working on Your Feet

Standing on your feet for long periods of time can cause stress and pain in your feet. Your whole body may experience change in terms of posture, back pain, bunions, callouses and or plantar warts. There are ways to avoid these conditions with proper foot care, smart choices and correct posture.

Positive Changes

Negative heeled shoe – Choosing this shoe type places the heel slightly lower than the ball of the foot. These are great for overall foot health. Find shoes that fit you correctly.

Go barefoot – Our feet were not designed to be enclosed for all hours of the day. Try to periodically expose your feet to air.

Eliminate Pain

Foot Exercises – Performing simple exercises, incorporating yoga and doing stretches are beneficial. This will allow increased blood flow to the area and muscles of the foot.

Achilles tendon – Stretching the foot out flat on the floor will relax the calf muscles and tendon. These exercises can be performed almost anywhere. Make sure you add these exercises to your daily regimen. 

With a little bit of this information and knowing more about foot health, you will notice changes. Foot stretches and proper footwear will help with pain and prevent further issues.

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 Working on Your Feet
Monday, 23 March 2020 00:00

Common Symptoms of Toenail Fungus

Common symptoms of toenail fungus include yellowed and thickened nails. In severe cases, the nail may crack and lift off of the nail bed, which can appear unsightly. It is caused by a fungus that lives and thrives in warm and moist environments, and is often found in public swimming pools, locker rooms, and surrounding areas. There may be existing medical conditions that can also contribute to the onset of toenail fungus. These can include diabetes, a weakened immune system, or from a previous toe injury. There are steps that can be taken which may help to prevent toenail fungus from developing. These can consist of trimming the toenails correctly and keeping them clean, in addition to washing and drying the feet thoroughly. If you have been afflicted with toenail fungus, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer the best treatment techniques for you.

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, 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.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

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 How to Treat Your Toenail Fungus
Thursday, 19 March 2020 00:00

Heel Pain Can Be Treated!

Do you suffer from heel pain when you get up in the morning? If so, you should seek the professional help of your podiatrist and have a proper diagnosis performed. Heel pain can be caused by several different foot-related conditions.

Monday, 16 March 2020 00:00

Possible Causes of Cracked Heels

The condition that is known as cracked heels can cause severe pain and discomfort. It can develop as a result of having excessively dry skin, or from standing for extended periods of time throughout the day. Additionally, many patients can develop this ailment from wearing open back shoes. There can also be medical reasons as to why cracked heels may form, including athlete’s foot, psoriasis, or eczema. Moderate relief may be found when the feet are soaked in warm water, followed by frequently applying a good moisturizer. This may help the skin of the feet to become supple and soft. If you have developed cracked heels, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist who can recommend correct treatment techniques.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

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.

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Monday, 09 March 2020 00:00

Children and Walking

Children’s feet may become stronger when shoes are not worn while indoors. When children are barefoot, they start performing a grasping action with their toes, which can be beneficial in strengthening the entire foot. When walking is done outdoors, it is important to purchase shoes that fit correctly. It is important to measure your child’s feet approximately every three months to avoid purchasing footwear that may constrain their toes. Focusing on buying shoes that are lightweight and made of a breathable material may also be beneficial to the overall health of your child’s feet. Adequate room is necessary in the top of the shoe for the toes to move freely in. Additionally, proper foot care can consist of washing the feet daily, followed by drying them completely between the toes. When the toes are trimmed in a straight line, uncomfortable foot conditions that can include ingrown toenails may be prevented. If you would like additional information about how to care for your child’s feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, 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.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

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 How to Care for Your Child's Feet
Monday, 02 March 2020 00:00

Who Does Sever’s Disease Affect?

The medical condition that is known as Sever’s disease can generally affect adolescents who participate in running and jumping activities. This ailment impacts the growth plate, and may occur as a result of the heel bone and surrounding muscles growing at different rates. There may be existing medical conditions that precede the onset of Sever’s disease. These can include flat feet, high arches, obesity, or having one leg that is shorter than the other. Some of the symptoms that are associated with this condition can consist of red skin around the affected area, swelling, and difficulty walking. Mild relief may be found when supportive shoes are worn, and gentle exercises are performed that may strengthen the foot. If you think your child may have Sever’s disease, it is strongly advised that you consult with a podiatrist for professional care and treatment.

Sever's disease often occurs in children and teens. If your child is experiencing foot or ankle pain, see Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can treat your child’s foot and ankle needs.

Sever’s Disease

Sever’s disease is also known as calcaneal apophysitis, which is a medical condition that causes heel pain I none or both feet. The disease is known to affect children between the ages of 8 and 14.

Sever’s disease occurs when part of the child’s heel known as the growth plate (calcaneal epiphysis) is attached to the Achilles tendon. This area can suffer injury when the muscles and tendons of the growing foot do not keep pace with bone growth. Therefore, the constant pain which one experiences at the back of the heel will make the child unable to put any weight on the heel. The child is then forced to walk on their toes.

Symptoms

Acute pain – Pain associated with Sever’s disease is usually felt in the heel when the child engages in physical activity such as walking, jumping and or running.

Highly active – Children who are very active are among the most susceptible in experiencing Sever’s disease, because of the stress and tension placed on their 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 injuries.

Read more about Sever's Disease
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