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December 2019

Monday, 30 December 2019 00:00

The Difficulties of Having a Hammertoe

Having a hammertoe can make simple activities such as walking or wearing shoes feel like agony. The discomfort and pain that comes with having a hammertoe is due to the curling affect it has on the joints of the affected toe or toes, pushing them downward. The development of other foot-related conditions, such as corns and calluses, are common among those who have hammertoes. Hammertoes tend to be more common as you age, as well as for those with arthritis. To help ease the pain and discomfort of having a hammertoe, it’s recommended you refrain from wearing tightly-fitting shoes. For further guidance and a professional treatment plan, we recommend you speak with a podiatrist.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists from Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. Our doctors will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Sioux Falls, SD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

Contagious Athlete’s Foot

The medical condition that is known as athlete’s foot is caused by a fungus. Common names for this ailment can include tinea pedis and ringworm of the foot. The symptoms that are typically associated with athlete’s foot can consist of itching on the bottom of the feet and between the toes, in addition to dry, flaky, and cracking skin. In severe cases, there may be small blisters that form which may ooze. This type of fungus generally lives and thrives in warm and moist environments. These can include public swimming pools, locker rooms, and shower room floors. Research has shown that there are methods that can be implemented which may prevent this contagious condition. These can consist of wearing appropriate shoes while in these areas, and avoiding sharing shoes and towels. If you believe you have developed athlete's foot, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can determine what the best treatment is for you.

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Sioux Falls Foot Specialists.  Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

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

Read more about Athlete's Foot
Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

Diabetes and Foot Ulcers

Wound care is generally a familiar concern for diabetic patients. When the insulin levels are elevated for an extended period of time, there may be a loss of feeling as a result of neuropathy. A small cut or scrape on the foot may have the potential of developing into a dangerous wound, and prompt treatment is necessary in possibly preventing a painful foot ulcer. Proper treatment may begin with cleaning the affected area thoroughly, followed by applying an antibiotic cream. It is important the wound is covered, and this may help to prevent bacteria from multiplying at the site of the foot ulcer. If you are affected by diabetes, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can help this condition.

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 Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. 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 office located in Sioux Falls, SD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care
Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

Effects of Having a Stress Fracture

Stress fractures refer to having small breaks in the bone, commonly found in the second and third metatarsals of the foot. Stress fractures may not be obvious at first, however they tend to worsen overtime if not treated, and can be very painful. They typically occur due to overuse in a sporting activity, and can be prevented by gradually intensifying your workout and properly warming up before practicing an intense, high energy activity. It’s also important you wear footwear that gives your feet needed support, especially if you are running or jogging on uneven, or rugged surfaces. In terms of treatment, it is suggested that you get plenty of rest, treat the area with ice, and keep the foot elevated to avoid further swelling. We recommend you consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and an advised treatment plan.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

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

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle
Monday, 16 December 2019 00:00

Who Does Sever’s Disease Affect?

The medical condition that is referred to as Sever’s disease generally targets teenagers. It can occur when the heel bone grows faster than the tendons, ligaments, and muscles in the leg, and this can possibly cause them to stretch beyond their normal range. This condition can affect teens who frequently participate in sporting events that involve running and jumping activities. Patients who experience this type of injury may have symptoms that can consist of swelling in the heel area, pain and discomfort when the foot is touched, and it may be difficult to walk. Treatment options can include elevating the affected the foot which may help to reduce swelling, performing specific stretches that can strengthen the foot, and in severe cases, the child may have a cast. If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, it is advised that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can offer proper treatment solutions.

Sever's disease often occurs in children and teens. If your child is experiencing foot or ankle pain, see one of our podiatrists from Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. Our doctors 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 Sioux Falls, SD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle injuries.

Read more about Sever's Disease
Wednesday, 11 December 2019 00:00

Reminder: When was the last time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

Monday, 09 December 2019 00:00

Possible Causes of Cracked Heels

Dry skin will generally precede the condition that is known as cracked heels. This ailment affects the outer edges of the heels and can cause severe pain and discomfort. Common reasons for cracked heels to develop can include standing for extended periods of time throughout the day, wearing shoes that have an open back, or medical conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. Research has indicated that it may be beneficial to sanitize a bowl and soak your feet in warm water. This, followed by using a good moisturizer, can be useful in locking in the moisture that soaking the feet provided. If you are severely affected by cracked heels, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer you treatment options and discuss preventative methods. 

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 Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. 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 office located in Sioux Falls, SD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Monday, 02 December 2019 00:00

Treatment Options for a Broken Foot

A common cause of a broken foot is a traumatic fall. Additionally, it can happen gradually from repeated stress that occurs in the same area of the foot. This can develop from frequently participating in sporting activities that involve running and jumping. The symptoms that many patients experience include severe pain and discomfort, an inability to walk, and the foot may become swollen or bruised. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which typically consists of having an X-ray taken, treatment can begin. The type of treatment may depend on the severity of the fracture. Effective methods can consist of wearing a boot or cast. If your foot is severely fractured, surgery may be necessary to repair the affected bones. If you have broken your foot, please consult with a podiatrist as quickly as possible to begin treatment.

A broken foot requires immediate medical attention and treatment. If you need your feet checked, contact one of our podiatrists from Sioux Falls Foot Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Broken Foot Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

A broken foot is caused by one of the bones in the foot typically breaking when bended, crushed, or stretched beyond its natural capabilities. Usually the location of the fracture indicates how the break occurred, whether it was through an object, fall, or any other type of injury. 

Common Symptoms of Broken Feet:

  • Bruising
  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Blue in color
  • Numbness
  • Cold
  • Misshapen
  • Cuts
  • Deformities

Those that suspect they have a broken foot shoot seek urgent medical attention where a medical professional could diagnose the severity.

Treatment for broken bones varies depending on the cause, severity and location. Some will require the use of splints, casts or crutches while others could even involve surgery to repair the broken bones. Personal care includes the use of ice and keeping the foot stabilized and elevated.

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

Read more about Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment for a Broken Foot
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