Posts for: August, 2014
The feet are perhaps one of the most overlooked parts of the body. But did you know that they are also some of your most important?
Don’t wait until something is wrong to give your feet extra attention. Keeping your feet feeling healthy and looking beautiful is easy. Here’s how:
- Inspect your feet regularly, being mindful of any changes in appearance, color and texture.
- Maintain good foot hygiene by washing and drying feet regularly.
- Choose proper shoes, and always wear the correct size.
- Keep feet dry to prevent bacterial infections by wearing moisture-wicking socks.
- Alternate shoes each day.
- Trim toenails straight across and gently file away sharp corners to prevent an ingrown.
- Avoid walking barefoot to prevent injury.
- When wearing sandals, remember to apply sunblock.
- If your feet hurt, don’t ignore the pain! Consult a New York podiatrist if symptoms worsen or do not resolve.
If you have diabetes, you should pay extra attention to your feet as you are at a higher risk for developing foot problems due to nerve damage and poor circulation. Mild foot problems, such as ulcers, corns, cracked heels and ingrown toenails can turn into serious complications without proper care. Since even the smallest cut can have serious consequences, it is important that people with diabetes inspect their feet every day and visit their New York podiatrist for routine exams.
When to Consult Kenneth R. Meisler, D.P.M., P.L.L.C. & Associates
If you are experiencing foot pain, don’t ignore it! Consult your podiatrist. Pain, redness, swelling or discoloration are not normal symptoms and should be examined by a trained foot specialist.
Like adults, children and adolescents can experience a variety of foot and ankle problems. Many foot problems, such as flat foot are congenital, while other problems including heel pain or ingrown toenails are usually the result of an injury.
Because of a child’s rapidly growing bones and tendons, however, many confusing symptoms associated with their foot and ankle problems go unnoticed. For this reason, it is important that parents pay attention to subtle symptoms. A thorough examination of your child's feet by a New York podiatrist periodically may detect an underlying defect or condition and help minimize problems later in life.
Common Foot Problems
Children can experience a variety of foot problems, many of which go away as the child’s feet become more developed, such as pigeon toes, flat feet and knock knees. In most cases these congenital foot and leg problems do not require any medical intervention. Other common issues that may warrant a visit to the podiatrist include:
Plantar warts are common in children, especially during warm months when kids are more likely to walk barefoot. Forming on the bottom of the feet, these warts are caused by a virus that enters the skin, most often in public areas such as pools or locker rooms. The condition can be very uncomfortable — like walking on a small pebble or stone—but also highly preventable and treatable.
Ankle sprains are very common foot injuries for active kids, especially those who participate in sports. Sprains occur when the ligaments supporting the ankle are stretched or torn. Mild ankle sprains heal with little treatment, while severe tearing may require more extensive care including extended immobilization followed by physical therapy. As a general rule, rest, ice, compress and elevate the child’s ankle immediately following the injury.
Ingrown toenails occur when one or both sides of the nail begin to break through and grow into the soft skin of the toe. This can lead to painful irritation and infection. Common causes of ingrown toenails include poor fitting footwear, toe injuries or poor nail trimming. Caught early, a child’s ingrown can be treated at home, but if pain persists or the condition worsens, treatment by a podiatrist is necessary to eliminate the infection.
Choose Proper Footwear
Many pre-existing foot conditions can be relieved and new problems prevented by simply ensuring your child is wearing proper shoes. Shoes that are too tight can cause blisters, calluses and corns on the toes and heels. Ingrown toenails can also develop and become infected. A child’s feet are constantly growing and developing, so it may be necessary to change shoe size every few months. Additionally, with time shoes have a tendency to lose proper cushioning and arch support. Footwear that shows a lack of shock absorption or wear and tear should also be replaced to reduce the risk for injuries.
If you notice your child limping, constantly rubbing their feet, tripping frequently or consistently complaining of foot pain, then have them examined by your New York podiatrist or physician. Many problems can be easily identified and treated, and early intervention is the key.
Whether you suffer from chronic heel pain, are embarrassed by toenail fungus or were recently diagnosed with diabetes, you can benefit from visiting a professional podiatrist.
Podiatrists provide medical and surgical care for people suffering foot, ankle and lower leg problems, such as corns, warts, bunions and sprains. Common conditions, such as arthritis, diabetes and peripheral arterial disease, which can damage the feet, can also be diagnosed and treated by a podiatrist. Even back pain can be traced to your feet and relieved through proper evaluation and treatment by a skilled foot specialist.
Not all foot and ankle problems warrant an appointment with a podiatrist. In some cases, rest, ice or even a change in footwear is enough to reduce the pain and get you back on your feet. But when foot pain and discomfort cannot be resolved by home treatment, you need a professional’s care—someone who specializes in foot-related injuries and disorders.
When to Call Kenneth R. Meisler, D.P.M., P.L.L.C. & Associates
Feet are invariably the most ignored parts of the body. Too many people dismiss foot health until there is a serious, painful problem.Whenever a foot or ankle problem lasts for several days, contact a New York podiatrist. Other signs that indicate a worsening condition and warrant medical attention, include:
- Foot discoloration
- Pain and swelling in one foot
- A foot sore or wound that doesn’t heal
How often you should visit a podiatrist depends on the individual. Regular appointments can help you better understand the stresses and strains put on your feet and lower legs on a daily basis. Long-term care and prevention is also extremely important for individuals with diabetes, as podiatrists help prevent ulcerations and loss of limb with early diagnosis and care.
Remember, foot pain should never be taken lightly. Always consult Kenneth R. Meisler, D.P.M., P.L.L.C. & Associates for proper diagnosis of foot disorders.
Corns are thickened areas of skin that develop in response to excessive pressure and friction. This can occur when one toe rubs repeatedly against another, or when the toes rub against ill-fitting footwear. Typically hard and circular, corns are usually not a serious problem, but can be quite painful if untreated, especially when wearing shoes.
Since corns are often symptoms of underlying problems such as faulty bone structures or abnormal gait, self-treatment should only involve footwear modification. Never attempt to cut or scrape away a corn on your own as this can lead to infection. It’s best to consult Kenneth R. Meisler, D.P.M., P.L.L.C. & Associates first as many times over-the-counter treatments fail to effectively treat the underlying foot disorder and can damage the healthy surrounding skin if used incorrectly.
A podiatrist will assess your corn, determine the cause, and help you determine a treatment plan to manage the pain and eliminate pressure that is causing the corn. These conservative treatments may include padding to prevent pressure, footwear modifications and orthotics to relive stress under the foot. When pain is persistent or conservative treatment isn’t effective, minimally-invasive surgical correction may be recommended to remove the corn or repair the bone structure beneath the corn.
The surgery can often be performed in the doctor's office, the recovery time is brief, and many patients obtain relief within days. Corns always require consultation with an experienced podiatrist at our New York office. When treated early, most corns can be resolved with non-surgical treatments.