Have you ever had an ankle sprain? If you have, you well remember the pain, bruising, and limited ability to walk. The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons says that ankle sprains number in the millions annually in the United States alone. Read here about the symptoms of this common injury and also how your West Orange, NJ, podiatrists at the Foot Health Center can help.
What is an ankle sprain?
It's a tearing or separation of the three fibrous ligaments which connect bone to bone. It happens in response to a sudden twisting motion if someone runs on an uneven surface, steps into a hole or simply wears shoes that don't properly support the ankle.
- Limited range of motion and ability to walk and bear weight
Diagnosis and treatment of an ankle sprain
Your experienced podiatrists at the Foot Health Center in West Orange have diagnosed and treated many ankle sprains. They listen carefully to patient symptoms, visually inspect the ankle and test range of motion. An X-ray or other sophisticated imaging pinpoints the injured area and rules out fracture.
Treatment for ankle sprains depends upon the extent of the injury and could include:
- Rest (staying off your feet because continued walking produces additional injury)
- Ice to reduce swelling and pain
- Compression with an elastic bandage
- Elevation of the foot
- A boot or soft cast to provide support
- Crutches to avoid weight bearing on the limb
- Over the counter analgesics, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain
- Physical therapy to improve range of motion and to strengthen the extremity to prevent further injury
If necessary, your foot doctors can perform surgery to stabilize the ankle and repair severely compromised ligaments. Follow-up care with physical therapy is very important after surgery to return the ankle to full function, stability and strength.
Trust the experts
If you've injured your ankle, don't guess at the extent of the problem or at how to treat it. Get expert and compassionate care from the podiatrists at Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ. We are open Monday through Friday and have availability for emergencies. Call (973) 731-1266.
An ingrown toenail usually begins as a minor inconvenience. Unfortunately, this condition can quickly go from mild to severe, causing serious pain and discomfort. Luckily, you can learn to prevent ingrown toenails and identify factors which could contribute to ingrown toenail development with Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ.
What causes an ingrown toenail?
A toenail becomes ingrown when it curls down on the sides, putting pressure onto or even piercing the skin. If left untreated, ingrown toenails can cause pain, discomfort, swelling, and infection. Ingrown toenails occur for several reasons, including:
- wearing ill-fitting shoes
- improperly cutting the toenails
- wearing too-tight socks
- underlying conditions
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
Preventing an ingrown toenail is often as simple as making some small lifestyle changes. Avoid wearing too-tight, high-heeled, or narrow shoes which do not allow the toes to sit flat in the toe box. When cutting the toenails, you should take care to cut them straight across the top and avoid cutting them too short. Do not curve the sides down as this contributes to the development of ingrown toenails. Be sure to keep the feet clean and dry at all times, wearing a new pair of socks daily. This will help decrease the chances of an ingrown toenail becoming infected.
Ingrown Toenail Treatments in West Orange, NJ
Depending on its severity, treating an ingrown toenail usually begins at home. Soaking the foot in a warm water bath helps reduce swelling and decrease pain. After soaking the toe, place a piece of cotton or dental floss under the side of the toenail to help it grow above the skin rather than into it. Over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen can also reduce pain and swelling. Wearing open-toed shoes can help reduce irritation.
If these methods of home treatment fail, your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic cream to apply to the affected toe. They may also lift the nail to help aid the growth of the nail. In severe cases, your doctor will remove part of the nail. If your ingrown toenail recurs often, your podiatrist may suggest removing the entire nail and part of the nail bed to prevent that portion of the nail from growing back in the future.
For more information on ingrown toenails, please contact your podiatrist at Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ. Call 973-731-1266 to schedule your appointment with your Foot Health Center podiatrist today!
If you are dealing with heel pain, it’s time to find out what might be behind this issue.
Heel pain can be a nasty and annoying issue. One day you could be absolutely fine and be enjoying an amazing run in the beautiful weather and the next morning you could find yourself barely able to move without pain. If this sounds like something you are dealing with, our West Orange, NJ podiatrists are here to help.
The Causes of Heel Pain
In many cases, heel pain is caused by an inflammatory condition known as plantar fasciitis. If you have pain due to plantar fasciitis you may notice that the pain is located more on the bottom of the heel. The pain may be worse when you first get up in the morning and may come and go throughout the day. Surprisingly enough, you may find that the pain dissipates or goes away while working out. Of course, that pain will often come screaming back shortly after.
Other causes of heel pain include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Bone spurs
- Stress fractures
- Bursitis of the heel
- Heel pad inflammation
- Bruised bone
When to Turn to a Doctor
Sometimes you can easily manage your discomfort all on your own; however, it might be time to pick up the phone and call our West Orange, NJ, foot doctors if you are dealing with any of these issues:
- Severe pain or swelling
- Pain that makes it impossible to put weight on the foot
- If you can’t bend the foot or if you are experiencing a significantly limited range of motion
- A fever along with your heel pain
- Numbness or tingling in the heel
- If heel pain has lasted over a week
- If heel pain is actually getting worse and not better
- If your pain lingers even if you aren’t standing on the foot or moving around
Treating Your Heel Pain
Fortunately, there are many simple solutions for managing your symptoms until your foot properly heals. Most patients will be able to get away with resting to reduce pain and swelling. More moderate-to-severe cases might experience better pain relief from steroid injections.
Splinting the heel at night, wearing custom orthotics (shoe inserts) and performing certain stretching and strengthening exercises can also improve your symptoms. If we find that your condition isn’t improving despite these measures, then shockwave therapy may be the next course of action to bolster healing.
Heel pain doesn’t have to alter your plans. By following these simple tips you can quickly get on the road to recovery. Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ, can help. Call us today if you are dealing with new or worsening heel pain.
Caring for your feet is an often overlooked task that, in the long run, becomes very important. Foot care is especially important if you are diabetic as side effects of this condition can affect your feet’s ability to feel things correctly, resulting in serious injury or even infections. Learn more about what makes diabetic foot care important and the best way to go about it with Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ.
Why is diabetic foot care important?
According to the National Institute of Health, about 15% of diabetics will end up with a foot ulcer at some point during their life. Diabetes can cause damage to the nerves and reduced blood flow in the feet, a combination which makes for a potentially dangerous situation. These two side effects cause decreased feeling in the foot, meaning that a diabetic may not notice a small cut or scrape, ingrown toenail or bruise in time to treat it. This situation could result in the wound becoming infected, which can spread to other parts of the body or cause serious conditions which, in extreme cases, could result in amputation of the limb.
I’m diabetic. How can I keep my feet healthy?
Keeping your feet healthy begins with simply giving them a once over every day. Take the time to examine each foot, ensuring that there are no cuts, scrapes, bruises or other abnormalities. Be sure to keep your feet clean and dry and wear clean socks daily. Always shake out your shoes before wearing them to avoid a rock or other debris from injuring your foot throughout the day. Trim your toenails regularly and cut them straight across rather than rounding the edges to prevent conditions like ingrown toenails.
Diabetic Foot Care in West Orange, NJ
One of the most beneficial tools to have in your diabetic foot care tool belt is your podiatrist. By going in for routine foot examinations, you could prevent or catch and treat foot-related conditions which could have disastrous results. Additionally, your doctor can help provide you with helpful information or tips on caring for your feet.
For more information on diabetic foot care, please contact your podiatrist at Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ. Call 973-731-1266 to schedule your appointment today!
Are you worried that your foot symptoms could be eczema?
Are you suffering from itchy, red and blistered feet? Of course, this issue can be mighty unpleasant and not something you should just have to deal with. It can be challenging to tackle the issue effectively if you aren’t sure what is causing your symptoms. Could it be eczema or is it a nasty bout of athlete’s foot? What puts someone at risk for developing eczema on their feet? Our West Orange, NJ podiatrists have the answers.
Dyshidrotic eczema (also referred to as dyshidrosis) is when eczema appears on your feet and hands. If you have this condition you will notice itchy fluid-filled blisters on your feet. They typically last a couple weeks and you may notice flare-ups occur while under stress or when exposed to a certain allergen.
Am I at risk?
It’s believed that you are at greater risk for developing this type of eczema if you have high levels of physical or emotional stress. If you have seasonal allergies this may also leave you more susceptible to developing this skin problem. Those who are exposed to metal salts such as nickel or chromium may also be at an increased risk of developing this form of eczema.
What are the symptoms of dyshidrotic eczema?
Those with this skin condition will have blisters on their feet or hands. These blisters can sometimes grow rather large and also cause pain. These blisters are typically itchy and the skin surrounding these blisters may be dry and flaky. You may also notice that the skin is cracked. It can take several weeks for the blisters to finally dry up and for cracked skin to heal.
How is it treated?
Fortunately, there are many ways to tackle this problem. There are certain corticosteroid creams that you can apply on the skin to treat more mild flare-ups. You may be prescribed a stronger medication if you have a more serious outbreak. Other treatment options include:
- Anti-itch creams
- Draining large, painful blisters
- Immune-suppressant creams and lotions (a less common treatment)
- Dietary changes
If you are dealing with any of these symptoms of eczema then it’s time you visited Foot Health Center in West Orange, NJ to treat your issues and get your foot health back on track.
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