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If you have suffered a broken toe, it is typically a result of an injury that has occurred or from a heavy object falling on the foot. Often, people may stub or jam their toe which may lead to the toe becoming fractured. There are several symptoms that are easily identifiable, including bruising, pain while walking, or a deformed look to the toe. In more severe fractures, the bone may protrude from the skin and the nail may become injured which may cause a subungual hematoma, often referred to as an open fracture. Typical treatment methods may consist of the toe being placed in a splint which prevents mobility to ensure proper healing. A simple fracture generally will heal completely in approximately six weeks but complications may develop such as arthritis, pain, and stiffness from a more severely broken toe. A podiatrist can properly diagnose a broken toe and it’s advised to schedule a consultation when the injury occurs.

A broken toe can be very painful and lead to complications if not properly fixed. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What to Know About a Broken Toe

Although most people try to avoid foot trauma such as banging, stubbing, or dropping heavy objects on their feet, the unfortunate fact is that it is a common occurrence. Given the fact that toes are positioned in front of the feet, they typically sustain the brunt of such trauma. When trauma occurs to a toe, the result can be a painful break (fracture).

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Throbbing pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising on the skin and toenail
  • The inability to move the toe
  • Toe appears crooked or disfigured
  • Tingling or numbness in the toe

Generally, it is best to stay off of the injured toe with the affected foot elevated.

Severe toe fractures may be treated with a splint, cast, and in some cases, minor surgery. Due to its position and the pressure it endures with daily activity, future complications can occur if the big toe is not properly treated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 11 June 2018 00:00

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition, which causes the immune system to attack the joints. This condition is known to affect the hands, feet, and wrists. There are general symptoms to look for if you suspect that you may be suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. The most common symptom of this condition is joint pain. This pain usually presents itself as a throbbing sensation or as a constant ache in the joint. This joint pain is usually at its worst after periods of inactivity, which is why people with RA feel the majority of this type of pain in the morning. Symptoms of this condition may vary from person to person, and if you suspect that you have rheumatoid arthritis in your feet, you should speak with your podiatrist as soon as possible.

Because RA affects more than just your joints, including the joints in your feet and ankles, it is important to seek early diagnosis from your podiatrist  if you feel like the pain in your feet might be caused by RA. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s own immune system attacks the membranes surrounding the joints. Inflammation of the lining and eventually the destruction of the joint’s cartilage and bone occur, causing severe pain and immobility.

Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Feet

Although RA usually attacks multiple bones and joints throughout the entire body, almost 90 percent of cases result in pain in the foot or ankle area.

Symptoms

  • Swelling and pain in the feet
  • Stiffness in the feet
  • Pain on the ball or sole of feet
  • Joint shift and deformation

Diagnosis

Quick diagnosis of RA in the feet is important so that the podiatrist can treat the area effectively. Your doctor will ask you about your medical history, occupation, and lifestyle to determine the origin of the condition. Rheumatoid Factor tests help to determine if someone is affected by the disease.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 04 June 2018 00:00

Types of Heel Pain

An ailment that is known as plantar fasciitis is one of the most common foot conditions that involves heel pain. The general area for this to occur is typically under the heel and the pain may radiate throughout the foot. Most heel pain is caused by repetitive action which may include consistent pounding that the foot endures. In plantar fasciitis, the pain that is felt is often a result of inflammation of the soft tissue fibers. Other forms of heel pain include heel bursitis, tarsal tunnel syndrome, and Achilles tendinosis. Relief may be found in many of these conditions by wearing correct shoes that offer adequate cushioning or possibly considering the option of wearing orthotics that are designed specifically for your foot. A consultation with a podiatrist is suggested to acquire additional information about the causes and treatments for heel pain.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 29 May 2018 00:00

Healing Your Heel Pain

Plantar fasciitis tends to gradually develop over time and usually only affects one foot. Common symptoms for those with plantar fasciitis are a dull, sharp, or burning pain in the bottom of the foot. This pain tends to start up after prolonged activity due to increased inflammation. People who are overweight are at a greater risk of developing plantar fasciitis because of the increased amount of pressure on the plantar fascia ligaments. Consequently, women who are pregnant also are more likely to develop plantar fasciitis. Other people who are more likely to develop the condition are those with either flat feet, or high arches in their feet. Thankfully, there are some ways to treat pain that stems from plantar fasciitis. One of the most common methods of treatment is icing. In addition, stretching the calves will help alleviate pain in the foot. If you have any questions or concerns regarding plantar fasciitis, a consultation with a podiatrist is advised.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affects people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Monday, 21 May 2018 00:00

Causes of Athlete’s Foot

If you experience redness, itchiness, or blisters on the soles of the feet, you may have what is referred to as tinea pedis, or more commonly, athlete’s foot. It is caused by a fungal infection, and is can be extremely contagious. This type of fungus lives and thrives in moist places, and is commonly found in public showers, pools, and surrounding areas. It may affect the area between the toes in addition to the soles of the feet. There are several symptoms of athlete's foot that may be observed, including a rash that may appear, peeling skin on the soles of the feet, or an uncomfortable burning sensation. To prevent this condition from occurring it's suggested to wear appropriate shoes in public places, and to change your socks daily to avoid excessive perspiration between the toes. If you are experiencing chronic or severe athlete’s foot please schedule a consultation with a podiatrist.

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.

What is Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.

Prevention

The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:

  • Thoroughly washing and drying feet
  • Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
  • Using shower shoes in public showers
  • Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
  • Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot

Symptoms:

Athlete’s foot generally first occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left unchecked, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Scaly and peeling skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Recent research has shown a connection between foot pain and being obese. Foot ailments that may develop as a result of obesity include flat feet, arthritis, diabetes and general heel pain. Obesity may alter the general structure of the foot as a result of the heels and ankles enduring additional pressure caused by excess weight. Exercising may become difficult due to an increase in weight, and this may hinder one's ability to shed the excess pounds. Your feet will benefit if you choose to wear wide and supportive shoes, although there may be a limited selection of larger sizes necessary to accommodate them. Implementing a daily exercise routine and maintaining a healthy lifestyle may aid in combating obesity. This can typically be achieved by slowly beginning to properly stretch and exercise the feet. Please consider scheduling a consultation with a podiatrist for a recommended exercise program that may avoid foot pain.

The more you weigh, the harder your feet must work to support your body. If you’re an obese individual and are concerned about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Obesity and your Feet

People who are overweight are putting more pressure on their ankles, knees, and hips as well as their feet. This unfortunately can lead to variety of different issues.

Problems & Complications Stemming from Obesity

  • When the body is overweight, it tries to compensate by changing the way that it moves. An obese person may lean forward and put extra weight on the wrong part of the foot. This puts unnecessary stress on the feet.
  • Obese people are also more likely to develop type II diabetes which is a condition that causes a lot of foot problems. People with diabetes often don’t feel the cuts and sores that they may have on their feet, which can lead to more complicated and severe issues.
  • Plantar fasciitis is another foot condition that can be caused by obesity. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue along the bottom of the foot, which causes pain and stiffness while walking and climbing stairs.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 07 May 2018 00:00

How to Treat a Bunion

Bunions are typically the result of a bone deformity that affects the toes. The big toe typically leans toward the second toe, and this may cause a bump to form on the bottom of the big toe. Fluid may develop in the surrounding joint, in addition to the skin becoming thickened. This is often a painful condition, and as a result other ailments such as arthritis may develop. Research has shown that it’s beneficial to wear proper shoes that can accommodate the bunion and possibly diminish the pain and discomfort. Relief options may include using adequate padding over the bunion for protection, and wearing shoes that can adjust to the width of your foot. For bunions that have become extremely painful and unmanageable, surgery may be an option to consider. It’s suggested to schedule a consultation with a podiatrist to learn about the best treatment options for you.

If you are suffering from bunion pain, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is a Bunion?

Bunions are painful bony bumps that usually develop on the inside of the foot at the joint of the big toe. As the deformity increases over time, it may become painful to walk and wear shoes. Women are more likely to exacerbate existing bunions since they often wear tight, narrow shoes that shift their toes together. Bunion pain can be relieved by wearing wider shoes with enough room for the toes.

Causes

  • Genetics – some people inherit feet that are more prone to bunion development
  • Inflammatory Conditions - rheumatoid arthritis and polio may cause bunion development

Symptoms

  • Redness and inflammation
  • Pain and tenderness
  • Callus or corns on the bump
  • Restricted motion in the big toe

In order to diagnose your bunion, your podiatrist may ask about your medical history, symptoms, and general health. Your doctor might also order an x-ray to take a closer look at your feet. Nonsurgical treatment options include orthotics, padding, icing, changes in footwear, and medication. If nonsurgical treatments don’t alleviate your bunion pain, surgery may be necessary.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 30 April 2018 00:00

Where Does Toenail Fungus Come From?

There are several symptoms that are noticeable and will determine if you are afflicted by toenail fungus. The toenail will often appear to be a yellowish color and may be thick and rough in texture. In more severe cases, the toenail may lift from the skin or break off completely. Occasionally, small black dots can be seen on the nail, which is typically considered to be dirt that has collected underneath the toenail. This type of fungus generally thrives in warm and moist surroundings and can typically be found in pool areas and saunas. It will benefit the overall health of the toenail if this condition is treated promptly. This may include undergoing a proper diagnosis, followed by medications that can be applied to the nail for mild cases. Extreme situations may call for oral medications to be ingested, despite certain side effects that may follow. If you are afflicted by this ailment, it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist for additional information and treatment options relative to toenail fungus.

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 one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors 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 offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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If you observe that your toenails have developed a blue or grayish hue, you may have what is referred to as poor circulation. Since the feet are typically the first area of the body where this condition is noticed, a blue or gray tinge is generally a good indicator that circulation concerns exist. There may be several reasons for this ailment to occur, and these may include a sedentary lifestyle, type 2 diabetes, or obesity. Consistent movement during the day, such as standing or walking, can help in allowing the arteries to freely carry blood and oxygen. Common symptoms that may be experienced can include a weakened pulse, cold sensations in the feet, or you may notice discolored skin. There are avenues that can be implemented to help poor circulation, including smoking cessation, incorporating exercise into your daily routine, and wearing comfortable shoes. If you would like information about poor circulation, please schedule a consultation with a podiatrist to discuss the best preventative techniques that are right for you.

While poor circulation itself isn’t a condition; it is a symptom of another underlying health condition you may have. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) can potentially lead to poor circulation in the lower extremities. PAD is a condition that causes the blood vessels and arteries to narrow. In a linked condition called atherosclerosis, the arteries stiffen up due to a buildup of plaque in the arteries and blood vessels. These two conditions can cause a decrease in the amount of blood that flows to your extremities, therefore resulting in pain.

Symptoms:

Some of the most common symptoms of poor circulation are:

  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Throbbing or stinging pain in limbs
  • Pain
  • Muscle Cramps

Treatment for poor circulation often depends on the underlying condition that causes it. Methods for treatment may include insulin for diabetes, special exercise programs, surgery for varicose veins, or compression socks for swollen legs.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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The feet are the foundation of the body, and the majority of runners are aware of the importance of choosing to wear proper running shoes. It’s helpful to be aware of your foot’s shape, as this will aid in buying shoes that fit properly. Shoes with added stability are often purchased by runners who have flat feet, and runners with exceptionally high arches are prone to choose shoes that have additional padding. Typically, most runners will go up half a size when buying running shoes, which will allow ample room for the toes to move about. When the right shoes are chosen that are a perfect fit for your feet, the sport of running may be enjoyed to its fullest extent.

If you are a runner, wearing the right running shoe is essential. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Choosing the Right Running Shoe for Your Foot Type

To increase performance and avoid the risk of injury, it is important to choose the right running shoe based on your foot type. The general design of running shoes revolves around pronation, which is how the ankle rolls from outside to inside when the foot strikes the ground.

  • Neutral runners are able to choose from a wide variety of shoes, including minimalist shoes or even going barefoot.
  • Runners who overpronate, or experience an over-abundance of ankle rolling, should choose shoes that provide extra motion control and stability.
  • Runners who underpronate, or supinate, have feet that have high arches and lack flexibility, preventing shock absorption. They require shoes with more flexibility and cushion.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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