Posts for: September, 2019
Heel pain isn’t just annoying; it can also keep you from enjoying your day. Heel pain can make it difficult to walk, or even to stand and put weight on your feet. The good news is, there is relief from heel pain. Talk with your podiatrist. The podiatrists at Affiliates in Podiatry offer a full range of footcare services, including treatment for heel pain, to help you and your feet. They have two convenient office locations in Concord and Meredith, NH, to help you.
If you are dealing with heel pain, you may be wondering what is causing your heel pain. There are several different reasons why your heels hurt. You may have:
- A heel bruise, caused from stepping on sharp or hard objects
- A heel spur, caused from excess deposits of calcium on your heel
- Plantar fasciitis, caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is the thick band of tissue running across your heel
Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain. Runners, joggers, and people who practice other foot-stressing sports often suffer from plantar fasciitis. Other causes of plantar fasciitis include overpronating or rolling your feet when you walk, and standing or walking on hard surfaces for extended periods of time.
You may have plantar fasciitis if you experience:
- Acute, stabbing pain on your heel
- Aching, throbbing pain in your arch or on the side of your foot
- Increasing heel pain when you stand or walk
If you are experiencing heel pain, there are some simple therapies you can try at home. Consider:
- Placing ice on your heel several times during the day
- Stretching your arches several times during the day
- Taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory and pain medication
- Resting and taking the weight off of your feet
Stubborn heel pain requires the services of an expert, your podiatrist. At Affiliates in Podiatry common treatments for heel pain include:
- Custom-fit orthotics and footwear to support your feet
- Physical therapy and stretches to increase flexibility
- Prescription-strength anti-inflammatory medication
- Cortisone injections in your heel to reduce inflammation
You can get relief from heel pain, but you need to take action. To find out more about the causes and treatment of heel pain, call the podiatrists at Affiliates in Podiatry, with offices in Concord and Meredith, NH. Call today!
Metatarsalgia denotes a common foot condition characterized by pain and inflammation of the joints and bones of the ball of the foot - the area just before the toes, also called the metatarsal region.
Symptoms of metatarsalgia can develop suddenly, especially after an increase in exercise or high-impact activities, but normally the problems develop over time. Common symptoms of metatarsalgia include:
- Sharp, aching or burning pain in the ball of your foot - the part of the sole just behind the toes
- Pain that intensifies when you stand, walk or run
- Pain that radiates from the balls of the feet into the toes
- Numbness or tingling in the toes
- A feeling in your feet as if you are walking with a pebble in your shoe
- Pain that increases when walking barefoot
Sometimes a single factor can trigger metatarsalgia. More often, multiple factors contribute to the pain, including:
- Over-training or Over-activity. Extensive training and high-impact sports, especially running, places an abnormal amount of stress on the balls of the feet, causing irritation, inflammation and pain.
- Other foot disorders. High arches, hammertoes, bunions, stress fractures and Morton's neuroma can all trigger metatarsalgia symptoms.
- Poor-fitting footwear. High heels, narrow-toed shoes and shoes without adequate padding can all contribute to metatarsal problems.
- Excess weight. Extra weight places excess pressure on your metatarsals.
- Aging. The fat pads on the metatarsals thin out as a person ages, diminishing the ability of the metatarsal bones to protect themselves.
Although generally not serious, metatarsalgia can disrupt your day to day activities, and when left untreated can lead to additional pain in your unaffected foot, back or hips. Treatment to eliminate metatarsalgia symptoms can be as simple as resting, icing the affected area and wearing proper-fitting shoes to significantly reduce swelling and ease pain.
When conservative treatments aren't effective and pain persists, visit our practice for a full exam and a proper diagnosis. In most cases, metatarsalgia can be treated non-surgically. An experienced podiatrist may prescribe specially-designed orthotics or shock-absorbing insoles and arch supports to prevent and minimize future problems with metatarsalgia.
The feet have more sweat glands than any other part of the body, which means they have the ability to sweat profusely. With your feet encased in your shoes all day and the sweat unable to evaporate, bacteria will begin to grow rapidly. Bacteria then begins to break down the sweat, generating an unpleasant odor. Other factors can contribute to increased perspiration, including anxiety, hormonal changes, medications and various skin conditions.
Foot odor is a common problem, especially among those who perspire excessively, but it can be both embarrassing and physically uncomfortable. If you suffer from foot odor, rest assured that simple lifestyle changes and improved personal hygiene can help reduce and eliminate the smell.
Easy Ways to Eliminate Foot Odor
Since most foot odor is caused from excess sweat and the growth of odor-causing bacteria, it's relatively easy to control and reduce foot odor on your own. Start by taking the following preventative steps:
- Keep your feet clean by washing them with an antibacterial soap on a regular basis to minimize bacteria.
- Keep feet dry as moisture enables the growth of bacteria.
- Alternate shoes and avoid wearing the same pair for multiple days in a row.
- Choose open shoes such as sandals when possible, allowing air onto the feet which evaporates sweat and slows the growth of bacteria.
- Wear cotton socks which wick away moisture and absorb perspiration.
- Apply foot sprays and powders to the feet. Ask your podiatrist for recommended products.
- Disinfect, wash and discard foul smelling shoes as necessary.
The causes of foot odor are typically not harmful to your health, but do create an environment for the growth of fungus and bacteria. It's not unusual for infections such as toenail fungus and athlete's foot to develop as a result.
When improving your foot hygiene doesn't help reduce the smell, you may need to visit your podiatrist, as persistent foot odor can indicate an infection or a severe case of hereditary sweating. In these cases, a prescription ointment may be required to treat the problem. Visit our office, and we'll work with you to determine the cause and most effective treatment for your condition!