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January 2020

Monday, 27 January 2020 00:00

Caring for Your Diabetic Neuropathy

It’s very common for those with diabetes to experience nerve damage. This may cause what is known as diabetic neuropathy, which often affects the feet. With this condition, it can be very difficult to feel if you have developed a wound. If these small injuries are not felt, it’s likely they will go untreated, which can be incredibly dangerous as that may lead to an infection, or further foot complications. To best care for your neuropathy, it’s suggested that you keep your blood sugar at a healthy level, check your feet daily, and refrain from walking barefoot. It is also advised that you wear protective footwear as an extra support for your feet. If you begin to notice symptoms such as a burning or tingling feeling in your feet, we recommend that you consult with a podiatrist as soon as possible for an advised treatment plan.

Neuropathy

Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What Is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Neuropathy
Monday, 20 January 2020 00:00

Protective Boots and Stress Fractures

The bones in your foot which connect the ankle to the toes are referred to as the metatarsal bones. These bones can be affected if a stress fracture occurs. Stress fractures can be a common injury among people who frequently run or participate in jumping activities. Additionally, patients who have medical conditions that include osteoporosis or arthritis may be prone to developing this condition. It is considered to be a hairline fracture, and can cause considerable pain and discomfort. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which typically consists of having a bone scan or an MRI taken, treatment can begin. This may involve wearing a protective boot as the healing process takes place. Mild relief may be found when the affected foot is elevated, as this may help to reduce existing swelling. If you have a stress fracture, it is strongly recommended that you consult with a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle
Monday, 13 January 2020 00:00

Treating Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails can be both uncomfortable and painful if left untreated. One of the most common causes of their development is hereditary or genetic factors. The curvature of your toenails are passed down to you, so if you have family members that are prone to getting ingrown toenails, it is likely you may run the same risk. Cutting your toenails too short is another cause of getting an ingrown toenail. If they are cut too short, the skin around the toe will adapt, forming an ingrown toenail. It is also advised you do not cut your toenails on an angle, rather trim them straight across. If you are experiencing pain, a podiatrist may suggest a splint to help stop the nail from growing any further into your skin. In more severe cases, a podiatrist may suggest surgery and full removal of the toenail. To help ease the pain, it’s recommended that you soak your feet in epsom salt, as this will also help to get rid of any bacteria under the toenails. For professional care we recommend you consult with a podiatrist who can advise you on the best course of treatment for your case.

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 Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. 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 Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Ingrown Toenails
Sunday, 12 January 2020 00:00

Wounds that Don't Heal Need to be Checked

Your feet are covered a good part of the day. If you are diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often another sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

The feet are the foundation of the body, so it’s important to make sure your child’s feet are healthy and well cared for to prepare them for supporting the body as they age. One way of helping your child’s feet gain strength is to allow for proper movement. As they begin to kick and crawl, they are working the muscles in their feet, so supporting this motion will only help them to become stronger. To allow for proper movement, it is also recommended to avoid dressing your child in tightly fitted booties, that way their feet and toes may develop naturally and move freely. Since babies grow quickly, it’s important that you update their footwear to avoid tightly fitted shoes or socks that may cause poor circulation. Washing and thoroughly drying their feet will also help to maintain proper hygiene. For more tips on how to keep your child’s feet healthy, we recommend you consult with a podiatrist for professional care and advice.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact one of our podiatrists of Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
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