Foot Tendinitis: How the Podiatrist Helped

What You Need To Know About Hammer Toes

Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What You Need To Know About Hammer Toes

If you can pick things up with your toes, you may think you have a unique talent not shared by your friends. While this may be true, you may be surprised to learn that the reason you can do this may be because you have a foot deformity called hammer toes. Although hammer toes are not the only reason people can pick things up with their toes, this conditioner does make it easier to accomplish this because the toes are bent downward, enabling you to get a better grasp. If you suspect you have hammer toes, there are some things you should be aware. What are hammer toes? Hammer toes usually affect the largest toe next to your big toe, but can affect the other toes as well. The toe bends at the middle joint, causing the toe to look like a hammer. Instead of a straight, flat toe, a person with hammer toes has toes that are raised at the middle joint. This can range from mild to severe, depending on the circumstances. If you have had hammer toes since you were a child, you may have assumed this was simply the way your toes were supposed to look. What causes hammer toes? Hammer toes can be caused by wearing shoes that do not fit your feet properly. Shoes that are too narrow may have forced your toes together, and your toes may have bent to make more room. Likewise, wearing shoes with pointed or narrow toes may have caused your hammer toes. Hammer toes can also be caused by a muscle imbalance in your toes. What problems do hammer toes cause? Initially, you may not notice any problems from hammer toes, but they tend to get worse as you age. You may notice callouses on the top of the affected toes, where the top of your toe rubs on your shoes. You may develop corns in this area. You may also experience pain with walking, find it difficult to find shoes that fit your feet properly, or experience foot pain. What should you do if you suspect you have hammer toes? If you notice that your toes are bending at the middle joint, take that as a sign to change your footwear. Purchase shoes that provide plenty of room for your toes without squishing them together, and wear open-toed shoes or sandals when appropriate. Take your shoe off and wear slippers or socks inside the home, or slip off your shoes while at your desk at work. Exercise your toes by placing a towel on the floor and scrunching it with you toes, or simply wiggle your toes while watching TV or sitting at your desk. If this doesn’t help the situation or if you experience pain or discomfort from your hammer toes, seek the advice of a foot doctor at an office like the Elmhurst Podiatry Center Ltd. How do you treat hammer toes? In the early stages, the joints and muscles in the toe are still flexible and can be corrected via a splint or taping the toe, or by doing exercises to strengthen the muscles.  But as you age, your hammer toes may become inflexible and frozen in one position. They may no longer respond to exercises or simple corrective measures. At this point,...

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5 Tips For Dealing With Ingrown Toenails During Pregnancy

Posted by on Jul 12, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Tips For Dealing With Ingrown Toenails During Pregnancy

Even if you have never had a problem with ingrown toenails before, if you are pregnant, it is likely that you will experience one during your pregnancy. This is for several reasons. First, your nails tend to grow more rapidly during pregnancy, so they require more frequent care. Secondly, your feet and ankles may swell, increasing the likelihood that the edges of your nails will dig into the flesh around your toenails. However, there are several things you can do to prevent ingrown toenails or care for them while you are pregnant.  Wear Open-Toed Shoes or Go Barefoot When Possible One common cause of ingrown toenails is repeated trauma to the toenail from being inside a shoe throughout the day. For anyone with a history of ingrown toenails, it is a good idea to wear open-toed shoes during the summer and consider going barefoot at home. However, as a pregnant woman, you should be more aware of your raised risk for ingrown toenails and limit closed-toed shoes as much as possible. If you wear closed-toed shoes, you should avoid types that put extra pressure on your toes, such as high heels.  Purchase Well-fitting Shoes Throughout Your Pregnancy  Throughout your pregnancy, the size and shape of your feet may change. Besides swelling, you may notice that your feet become flatter and wider, due to increased amounts of hormones in your body as well as your increased weight. You may even notice that your shoe size increases. Any time you feel that your shoes are tight, you should consider getting professionally fitted for a new pair of shoes. You should avoid squeezing your feet into shoes that do not fit or that feel uncomfortable.  Take Measures to Reduce Swelling  Most pregnant women experience mild to moderate edema in their ankles and feet. Edema can lead to ingrown toenails even if you are not wearing shoes, because the flesh around your toenails can swell up around the edges of your toenails. However, this swelling can be reduced by taking a few precautionary measures. For example, you should elevate your feet while you are resting, take frequent breaks from standing or sitting, get plenty of exercise, and limit your salt intake.  Groom Your Toenails Appropriately  Toenails should not be cut too short and should be cut across in a straight line, as opposed to a curve. They should not be allowed to grow too long, as this puts them at risk for curling back into your toe. Because your nails will likely grow faster during pregnancy, you may find that you have to clip or file your toenails multiple times a week in order to keep them the perfect length.  As your pregnancy progresses, if it is difficult for you to groom your toes, you may ask your partner or a friend to clip your nails for you. Alternatively, you may go to a nail salon. However, you should make sure that they sanitize all of their equipment properly between customers or bring your own nail-care kit.  Visit a Podiatrist If You Have Problems If you have ingrown toenails while pregnant, you may want to visit a podiatrist at an office like Foot First Podiatry Centers to seek relief. Immediate treatment can prevent the problem from progressing and improve your pregnancy experience. Most treatments...

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Recovering From Your Trimalleolar Fracture Repair: Tips For Success

Posted by on Jul 6, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Recovering From Your Trimalleolar Fracture Repair: Tips For Success

Breaking an ankle is never fun, especially if you find yourself on the receiving end of multiple breaks at once. If you’ve recently had a trimalleolar fracture repair surgery on your ankle, then you’ve already been advised that the healing process can take months. While your surgeon will most likely prescribe medication to keep you comfortable once you’ve been released from the hospital, knowing what to do to reduce pain and encourage healing can help you to stay positive, too. The helpful tips below can reduce pain, encourage healing, and ensure that you manage stress during the healing process, from start to finish. Patience is the Key Above all else, following your doctor’s orders to rest in the first few weeks after your surgery is crucial. Using your ankle too soon, even by accident, can compromise the fragile state of both bone and tendon after screws and blades are inserted. For this reason, it’s best to have help at home on a daily basis. In many situations, doctors recommend staying completely off your leg for at least the first 30 days. Depending on how well you heal, you may be able to use crutches or a walking cast at this point. It’s far easier to prevent problems from occurring than to fix them once they do, so always err on the side of caution. Protect Your New Implants from Cold and Heat Even if you’re still in a cast, temperature extremes should be avoided whenever possible. This is largely because very cold or very warm weather can actually cause pain at the site of your metal implant. When it comes to explaining why this happens, a variety of theories exist. Some doctors believe this occurs because temperature has the ability to alter circulation. Others believe it’s because metal contracts and expands in cold and heat respectively. To prevent additional pain due to environmental temperature shifts, consider your cast and ankle to be especially sensitive at all times. Stay out of direct sun if it’s summer, and keep your home at a steady, even, and comfortable temperature. If you need to venture outside in the winter, try wrapping your leg in a small towel. Disposable heat wraps for the lower back can also be wrapped around a leg or even around a cast, helping to block out the cold. Make Use of Non-Drug Alternatives for Managing Pain at Home While the majority of patients do require medication to manage pain–at least in the first few weeks–there are plenty of non-drug alternatives you can try, too. Ultrasound therapy, a process where ultrasonic waves are reflected into the break, has been shown to speed healing and reduce pain. While you should always follow the advice of your orthopedic surgeon or ankle doctor, a small, portable ultrasound is easy to purchase and use right at home. Using a rice bag or other gentle heat source can help to encourage blood flow, which can sometimes help the body to speed healing. Because increased circulation can lead to increased bleeding, heat should only be used in the later stages of your healing process. Psychotherapy techniques that focus on mindfulness and relaxation are helpful when you’re feeling anxious or upset by pain. According to this article, using well-known DBT exercises can help you to accept and better...

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