Learn How To Identify And Treat The Most Common Foot Disorders
Our feet get us where we need to go and keep us grounded, so dealing with foot disorders can affect our ability to enjoy even the most basic activities in life. Fortunately, the most common foot problems can be resolved with proper footwear, over-the-counter treatments, or a visit to a Seattle podiatrist. Keep your feet healthy by learning to recognize and treat the most common foot disorders.
A bunion is a bump on the side of the foot near the base of the big toe that causes it to deviate toward your other toes. A bunion consists of a fluid-filled sac under the skin. It forms when the joints in your big toe become swollen and tender because they no longer fit together properly.
Bunions tend to run in families and can be very painful. If a bunion is not severe, you can use a gel pad to cushion it. Other treatments include taping, night splints, foot exercises, and anti-inflammatory medication. Apply ice packs several times per day to bunions to reduce swelling. Avoid wearing shoes that are too tight or that crowd your toes to prevent existing bunions from getting worse. If the pain persists despite treatment, surgery may be necessary.
Corns And Calluses
Corns and calluses are areas of thick, hard skin that develop when bony parts of your feet continuously rub against your shoes. Corns typically develop between the toes, while calluses tend to develop on the soles of the feet or the side of the big toe.
You can get rid of rough skin by buffing it with a pumice stone, but the first line of defense against corns and calluses is wearing shoes that fit properly. It’s best to wear closed-toe shoes because your feet move around less in them compared with sandals. Place moleskin or padding on affected areas of your feet when wearing ill-fitting shoes. See your podiatrist in Seattle if corns or calluses are causing you pain.
Ingrown toenails occur when the sides or corners of your toenails curve down and put pressure on the skin, sometimes cutting into it. Ingrown toenails can cause pain, swelling, redness, and even infection. Ingrown toenails are the most common in the big toe and occur when you cut your toenails too short, round the corners of your toenails with a file, or wear shoes that are too tight. To ease discomfort in mild cases, you can soak your feet in warm water and Epsom salt to relax the tissue and separate the nail from the skin for a while. Prevent ingrown toenails by cutting your toenails straight across. If an ingrown toenail becomes painful, your Seattle podiatrist may perform minor surgery to remove all or part of the nail.
Plantar warts are skin growths caused by viruses that develop on the soles of the feet. Plantar warts are contagious and often spread through broken skin in public areas like communal showers and pools. Although plantar warts are harmless, they can be painful. Over-the-counter treatments are rarely effective in treating plantar warts, so it is recommended that you visit your podiatrist in Seattle, who can apply medicine to the wart, freeze the wart off, or remove the wart with surgery.
Give Your Heels, Toes, And Soles The Care They Need
At the Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington, our podiatrists effectively diagnose and treat a variety of foot ailments, whether you’re suffering from foot pain, plantar warts, or an ingrown toenail. We have locations in Seattle, Redmond, Kirkland, Renton, and Everett. To schedule an appointment, give us a call at (425) 678-3877 or fill out our online contact form for more information.