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December 2019

Monday, 30 December 2019 00:00

Can an Ingrown Toenail Become Infected?

A condition that is referred to as an ingrown toenail typically affects the big toe. It happens as a result of the sides of the toenail growing into the skin surrounding it, and can cause severe pain and discomfort. The symptoms that often accompany ingrown toenails can consist of redness, swelling, or a possible discharge at the edge of the nail. There are a variety of reasons why this condition may develop. These can include trimming the toenails improperly, wearing shoes that are too tight, or having a toe injury. Moderate relief may be found when the feet are washed and dried thoroughly, followed by using a small piece of cotton to gently push the affected nail away from the skin. Additionally, it generally helps to wear shoes that are larger in the toe area, as this may help to accelerate the healing process. If you have an ingrown toenail that has become infected, it is advised that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can properly diagnosis and treat this condition, which may include surgery for removal of the nail.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact one of our podiatrists of Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Living with foot pain is hard on your body.  Give us a call and let us find out what's wrong.

Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

The Role of a Podiatrist

The role of a podiatrist, which is also referred to as a chiropodist, is to help you  manage foot conditions and injuries. These can include foot deformities, ingrown toenails, hammertoes, and any type of heel pain. Additionally, a podiatrist is able to prescribe custom-made orthotics, and provide advice about choosing the correct footwear. Research has indicated that it is beneficial for diabetic patients to be under the care of a podiatrist who is able to properly trim the toenails, as well as treat an existing foot infection. Please consult with a podiatrist if you would like to learn more about the variety of foot conditions that can be managed and treated.

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek the care of a podiatrist if they have suffered a foot injury or have common foot ailments such as heal spurs, bunions, arch problems, deformities, ingrown toenails, corns, foot and ankle problems, etc.

Podiatric Treatment

A podiatrist will treat the problematic areas of the feet, ankle or lower leg by prescribing the following:

  • Physical therapy
  • Drugs
  • Orthotic inserts or soles
  • Surgery on lower extremity fractures

A common podiatric procedure a podiatrist will use is a scanner or force plate which will allow the podiatrist to know the designs of orthotics. Patients are then told to follow a series of tasks to complete the treatment. The computer will scan the foot a see which areas show weight distribution and pressure points. The podiatrist will read the analysis and then determine which treatment plans are available.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 23 December 2019 00:00

Three Types of Arthritis

There are numerous bones and joints each foot is comprised of. The painful condition that is known as arthritis may occur as a result of a loss of cartilage that is located in the joints. Research has indicated that there are three types of arthritis. A gradual wearing of the cartilage is referred to as osteoarthritis. Patients who are over fifty years old may be affected by this type of arthritis. An autoimmune disease may trigger rheumatoid arthritis, and can affect the surrounding tissues of the joints. Foot arthritis can occur when the joints in the feet become affected, and may cause difficulty when walking. Once the pain has diminished, it may be beneficial to incorporate a gentle stretching regime into your daily routine. If your feet are affected by arthritis, please consult with a podiatrist who can offer you the best treatment options.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Tuesday, 17 December 2019 00:00

How Does Gout Occur?

A condition that causes the big toe to become painful may be referred to as gout. Additional symptoms can include swelling, redness, and extreme discomfort. Patients who are afflicted with gout may find that their toe is so painful, it may be uncomfortable to have anything touch it. This condition is generally caused by elevated uric acid levels in the bloodstream. This can occur as a result of genetic factors, or by ingesting foods that have high purine levels. These can include shellfish, red meat, alcohol, and foods and drinks that have large amounts of sugar. There are measures that can be implemented which may help to prevent painful gout attacks. These typically consist of incorporating healthy eating habits into your daily routine, and practicing a gentle exercise regime. If you feel you have developed gout, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.

People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.

Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout

Wearing high heels can be a fashion statement. They can provide additional height, and can make the foot and leg appear slender. As desirable as they are to wear, there may be consequences that come with wearing this type of shoe. Common foot injuries that may result from wearing high heels can include sprained ankles, blisters on the toes or heels, or bunions. Additionally, patients may develop plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation of the tendon that connects the heel to the toes. There are methods that can be implemented which may help the feet to feel better when high heels are frequently worn. These can include stretching the calf muscles which may help to protect against Achilles tendon injuries, and wearing shoes that have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Additionally, it may be beneficial to alternate between wearing heels and flats. If you would like additional information about how high heels affect the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 02 December 2019 00:00

Possible Causes of Cracked Heels

The condition that is known as cracked heels often causes pain and discomfort. It can occur as a result of dry skin and will generally affect the outer edges of the heel. If the cracks are deep, they are referred to as fissures. There are several reasons why this condition can develop. These can include standing for long periods of time throughout the day, wearing shoes that have an open back, or existing medical conditions such as psoriasis. Some patients find moderate relief when they soak their feet in warm water, followed by using a good moisturizer that may help to restore soft skin. If you have a severe case of cracked heels, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer treatment and relief solution

If the skin on your feet starts to crack, you may want to see a podiatrist to find treatment. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

It is important to moisturize your cracked heels in order to prevent pain, bleeding, and infection. The reason cracked heels form is because the skin on the foot is too dry to support the immense pressure placed on them. When the foot expands, the dry skin on the foot begins to split.

Ways to Help Heal Them

  • Invest in a good foot cream
  • Try Using Petroleum Jelly
  • Ease up on Soaps
  • Drink Plenty of Water

Ways to Prevent Cracked Heels

  • Moisturize After Showering
  • Skip a Shower
  • Keep Shower Water Lukewarm
  • Don’t Scrub Your Feet

If you are unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels, seek guidance from a podiatrist. Your doctor will help you with any questions or information you may need. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
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