If you suffer from heel pain, you may find it difficult to participate in daily life without discomfort and pain. It’s important to talk to your podiatrists at Advanced Foot and Ankle Center in McKinney, and Prosper, TX, so that they can help develop treatment options to help reduce your heel pain and help you feel comfortable participating in your daily life again.
How to Treat Heel Pain
Heel pain is usually caused by plantar fasciitis and can make your daily life hard to deal with. With plantar fasciitis, the heel will feel stiff and sore and will usually be worse after waking up or after sitting for a long period of time. It may feel like the muscle in your heels is stiff and needs to be stretched out.
Your podiatrists in McKinney, and Prosper, TX, can recommend some treatments that you can do at home to help relieve the pain you may be experiencing. Some common forms of treatment may be:
- Stretching exercises
- Wearing properly fitted shoes
- Icing your heels daily
- Limiting physical activities
- Wearing orthopedic shoe inserts
- Ibuprofen to reduce pain and inflammation
- Wearing a removable walking cast
- Physical therapy
- Wearing a night splint
If these at-home treatments don’t help to reduce your pain, your podiatrist may recommend injection therapy or surgery to reduce pain. Surgery is usually only offered as the last form of treatment if non-surgical approaches don’t help to relieve the pain that you are experiencing. Even after your pain is lessened, it’s important that you continue caring for your feet so that you can be sure to keep your pain as minimal as possible.
Contact Your Podiatrist Today!
Stop living with heel pain and contact your podiatrists today to help treat your heel pain! Contact Advanced Foot and Ankle Center in McKinney, and Prosper, TX, today at (972) 542-2155.
Foot care is something that is important to your overall well-being and is something that is often overlooked. There are some basic guidelines you can follow in order to keep your feet healthy and feeling good.
1. Don’t ignore unusual pain. If you are feeling a pain in your foot, it’s important you investigate it. See your podiatrist. They can help identify the source and develop a treatment plan to make sure that your feet are healthy.
2. Inspect your feet regularly. It’s easy to ignore irregularities around your feet, which is why it’s important to keep an eye on them. It’s important to be sure that there aren’t any drastic changes in color or temperature, and to make sure that your toenails aren’t too thick or discolored and that you dont have a rash. Also be sure to pay attention to cracks or cuts in the skin, and to make sure that there aren’t any growths on your feet.
3. Keep proper foot hygiene. It’s important to wash your feet regularly, even between the toes, The soap does not just get down there on its own! Make sure that your feet totally dry before putting on socks and shoes, especially between your toes. It’s also important to regularly trim toenails. Be careful to only trim nails straight across and not into the sides or corners to avoid ingrown toenails. If you are a person with diabetes, poor circulation, or heart problems, be sure to go to your podiatrist when trimming toenails in order to avoid infection.
4. Get proper fitting shoes. When purchasing shoes, try to go later in the day when your feet are at their largest and make sure to replace worn out shoes. Make sure that the shoes you pick are the correct shoe for whatever activities you are engaging in. Also, it’s important to not wear the same pair of shoes or socks multiple days in a row.
5. Avoid walking barefoot. When walking around barefoot, your feet are more prone to injury.
6. Don’t forget your feet! When wearing sandals, it’s very important to apply sunscreen to your feet as well as the rest of your body!
Following these guidelines will help keep your feet happy and healthy, and in turn help your overall well-being!
Advanced Foot & Ankle
While we know that there are a lot of reasons why someone might have dry, cracked feet including being on your feet all day, long-distance running or winter weather, your thyroid might also be playing a role. Many people with hypothyroidism, an underactive thyroid, complain of dry, cracked skin on the soles of their feet, particularly the heels. You may also notice that you get deep, painful fissures or that your skin seems almost leathery in thickness and appearance. This could be a sign to have your thyroid checked.
Since your thyroid is responsible for your metabolism it’s not too surprising that an underactive thyroid slows the metabolism, which in turn causes the body’s temperature to drop. This is why you notice that your feet and hands always seem to be cold to the touch. You may notice that this problem is made worse during cold weather. Some people with hypothyroidism deal with a condition known as Raynaud’s phenomenon, in which the feet and hands are so cold that they go numb and turn blue or white.
Again, there are a lot of things that can lead to swollen feet; however, if you notice swelling in your feet and ankles rather regularly then you may want to have your thyroid checked. Since people with hypothyroidism are also prone to developing tarsal tunnel syndrome, which can lead to permanent nerve damage if left untreated, you must have a podiatrist you can turn to for regular care if you have been diagnosed with a thyroid disorder.
Has walking or wearing shoes become painful due to an ingrown toenail? Your McKinney and Prosper, TX, podiatrists at Advanced Foot and Ankle Center offer treatments that end the pain of ingrown toenails.
What causes ingrown toenails?
Ingrown toenails can be caused by:
- The way you cut your nails: Do you round the edges of your toenails? Rounding makes it much easier for the nails to grow into your skin. Cutting toenails straight across reduces your risk of ingrown nails.
- Curved nails: You're much more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if your nails curve downward.
- Nail trauma: Even if you cut your toenails straight across, you can still develop an ingrown nail if you stub your toe or something heavy falls on it.
- The shoes and socks you wear: Tight shoes and socks press against your skin, forcing the edges of the nails into the skin.
- Excessive sweating: Sweat moistens and softens the skin, making it much easier for your toenail to grow into the skin at the sides of your nails.
- Fungal infections: Toenail fungus thickens your nail, increasing your ingrown toenail risk.
When should you visit your podiatrist?
If your ingrown toenail has just begun to grow into the skin, you may be able to free it by inserting a piece of dental floss or cotton under the nail after soaking your foot in warm water. (Don't try to free your nail at home if you have diabetes, as you have a much higher risk for infection due to the disease.)
It's time to call your McKinney and Prosper foot doctor if your nail can't be gently freed at home. You'll also want to schedule an appointment if the pain is severe or interferes with your life, you have ingrown toenails often, or you think you might have an infection. Signs and symptoms of an infected ingrown toenail include redness, pus on your toe, red streaks on your skin, pain, tenderness, or a throbbing sensation.
Your podiatrist can perform a minor, in-office surgical procedure to remove the trapped part of the nail. You may also need to take antibiotics to prevent or treat an infection. If you have frequent ingrown toenails, removing the nail may be the best solution.
Do you struggle with ingrown toenails? Call your podiatrists in McKinney and Prosper, TX, at (972) 542-2155 to schedule an appointment.
Many people can easily manage their bunion symptoms and slow the progression of this common foot deformity through simple lifestyle changes. There are several approaches you can take to reduce bunion pain including,
- Maintain a healthy weight or lose excess weight, which can take pressure off the feet
- Wear shoes that don’t put pressure on the bunion, that provide ample support, and that have lots of room for your toes
- Look for shoes that have a low heel (high heels can make bunions worse)
- Apply a gel or protective pad to the bunion before putting on shoes
- Talk to your podiatrist about the benefits of custom orthotics (aka shoe inserts) and how they could take pressure off the bunion when standing or in motion
- Take pain relievers, whether over-the-counter or prescribed by your doctor
- Warm or cold therapy such as warm soaks or applying ice can also improve swelling, inflammation, and pain (some people prefer the heat to the cold and vice versa; it’s a matter of preference. Try both and see what works best for you!)
- Talk with your podiatrist to see if a night splint could ease morning stiffness and pain
Of course, there are certain scenarios in which a podiatrist may recommend getting surgery to correct the bunion. Here’s when you may want to consider getting surgery,
- You are in significant and chronic pain
- Your bunion is severely enlarged, and the big toe is crossing over the other toes
- Your activities are limited due to your bunion
- Your bunion pain persists for more than a year
- Nonsurgical methods aren’t completely controlling your bunion pain
- You are developing other foot problems such as bursitis or hammertoes due to your bunion
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