Here are some possible reasons why you may be dealing with foot and ankle swelling,
It’s normal for there to be a little bit of swelling in the ankles and feet due to extra fluid and pressure placed on the body from the developing uterus. This is more common for women in their third trimester, especially the weeks leading up to delivery, or during hotter months. However, it’s important to keep an eye on your swelling to make sure it’s not severe or appearing suddenly. If you notice significant swelling of the feet and ankles along with stomach pain, nausea, vomiting or headaches, call your doctor right away, as this could be a sign of high blood pressure (known as preeclampsia).
You have a foot or ankle injury
This is a common reason why people often turn to a podiatrist. Everything from strains to sprained ankles and fractured bones in the foot can lead to sudden swelling after an injury. It’s a good idea to ice the injury to help reduce swelling. If your swelling is accompanied by severe pain or trouble walking on the foot then you should see a podiatrist immediately.
You could have a blood clot
A blood clot in the leg, often known as deep vein thrombosis, can stop blood from flowing through the legs back to the heart. As a result of the blockage, this can lead to swelling in the ankles and the affected leg. Since a blood clot can be particularly dangerous it is important that you seek immediate medical attention if your swelling is accompanied by leg pain, fever, and any color changes in your leg.
You may have heart or kidney disease
It is possible that swelling in your feet or ankles could be warning us of problems with your kidneys, liver, or heart. If you find that your ankles start to swell at night, your body could be retaining both salt and water (a possible sign of heart failure). When kidneys don’t function properly excess fluid can accumulate within the body and lead to swelling. If you notice swelling along with weight gain, loss of appetite, and fatigue then you should talk with your doctor.
These are only some of the reasons why you may be dealing with foot and ankle swelling. Other causes could be,
- Consuming too much salt
- Sitting or standing for too long
- Side effects from certain medications
- An infection (more common in those with diabetic neuropathy)
- Weak or damaged veins in the legs
Ingrown toenails can cause extensive discomfort and pain. Without treatment, an infection can develop and lead to further problems. Fortunately, several methods are available for treating ingrown toenails, many of which can be performed at home. The skilled podiatry team at Affiliates in Podiatry in Concord and Meredith NH can recommend specific ingrown toenail treatments that you can do at home.
Causes of Ingrown Toenails
An ingrown toenail occurs when the nail grows too close to the skin and presses against it. The pressure of the toenail squeezing against the skin can cause swelling, redness, and discomfort. It is more common for ingrown toenails to develop on the big toes rather than the smaller ones. Some common causes of ingrown toenails include:
- Curving or angling the nails rather than trimming them straight across
- Trimming the toenails too short or too close to the skin
- Wearing shoes or socks that are too tight
- A fungal infection on the toes or feet
- An injury to the toes or feet
There are several ways to treat Concord ingrown toenails at home. Some steps you can take to ease the discomfort of an ingrown toenail, prevent an infection from developing, or treat the ingrown nail include:
- Taking over-the-counter pain relievers for pain or discomfort
- Applying anti-fungal or antibiotic ointment to prevent infection
- Soaking the feet in warm water several times a day to soften the nail so it can be trimmed away from the skin
- Massaging the toenail while soaking in water to reduce inflammation
- Placing cotton or waxed dental floss beneath the ingrown nail after soaking to help the nail grow above the skin
- Wearing sandals or loose-fitting socks and shoes until the nail heals
At-home treatments can provide relief from the pain and discomfort of an ingrown toenail. However, if pain and inflammation persist even after implementing at-home remedies, see one of the skilled podiatrists at our office in Concord and Meredith NH. Various treatments for ingrown toenails can be discussed.
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
There are some steps you can take to prevent ingrown toenails from developing. One of the best ways to prevent them is to trim the nails straight across. Giving toenails a rounded edge when trimming can cause them to grow too close to the skin on the sides of the toes. It is also best not to trim nails too short. When they are cut too close to the skin at the tops of the toes, the nails are more likely to grow back too close.
Wearing socks and shoes that fit properly and are not too tight is another easy way to prevent ingrown nails. Narrow or tight-fitting footwear can put pressure on the toes and cause the nails to become ingrown. Finally, since fungal infections can cause ingrown nails to develop, keeping the toes and feet clean and dry can prevent Concord ingrown toenails by reducing the risk of infection.
At-home treatments are quite effective in providing relief from the inflammation, pain, and discomfort associated with ingrown toenails. Professional treatments are also available when at-home remedies have not fully resolved the problem. For help treating and preventing ingrown toenails, call Affiliates in Podiatry in Concord NH at (603) 225-5281. Appointments are also available at our office in Meredith NH by calling (603) 279-0330.
Wear Appropriate Footwear
Consider Shoe Inserts
Apply Protective Padding
Practice Pain Management
Do I need surgery for a hammertoe?
If you are dealing with hammertoes or other foot problems, you must have a podiatrist that you can turn to for regular and immediate care.
- Take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication to help with pain and swelling
- Ice the bunion for 15-20 minutes at a time, several times a day to also alleviate pain and swelling (conversely, you may choose to soak your bunion in warm water to ease symptoms)
- Consider getting prescription orthotics (shoe inserts) to place within your shoes to take the pressure off the deformed joint and to reduce pain with walking or standing
- Wear a night splint, which will straighten out the big toe while you sleep to reduce morning pain and stiffness
- Only wear shoes that have a wide toe box that doesn’t put pressure on the bunion. Avoid high heels and shoes with pointed toes.
- Perform stretching exercises every day to alleviate stiffness and to improve mobility and range of motion within the feet
- Apply a non-medicated pad over the bunion before putting on shoes to prevent friction and the formation of a callus
Should I consider bunion surgery?
Worried that you might be dealing with a bunion? Experiencing regular bunion pain? If so, a foot and ankle professional can assess the problem and provide you with a customized treatment plan to help you get your bunion pain under control.
- Ingrown toenails
- Chronic heel pain
- A broken foot or ankle
- Numbness, tingling or loss of sensation in the feet
- Severe pain
- Difficulty bearing weight on a foot or ankle
- A visible foot deformity
- Signs of infection (e.g. redness; swelling; fever)
- An ulcer or open wound
This website includes materials that are protected by copyright, or other proprietary rights. Transmission or reproduction of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use, as defined in the copyright laws, requires the written permission of the copyright owners.