If you’ve ever wondered exactly what a podiatrist does, this is the blog for you! We’re taking this week to discuss the basics of podiatry and answer questions you might have, starting with the most basic:
What is a podiatrist?
A doctor who diagnoses and treats conditions primarily of the feet and ankles. The letters DPM mean your doctor has gone through years of training, learning all about the functions and structures of the feet and ankles.
What are a podiatrist’s qualifications?
Podiatrists go through training similar to other doctors. They have completed four years of education in a podiatric medical school and three additional years of hospital residency. Many podiatrists have additional training to specialize in things such as sports medicine, podiatric surgery, wound care, pediatrics, diabetic care, and more. These highly trained specialists are the most qualified health care professionals to care for your feet and ankles!
When and why should I visit a podiatrist?
If you’ve noticed pain in your feet and ankles, or if you have had sudden changes in the look or feel of those areas, you should make an appointment with a podiatrist. If you have a chronic medical condition that affects the feet such as diabetes or high blood pressure, it’s also important to see a podiatrist for regular foot checkups.
What things do podiatrists treat?
Podiatrists like our team here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers treat a myriad of issues. They can diagnose and treat issues such as:
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Fungal Nails
- Athlete’s Foot
- Ingrown Toenails
- Diabetic Foot Issues
- Sports Injuries
- And SO MUCH more
What if I need surgery?
Podiatrists can also usually perform surgery on bones, ligaments, tendons, and joints of your feet and ankles. If conservative treatments don’t do the trick for things like bunions, neuromas, hammertoes, or other issues, surgery might be the next option.
Did this answer your podiatric ponderings? If you’ve got more questions or if you’re suffering from a foot or ankle issue, call us today! Our team of foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers provide the best in foot care and utilize the newest diagnostic and treatment techniques and technologies! Our friendly and knowledgeable staff has unparalleled experience and can help you at any of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices. Request an appointment today!
An issue we see here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers all the time is ingrown toenails. Unfortunately, a lot of the times a patient has taken it upon themselves to treat the issue with a home remedy that they read on the internet or that their mom’s aunt’s best friend’s sister’s pet parakeet told them.
Before you attempt to treat an ingrown toenail at home, make sure you’re not using one of these methods!
- Myth #1: Cutting a notch in the side of your nail’s border will stop the nail from growing inward.
- Myth #2: Shoving a piece of cotton between the nail and the bed will prevent it from growing any longer.
- Myth #3:Just keep trimming! If you keep trimming down the sides of the nail, it will eventually even out.
And now for the truth:
The number one treatment is prevention. The best way to prevent your nails from becoming ingrown is to trim them properly. Properly trimming means straight across, and not too short, and not rounding off the edges. Prevention also includes making sure your shoes fit properly. If your toe box is too tight, it will compress your toes which can cause a painful ingrown toenail.
If you do have an ingrown toenail however, you can try soaking the affected toe in warm water several times a day and try to gently massage the nail out of the skin. If you notice redness, pus or discharge, swelling, or heat in the area, this means it is infected and it is time call your podiatrist!
Why it’s important:
First of all, ingrown toenails hurt! Second of all, they can easily become infected if left untreated. If you are a diabetic patient or if you have a medical condition that suppresses your immune system, an infection in your feet can be devastating.
If you’re suffering from an ingrown toenail, call us today! Our team of foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers provide the best in foot care and utilize the newest diagnostic and treatment techniques and technologies! Our friendly and knowledgeable staff has unparalleled experience and can help you at any of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices. Request an appointment today!
Jogging is a great way to stay active and keep your heart and body healthy. Unfortunately, it can also come with a host of potential issues for your feet. If you’re thinking about getting into jogging, make sure you take your time to get started. Jumping right into any new sport or activity, although tempting, can be dangerous to your feet and ankles. We’ve put together three prep exercises before you even hit the pavement, that can help prepare your body.
Three activities to prepare your body for jogging:
Stretch your legs well by sitting upright in a chair with another chair next to you. Put your foot onto that other chair and flatten your leg, lowering your knee towards the floor. Hold this position for 10 seconds. Then relax and repeat. This might seem easy, but it helps prepare your legs – especially the extra vulnerable knees – for jogging.
Using a soft surface such as a yoga mat, lay down on your side. Flatten out your leg that is closest to the floor and slowly raise your other leg into the air. Hold that pose for 10 seconds. Repeat this exercise 10 times, then alternate sides. This exercise is great to increase flexibility in your legs!
Find a small ledge with handrails, like a short set of stairs. Stand in front of the stair and hold on to the handrail. Next, place on foot up onto the ledge or stair and slowly press your body upwards. Repeat this exercise 10 times, then switch feet.
If you ease your body into sports and activities like jogging, you’re bound to have a more productive and successful experience. If you’re starting a new sport and want to make sure your feet and ankles are as healthy as can be, call us today. Our team of foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers provide the best in foot care and utilize the newest diagnostic and treatment techniques and technologies! Our friendly and knowledgeable staff has unparalleled experience and can help you at any of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices. Request an appointment today!
Your body is connected in so many ways, from the bones that make up our skeleton, to the muscles that help move that skeleton, to the 100 billion nerve cells that carry those movement messages from our brain to parts of our body. Of those 100 billion nerves, about 200,000 are in each foot. That’s a lot of nerve endings! Unfortunately, that also means a lot of things that could potentially go haywire and cause medical issues.
Here are a few nerve-related issues that occur in our feet that we treat here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers:
- Acrocyanosis– Typically this benign condition produces swelling, color change, excessive sweating, or excessive coldness in feet. It can also be an indicator of a serious medical illness elsewhere in the body, so get it checked out ASAP if you have those symptoms.
- Alcoholic Neuropathy– This nerve-loss condition is caused by ethanol, the toxic agent in alcohol. Ethanol does damage to nerve tissue, which can cause loss of sensation in the feet. Treatment often includes B-12 injections, oral medication, ointments, or magnetic therapy.
- Chilblains– Chilblains are caused by a poor reaction to cold. Circulation can contribute to chilblains. It often causes itchiness, pain, cracked skin, and redness. If you have poor circulation, keep your feet warm to prevent chilblains.
- Ischemic foot– This is a lack of arterial blood flowing from the heart to the foot. It could be caused by arterial blockage from cholesterol, arterial spasms, or arterial injury. Lack of oxygen and nutrients cause this issue.
- Neuroma– If you experience numbness, tingling, burning or pain in the ball of your feet, it’s possibly a neuroma. This enlarged, benign growth of nerves can be treated with custom orthotics and/or cortisone injections. In severe cases, surgery is necessary.
- Spasms– There are a lot of things that could cause spasms in your feet including vitamin deficiencies, hyperventilation, hypocalcemia, muscle cramps, or serious neuromuscular conditions like Parkinson’s.
- Venous stasis– Loss of leg vein function is called venous stasis. Your normal blood flow is altered or ceased, which can lead to blood clots. Swelling and varicose veins are common with this condition.
There are a lot of potential things that can go wrong with the nerves in your feet. One thing that all of these issues have in common is that you need to see your podiatrist if you are dealing with any of them!
If you notice any changes in your feet, call us today. Our team of foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers is highly trained. We provide the best in foot care and utilize the newest diagnostic and treatment techniques and technologies. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff has unparalleled experience and can help you at any of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices. Request an appointment today!
You’ve probably heard the phrase “blue in the face” associated with a repetitive activity happening for a seemingly endless amount of time. But have you ever heard of being “blue in the feet?” Yikes! That’s probably a pretty disconcerting sight to behold.
Persistent blue discoloration of the extremities is called acrocyanosis. It typically presents in the hands and fingers, but also occurs in the feet and sometimes in parts of the face. Luckily, acrocyanosis is typically benign, but it can also be a sign of a more serious medical condition in the body.
Blue feet can be a sign of:
- A serious infection
- Toxicities in the blood
- Certain blood clotting syndromes
- Connective tissue disorders
- Abnormal blood protein levels
- A Tumor in the respiratory tract
What are signs of acrocyanosis?
The most obvious sign of acrocyanosis is skin discoloration, especially of the hands, feet, and face. Other signs include:
- Extremities are often cold and clammy
- In warm weather extremities may exhibit swelling
- Profuse sweating from soles of feet and palms of hands
- Cold temperature exacerbates discoloration
There is typically no pain associated with acrocyanosis unless there is another underlying issue at play causing it.
How is it treated?
Treatment depends on what is causing acrocyanosis. Often, the disorder itself cannot be remedied, but treatment ensures it doesn’t worsen over time. Treatment typically focuses on keeping blood circulating normally and warming up the feet and other extremities. Special insulated boots and/or thick moisture-wicking liner socks can help maintain normal body temperature and lessen the discoloration.
If you notice discoloration of your extremities, it should always be checked out by a medical professional. If you have noticed discoloration or any changes at all in your feet or ankles, we’re here to help! Our team of foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers are highly trained. We provide the best in foot care and utilize the newest diagnostic and treatment techniques and technologies! Our friendly and knowledgeable staff has unparalleled experience and can help you at any of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices. Request an appointment today!
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