Posts for category: Foot Care
Is the inner part of your foot experiencing pain? Do you see a bump at the base of your big toe? If so, your foot doctor at Podiatry Associates of Houston may diagnose it as a bunion, an acquired deformity of the metatarsophalangeal joint. Left untreated, bunions worsen, causing limited mobility, especially in older women. Fortunately, the team of podiatrists at Podiatry Associates of Houston is ready to help.
How Bunions Form
Many factors contribute to bunions. One is genetics—foot structure can be inherited, and if your mom has bunions, you may develop them, as well. Other factors include:
- Being female
- Age over 40
- Wearing tight, high-heel shoes (Harvard Health says women develop more bunions than men by a ratio of 10 to 1 because of footwear choice)
- A job which requires prolonged standing
- Sports involving jumping, bouncing and running
Add time and neglect, and the big toe begins to turn toward the second and even third toes of the foot. Podiatrists call this condition Hallux valgus. It causes additional pain and thick callus formation on the ball of the foot. Arthritis and bursitis may set in.
What to Do About a Bunion
Don't ignore the discomfort—see one of the wonderful foot doctors at Podiatry Associates of Houston. They examine bunions on a regular basis, and often treat the issue with care plans that combine conservative interventions, although in severe cases, surgery does become necessary.
Some of these conservative interventions include:
- Over-the-counter analgesics
- Cortisone injections to reduce inflammation
- A change in footwear to low-heels and wide toe boxes
- Rest, and avoiding standing
- Shoe padding, such as moleskin, to reduce friction and formation of calluses and sores
- Gait correction (how you put your feet on the ground when you walk) with custom-made shoe inserts (i.e. orthotics)
- Ice and elevation
- Night-time splints to re-align the toe
Find out More
At Podiatry Associates of Houston, our foot doctors are experts in their field. They will help you manage your bunion so you walk pain-free and stay mobile. For an appointment, call one of our five Houston area offices. For Chimney Rock, TX, phone 713-666-0287. Call our Memorial City location at 713-467-1299. In Katy, contact us at 281-579-0186. Your friends in Willowbrook can be reached at 832-912-7792. In Woodlands, call 281-849-9891.
Are you a sports enthusiast--runner, tennis player or martial arts expert? If you are, you must protect your feet and ankles from sports injuries. At Podiatry Associates of Houston, our team of four podiatrists can show you how to keep your lower extremities healthy, functional and pain-free. Stay in the game with podiatric care from the experts.
Common sports injuries
One-quarter of sports injuries involve the lower extremities--that is, your feet and ankles. Running, jumping, bouncing and twisting make people more prone to:
- Ankle sprains, painful stretching of the ligaments, particularly on the outer aspect of the ankle
- Shin splints, painful tearing and overstretching of the muscles along the tibia
- Achilles tendinitis, stress on or even rupture of the tendon between the heel and calf muscle
- Plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the connective tissue in the arch of the foot
- Stress fractures in the feet
- Tinea pedis, or Athlete's foot
- Metatarsalgia (pain in the ball of the foot)
- Ingrown toenails
- Bunions, acquired deformities, or bumps, at the base of the big toes
At the first sign of discomfort or deformity (such as a noticeable bump, redness or swelling), call your foot doctor at Podiatry Associates of Houston. Sports injuries cannot be ignored as they can progress, limiting not only your athletic activities but your daily function as well.
Protecting yourself from sports injuries
Keeping your feet and ankles healthy and mobile really is a matter of common sense. The team at Podiatry Associates of Houston recommend the following practices to avoid sports injuries:
- Warm-up and stretch before you go for a run, play tennis or engage in your favorite exercise class.
- Keep in good physical condition, including maintaining a healthy weight.
- Wear proper, quality footwear that fits and gives your feet adequate support.
- If you experience pain, stop whatever you are doing. Pain is never normal.
- If you have an acute injury, such as a suspected ankle sprain, rest, apply ice, put on an elastic bandage, and elevate the limb. This first-aid is called the RICE protocol.
- Make sure you have the proper equipment for your sport, keep it in good condition and wear it!
- See your foot doctor about custom-made shoe inserts, or orthotics. Semi-rigid orthotics correct gait imbalances which put undue stress on your feet and ankles, leading to acute or repetitive motion injuries.
Happy, healthy feet
Podiatric health and function definitely impact your mobility and overall well-being. So, be wise when you play sports or exercise, and stay injury-free. If you have questions or concerns about your active feet, please contact Podiatry Associates of Houston for an appointment. We'll be glad to check them out.
We have five Houston area offices to serve you: in Chimney Rock, phone (281) 845-2039. In Memorial City, reach us at (281) 369-4396. For the Katy office, call (281) 694-4224. In Willowbrook, phone (832) 548-9893. For the Woodlands location, call (281) 849-9891.
Have a sports injury? Sports injuries are injuries that occur while you exercise or play sports. The most common sports injuries are fractures, dislocations, sprains and strains, and Achilles tendon injuries. Led by Dr. Jorge Matuk, Dr. David Blumfield, Dr. Douglas Hansen, and Dr. Adi Schroit Akerman, Podiatry Associates of Houston (offices in Houston, TX and The Woodlands, TX) offers a full range of podiatric services. Read on to find out how your podiatrist can help with your sports injuries.
Immobilization- Immobilization can reduce muscle swelling, pain, and muscle spasms. prevent further damage by reducing movement. For example, a cast or splint may be used to immobilize your injured foot, ankle or leg while you heal. Sometimes splints are used immediately following an injury due to inflammation of the affected area. After the inflammation goes down, then a full cast might be applied to the injured limb.
Physical Therapy- Physical therapy is sometimes used to treat sports injuries. Your treatment program may include hands-on therapy, and therapeutic exercises, in which you gradually strengthen the muscles. You may also work into stretching exercises, done on a daily basis. Hands-on therapy or treatments like electrical stimulation and ultrasound can help reduce pain and restore joint and muscle function. Such therapies also prevent pain from returning.
Steroid Injections- Corticosteroid injections, also called steroid injections, are often used to treat sports injuries because they work quickly to reduce swelling and pain. The injections usually comprise a numbing medicine and corticosteroid medication. You can get corticosteroid injections at your podiatrist's office. Corticosteroid injections are only given by healthcare professionals.
Surgical Procedure- Your doctor may recommend surgery for your injury if your symptoms are severe. Most sports injuries do not require corrective treatment, but severe sports injuries such as badly broken bones may require surgical treatment. This may include an operation to fix the bones with wires, screws, plates, or rods. Certain other injuries may also require surgical treatment.
Life always offers you another chance to get yourself back on track. It's called today. Call one of Podiatry Associates of Houston's offices to schedule an appointment- Chimney Rock: 713.666.0287; Memorial City: 713.467.1299; Katy: 281.579.0186; Willowbrook: 832.912.7792; Woodlands: 281.849.9891. We will get you back in the game in no time!
Is heel pain happening to you more often than you would like?
Is heel pain making it impossible to lace up those sneakers and go on your morning run? If so, then you may want to read on to find out what’s going on, how to treat this problem and when it’s time to turn to our Houston podiatrists for medical care.
The two most common causes of heel pain are inflammatory conditions known as plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis. Usually, you can tell which one is causing your symptoms by the location of your pain. For example, if you are experiencing pain in the bottom of your heel then it’s most likely caused by plantar fasciitis. If the pain is located above the heel then it might be Achilles tendonitis.
Other causes of heel pain include:
- Strains and sprains
- Stress fractures
- Heel spurs
- Bursitis (inflammation of the joints)
- Achilles tendon rupture (this is considered a medical emergency)
- Tarsal tunnel syndrome
- Osteomyelitis (an infection of the bone)
- Certain types of arthritis (symptoms will appear gradually over time)
When You Should See a Doctor
If you’ve never experienced heel pain before it’s important that you turn to a foot care specialist in Houston who will be able to properly diagnose the issue and provide you with the best course of action. If plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis is causing your heel pain these two problems will often just go away on their own with proper at-home care and rest.
Of course, it is important that you seek medical attention right away under these circumstances:
- If you are experiencing severe pain or swelling near or around the heel
- If you are unable to bend your foot
- If your heel pain is the result of an injury
- If your pain is accompanied by a fever
- If you also notice numbness or tingling in the affected heel
It’s also a good idea to visit a foot doctor if your heel pain doesn’t seem to get better with at-home care, if it keeps getting worse or if it’s difficult or painful to put weight on the foot.
Don’t let heel pain bench you or affect your daily routine. If heel pain isn’t responding to at-home care then it’s time to turn to our foot and ankle specialists offering comprehensive care to the Chimney Rock, Memorial Park, Katy, Willowbrook and Woodlands, TX, areas. Call Podiatry Associates of Houston today.
What your podiatrists in Houston, Texas want you to know
Bunions can be very painful and having a bunion can limit your ability to walk, stand, and enjoy your life. So, what can you do about a bunion? The podiatrists at Podiatry Associates of Houston want to share the facts about bunions and how to relieve bunion pain. They have four convenient office locations in the Houston area including Chimney Rock, Katy, Memorial City, and Willowbrook, Texas to help heal your feet.
A bunion appears as a large, bony bump on the side of your big toe. Bunions are much more common in women because women often wear shoes that are too narrow, crushing the toes. High heels add to the problem by pushing the toes forward, putting even more pressure on them. The continued friction and pressure of your big toe pushing against the inside of your shoe causes a bunion.
If you are experiencing bunion pain, there are some simple tips you can follow which may provide relief. You can try:
- Switching to wider shoes with more room for your toes
- Taping the bunion to add more support
- Placing pads or inserts inside your shoes
For larger bunions causing significant discomfort, it’s best to visit your podiatrist. Professional treatment for a bunion can get you back on your feet quickly. Some common professional treatments to treat bunion pain, reduce or eliminate bunions include:
- Custom-fit orthotics or footwear to provide support
- Night splints to help realign your foot and toe joint
- Physical therapy and stretching to increase flexibility and mobility
In cases of severe bone deformity, your podiatrist may suggest bunion surgery to realign your toe and foot. Your podiatrist may suggest removing some of the bone and tissue in your toe or fusing your toe joints to surgically straighten your big toe and foot.
Your podiatrist can help you deal with bunion pain and regain your mobility. All it takes to get help is to call the podiatrists at Podiatry Associates of Houston, with offices in Chimney Rock, Katy, Memorial City, and Willowbrook, Texas. Call today!