Are you dealing with heel pain? If so, you aren’t alone. Foot pain, particularly heel pain, is one of the most common complaints and most people will deal with pain at some point during their lifetime. Whether you are on your feet all day for work or you are a runner, there are many risk factors that can play into your likelihood to deal with heel pain. If heel pain is happening to you, you may be wondering what’s causing it and how you can get rid of the pain quickly.
Causes of Heel Pain
As you might imagine, there are many reasons why you might be experiencing heel pain. The root cause will also determine the best course of action for getting your symptoms under control while providing the optimal healing environment for a speedy recovery.
The most common cause of heel pain is an acute inflammatory condition known as plantar fasciitis, in which the thick band of tissue that runs along the soles of the feet from the toes to the heel (known as the plantar fascia) becomes inflamed. Of course, there are other reasons people experience heel pain. Other causes include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Achilles tendon rupture
- Stress fracture
- Tarsal tunnel syndrome
- Heel spur
- Osteomyelitis (an infection of the bone)
- Page’s disease of bone
- Peripheral neuropathy
Heel Pain Treatment Options
For more mild-to-moderate cases of heel pain, your podiatrist may recommend simple conservative treatment options that you can incorporate into your daily routine from the comfort of home. This is usually the first course of action, unless the condition is more serious. Only once we’ve exhausted at-home care and pain is still present do we decide on more aggressive tactics for handling your symptoms.
Common at-home heel pain treatment options include:
- OTC pain relievers (e.g. ibuprofen)
- Icing the heel several times a day
- Bracing or splinting the foot
- Wearing custom orthotics (shoe inserts)
- Wearing protective and supportive shoes
- Resting and avoiding certain activities or high-impact exercises
If you’ve tried these treatment options for weeks and still don’t notice any change in your symptoms—or if symptoms get worse—then it’s time to visit your foot doctor again to determine the next step. If pain and swelling are severe we may recommend steroid injections, extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) or ultrasound therapy. In rare cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the imbalance, deformity, or problem that’s causing your chronic or severe heel pain.
Don’t let heel pain affect your day-to-day life when there are simple and easy solutions to manage your symptoms and promote faster healing. Turn to a podiatrist who will be able to handle your heel pain and get your foot health back on track.
When you look at your feet, you probably don’t inspect them thoroughly. A lot of people forget about their feet during their daily lives because they are so busy getting from one place to another. Sadly, a lot of our foot and ankle problems go ignored because of this common occurrence. Early prevention can help a person fight off disease, injury and other conditions. With just a quick glance every now and then they can even see if they have white spots growing on their toenails.
Causes of White Spots
- If you have a fungal infection on your feet, it could be appearing on your toenails as white spots. Feet that are constantly enclosed in shoes are especially prone to fungal infections due to the dark, moist nature inside the shoes.
- If you are wearing shoes that are too tight, it can be depriving the feet of much-needed air. Some microorganisms thrive in this environment and grow. Fungus is well known for growing in this condition and showing up as white spots.
- If you do not have a well-balanced diet, you could get white spots on your nails. Calcium deficiency can appear as white spots on the nails.
- Zinc deficiency can also cause white spots on the nails.
- If you injure on your toe, it can cause fungus to grow and white to appear on the nails.
How To Get Rid of White Spots on Toenails
While white nails are not life-threatening, they can be seen as a cosmetic issue or may be due to an underlying disease. If you notice white spots on the toenails, it is important to see a podiatrist immediately for treatment. Often a podiatrist will start by prescribing an anti-fungal cream. If this course of action does not work, they may order more tests or biopsies to make a better determination of the cause.
White nails can be a real bummer, especially if you were planning on wearing those nice new summer sandals you bought with the open toes. Do not let these spots get you down! Instead, call Dr. Andrew H. Cohen of Mid-Michigan Foot & Ankle Center, located in Saginaw and Bay City, Michigan. You can reach our office at 989-790-8009 or make an appointment online today. White spots are not a permanent part of your toenails.
Curing the Achy Feet
Suffering from aching feet can really run you down. It makes everyday tasks feel harder and more exhausting. When your feet swell, it can also be harder to find a pair of shoes that fit you comfortably. This can make it harder to get out the door and deal with the simple tasks your daily life demands. Instead of moping around, it is important to call a foot doctor. Not only can a foot doctor diagnose your pain, but he or she can also prescribe different treatments to help deal with the pain. Metatarsalgia, an overuse injury, is very treatable once diagnosed. Here are some treatments a podiatrist may suggest:
- Rest your feet. After a long day, your feet can get tired and begin to hurt. Resting takes pressure of the feet and can provide relief.
- Buy the right shoes. Properly fitting footwear can also remove pressure from the foot which can reduce or cure swelling, inflammation and pain.
- Shed some extra weight. Extra body weight puts more pressure on the feet which can cause them to become aggravated, damaged and sore. Less weight reduces the effect.
- Get out and exercise. Exercise can strengthen muscles and help the foot become stronger overall. Stronger and healthier feet are less likely to suffer from metatarsalgia.
- Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs can be useful to quell the swell and give relief to those achy feet.
- Get some custom orthotics. A podiatrist can make these inserts for you in their office. They are custom made for your foot and can easily be put into a shoe. Not only do they support the foot, but they can reduce pain and swelling drastically.
Metatarsalgia pain can severely impact your everyday lifestyle. In order to prevent this pain from ruling your life, it is important to see a podiatrist. Not only can they diagnose your problem but they can help manage the pain too. Call Dr. Andrew H. Cohen, of Mid-Michigan Foot & Ankle Center, located in Saginaw and Bay City, Michigan. You can reach our office at 989-790-8009 or make an appointment online today. Metatarsalgia doesn’t have to keep you laid up.
The warmer days are starting to become more and more dominant and that means a lot of fun beach weekends to enjoy. It may be tempting to grab your flip-flops and run out the door, but, before you hit the road, consider swapping out those kicks. Flip-flops are a convenient type of footwear that are widely worn all over the United States. They are especially great for hot days to help prevent sweaty feet. Need to kick off your shoes and run into the ocean in a flash? Flip-flops also seem to be the best answer in this scenario. What many people don’t know is that flip-flops can cause permanent damage to the feet if they are worn regularly. Here is why:
- Flip-flops offer no support for your feet. Their naturally-flat shape provides no arch support whatsoever. This means that the full shock of your weight when walking is impacting your arch and slowly damaging it over time.
- Flip-flops aren’t very thick. Most of these sandals are less than an inch thick. This means they have little shock support and that they are also easy to pierce. If you step on a nail or other object, it is very likely that it can make its way through your sandal and into your foot. This wound can inflict infection or damage muscles.
- There is not a lot of grip. These sandals do not tend to have a lot of grip, which means that if you are hurrying along a tile, wood, or other slick surface, there is a good chance that you will come tumbling down.
- Most people buy too large or too small. Flip-flops that are too big can become a tripping hazard. Your ankle will suffer dearly from a sprain or break from a fall. Shoes that are too small can cause pressure in between the toes where the throng is. This rubbing and pressure can cause blisters, corns and calluses.
- Your feet are also exposed to the harsh rays of the sun. Most people forget to apply sunblock to their feet. When wearing open sandals without sunblock, you are putting your feet at risk for a sunburn which could lead to skin melanoma later on.
What can I wear instead?
There are many great supportive sandal options available for the summer. Many of them come with convenient adjustable straps that help you get the perfect fit. These sandals also have a lot of support and tread so that you aren’t taking a tumble and injuring yourself unnecessarily. Think they aren’t the best looking? Keep searching – great-fitting sandals that are also fashionable can be found with a little extra diligence and patience.
If you are injured while wearing flip-flops, be sure to call a podiatrist immediately. The injury can be exacerbated over time. Call Dr. Andrew H. Cohen, of Mid-Michigan Foot & Ankle Center, located in Saginaw and Bay City, Michigan. You can reach our office at 989-790-8009 or make an appointment online today. Don’t let flip-flops slow you down.
Functioning normally when you are regularly in pain can be extremely difficult. Pain can race through the foot at the most inopportune times and can cause you to falter during the most routine tasks. Sometimes the pain comes sharply, while at other times it burns and tingles. Living with this type of pain can be due to a neuroma. A neuroma is a condition in which a nerve becomes inflamed and has excess growth. It wreaks havoc on the foot and can greatly impact your lifestyle.
When it comes to neuromas, there is not always a precise reason as to why one develops. There are different types of behaviors or circumstances that can contribute to the making of a neuroma:
Deformities of the foot that impact mobility can be linked to a neuroma. For example, a flat foot or high arch can cause a neuroma to develop. This is because feet that are not stable while moving around can cause damage to the joints of the foot. The joints have many different nerves in and around them that can become irritated and turn into a neuroma.
A traumatic injury or incident can also cause a neuroma to grow. If a nerve is damaged and begins to swell or become inflamed, it can spur the growth of a neuroma.
Wearing the wrong shoes can also propel your foot into the world of the neuroma. If your shoes are too narrow and squeeze your toes, or put pressure on your forefoot in general, you could find yourself with a neuroma in no time.
Overuse or repeated stress of the foot can create a neuroma. Athletes who are constantly jumping or moving around are especially prone to neuromas due to the constant stress and use of their feet for their passion.
Neuromas can appear slowly and you may not even realize you have one until it’s too late. Symptoms of a neuroma include forefoot pain and pain between the toes, tingling, numbness, swelling, and pain when bearing weight on the ball of the foot. Neuroma pain can impact your daily life and functionality.
Suspect you are suffering from neuroma pain? Don’t wait until walking is unbearable – take action now by visiting a podiatrist. Call Dr. Andrew H. Cohen of Mid-Michigan Foot & Ankle Center located in Saginaw and Bay City, Michigan. You can reach our office at 989-790-8009 or make an appointment online today. Do not let neuroma pain rule your life.
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