Items filtered by date: May 2021

Monday, 24 May 2021 00:00

Why Are My Heels Cracked?

Dry, cracked heels can be not only annoying and unsightly, but also painful. The biggest cause of cracked heels is skin dehydration. The skin on the bottom of the feet tends to lose moisture easily. This can occur from a variety of factors, such as exposure to dry indoor heating, cold weather and from wearing shoes that do not protect the back of the foot. Once the feet become dehydrated, the skin can become rough and thick, forming calluses to protect the heel. Over time, the calluses can crack, and can cause discomfort, pain, and even infection. If you notice that your heels are dry, cracked, itchy, tender, or discolored, it is suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot and Ankle Clinics, PA. Our doctors 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 offices located in Woodbury, West St. Paul, and Edina, MN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 17 May 2021 00:00

How Do Ingrown Toenails Develop?

The definition of an ingrown toenail is when the nail grows into the surrounding skin. It can cause severe discomfort, and it may be painful to wear shoes. It can be caused by genetic factors, wearing shoes that do not fit correctly, and improperly trimming the toenails. Additionally, a toe injury, such as stubbing the toe, may cause an ingrown toenail to develop. Patients have found mild relief when the affected nail is soaked in warm water, followed by gently pulling the skin away from the nail. If you have an ingrown toenail, it is strongly suggested that  you are under the care of a podiatrist who can offer you correct treatment techniques, which can possibly prevent an infection.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact one of our podiatrists of Foot and Ankle Clinics, PA. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Woodbury, West St. Paul, and Edina, MN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Friday, 14 May 2021 00:00

Do You Suffer From Painful Feet?

Painful deformities, such as hammertoes, can be treated. Stop living with foot pain, and have beautiful feet again!

Monday, 10 May 2021 00:00

Toe Arthritis Can Be Painful

A painful condition that can gradually develop is arthritis in the toes. It occurs as a result of inflamed toe joints, and often affects the big toe. It may happen from an injury, genetic factors, or from frequent gout attacks. One of the first symptoms of this foot condition is severe pain and discomfort. It may be difficult to move the toes, which can hinder completing daily activities. The toe may become stiff, which is due to a loss of cartilage that provides adequate cushioning for mobility. The toes provide a sense of balance, and arthritis in the toes may limit stability. If you have pain in your toes, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can offer you correct treatment techniques.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot and Ankle Clinics, PA. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Woodbury, West St. Paul, and Edina, MN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Care for Your Arthritic Foot

Foot wounds, or ulcers, occur when the outer layers of the skin are damaged, thus exposing the deeper tissues of the feet. Ulcers can form due to wearing shoes that don’t fit correctly or from an injury that breaks the skin. Ulcers are most common in patients who have diabetes, neuropathy or vascular disease, and these open wounds can become infected if left untreated. While the wounds may not be painful, common signs include redness, inflammation, an odor, or thickened tissue. Patients who are at a higher risk for foot wounds, or have wounds that don’t heal, should consult with a podiatrist. Usually, a podiatrist will remove the unhealthy skin to assist with healing. Then, depending on the situation, special shoe padding, antibiotics, or surgery may be recommended for treating the wound.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with one of our podiatrists from Foot and Ankle Clinics, PA. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Woodbury, West St. Paul, and Edina, MN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care

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