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Tuesday, 16 July 2024 00:00

Possible Causes of Foot Pain

Foot pain is a common issue that can arise from various causes, impacting daily activities and overall quality of life. The most common causes include plantar fasciitis, which involves inflammation of the tissue running along the bottom of the foot, and arthritis, which affects the joints. Other frequent sources of foot pain are bunions, caused by misalignment of the big toe joint, and hammertoes, where toes bend abnormally. Injuries such as fractures, sprains, and strains also contribute to foot pain, often resulting from accidents or overuse. Additionally, deformities like flat feet or high arches can lead to discomfort by altering the natural distribution of weight across the foot. Conditions such as tendinitis and neuropathy, particularly in individuals with diabetes, can further contribute to foot pain. Treatment varies depending on the cause but typically includes rest, anti-inflammatory medications, and wearing proper footwear. Stretching exercises and orthotic devices can also help alleviate pain. For persistent or severe foot pain, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for a comprehensive diagnosis and tailored treatment plan.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Dr. Kendall Blackwell from InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Causes

Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Bunions
  • Hammertoes
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Bone Spurs
  • Corns
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ingrown Toenails
  • Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
  • Flat Feet
  • Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
  • And more

Diagnosis

To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Foot Pain
Tuesday, 09 July 2024 00:00

Reasons for Wearing Heel Cups

Heel cups are invaluable for individuals who spend long hours on their feet, providing essential support and cushioning to alleviate heel pain. These shoe inserts are particularly beneficial for those suffering from conditions like plantar fasciitis, which can be aggravated by insufficient support and poor shock absorption. Heel cups cushion the entire heel, from the point of impact with the ground to the edges and back, distributing the shock more evenly to reduce pressure on any single area. This helps make walking, running, and standing much more comfortable. Additionally, the gentle compression from heel cups can help reduce swelling in the heel and ankle. Professions such as nursing, retail, and culinary arts often involve prolonged standing. By using heel cups, people working in these fields can enhance their comfort and reduce heel pain. Consulting with a podiatrist can help in selecting the right heel cups and ensuring they are correctly fitted. If you experience heel pain, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist for an exam and treatment.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell of InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain

Rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, is an autoimmune disorder where the immune system mistakenly attacks the joints, causing inflammation, pain, and swelling. This condition can significantly affect the feet, leading to discomfort and mobility issues. RA occurs due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors, and it is more common in women and those with a family history of the disease. Symptoms in the feet include persistent pain, swelling, stiffness, and deformities such as bunions and hammertoes. Early diagnosis is important and typically involves physical examinations, imaging tests, and blood tests to identify specific markers. Management of RA in the feet includes medications like anti-inflammatory drugs and disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs to control symptoms and prevent joint damage. Preventive measures involve maintaining a healthy weight, regular exercise, and wearing supportive footwear. In severe cases, surgical interventions may be necessary. If you have symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis in your feet, it is suggested that you schedule regular visits with a podiatrist to monitor and manage your foot health.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell from InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Care for Your Arthritic Foot
Sunday, 30 June 2024 00:00

Reminder: When Was the Last Time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

Tuesday, 25 June 2024 00:00

Best Exercises for Flat Feet

Flat feet can cause discomfort and impact overall mobility, and specific exercises can help strengthen the arches and alleviate symptoms. Towel scrunches are effective, and can be done by simply placing a towel on the floor, using your toes to scrunch it toward you, then release. Toe extensions involve sitting with your feet flat and lifting only your toes while keeping the rest of your foot on the ground. The stork stretch, where you balance on one foot while pulling the other foot towards your buttocks, helps improve balance and strengthen the foot muscles. Using a foot roller, back and forth under your arch, massages and stretch the muscles. These exercises, when practiced regularly, can enhance arch strength, reduce pain, and improve the overall function of flat feet. Flat feet can cause discomfort while standing or walking. If you have flat feet, it is suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can perform a comprehensive foot exam and offer relief solutions, if needed.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell from InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flat Feet
Tuesday, 18 June 2024 00:00

Ankle Pain Can Interfere With Walking

Ankle pain while walking is a common issue that can arise from various conditions and injuries. This can be difficult just with regular movement, but particularly frustrating when you count walking as an important form of exercise in your life. The ankle is a complex joint connecting the foot to the leg, consisting of bones, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. Pain can result from sprains, strains, fractures, or conditions such as arthritis, tendinitis, and bursitis. Overuse, wearing improper footwear, and sudden changes in physical activity can also contribute to ankle pain. This pain can interfere with walking by causing discomfort, instability, and limited range of motion. Ankle pain may present as a sharp, stabbing sensation or a dull ache, often worsening with weight-bearing activities. Swelling, bruising, and stiffness are common symptoms accompanying the pain. To alleviate ankle pain, rest, compression, and elevation are effective initial treatments. Pain relievers and wearing supportive footwear can also help. Preventative measures include strengthening and stretching exercises, wearing appropriate shoes, and gradually increasing activity levels. If you have persistent or severe ankle pain, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan so you can walk comfortably again. 

Ankle and foot injuries are common among athletes and in many sports. They can be caused by several problems and may be potentially serious. If you are feeling pain or think you were injured in a sporting event or when exercising, consult with Dr. Kendall Blackwell from InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Common Injuries

The most common injuries that occur in sporting activities include:

  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains
  • Broken Foot
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Stress Fractures
  • Turf Toe

Symptoms

Symptoms vary depending upon the injury and in some cases, there may be no symptoms at all. However, in most cases, some form of symptom is experienced. Pain, aching, burning, bruising, tenderness, tightness or stiffness, sensation loss, difficulty moving, and swelling are the most common symptoms.

Treatment

Just as symptoms vary depending upon the injury, so do treatment options. A common treatment method is known as the RICE method. This method involves rest, applying ice, compression and elevating the afflicted foot or ankle. If the injury appears to be more serious, surgery might be required, such as arthroscopic or reconstructive surgery. Lastly, rehabilitation or therapy might be needed to gain full functionality in the afflicted area. Any discomfort experienced by an athlete must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Sports Related Foot And Ankle Injuries

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition caused by damage to the peripheral nerves, often resulting in numbness, tingling, burning sensations, and pain in the extremities. There are several types of peripheral neuropathy, each with its own set of causes and symptoms. Regardless of the underlying cause, peripheral neuropathy can have a significant impact on the feet, leading to decreased sensation, balance issues, and an increased risk of foot injuries and ulcers. Diabetic neuropathy is one of the most common types and is caused by nerve damage from prolonged exposure to high blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Other types include compressive neuropathy, which occurs when nerves are compressed or pinched, and toxic neuropathy, which can result from exposure to certain medications, chemicals, or toxins. Proper foot care, including regular inspections, supportive footwear, and maintaining good blood sugar levels for diabetes, is essential for managing symptoms and preventing complications associated with peripheral neuropathy. If your feet are affected with any of the above symptoms, it is strongly suggested that you meet with a podiatrist who can offer you effective methods to manage the type of neuropathy you have.

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 Dr. Kendall Blackwell from InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor 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 our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Neuropathy
Tuesday, 04 June 2024 00:00

Causes of Swelling in the Legs and Feet

Edema in the legs and feet is a common condition characterized by swelling. The swelling is caused by excess fluid trapped in bodily tissues. Many factors can contribute to such swelling, like standing or sitting for long periods, which hinders proper blood flow. It also may stem from serious underlying health issues, including heart disease, kidney problems, or liver disease. Other contributing factors to edema include pregnancy, obesity, and certain medications that may cause fluid retention. Symptoms of edema include swollen, puffy skin that may feel tight. When the skin is pressed, it may also produce a dimple. There are many treatment options for edema, and a podiatrist, or foot doctor, is a specialist that can provide a personalized treatment plan. If you are affected by swollen feet and legs, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist today for proper care. 

Swollen feet can be a sign of an underlying condition. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell of InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Swollen feet are a common ailment among pregnant women and people who stand or sit for extended periods. Aging may increase the possibility of swollen feet and patients who are obese often notice when their feet are swelling too. There may be medical reasons why swollen feet occur:

  • Phlebitis - A condition that causes the veins to become inflamed and can also cause leg pain.
  • Liver disease - This may lead to low blood levels of albumin which is a protein. This can cause fluid in the blood to pass into the tissues and several areas of the body can become swollen.
  • Heart failure - When the heart doesn’t pump properly the blood that is normally pumped back to the heart can pool in the veins of the legs causing swollen feet.
  • Kidney disease - One of the main functions of the kidneys is releasing excess fluid in the body. This type of condition can make it difficult for the kidneys to function properly, and as a result the feet may become swollen.
  • Deep-vein thrombosis (DVT)- This is a serious condition where blood clots form in the veins of the legs. They can block the return of blood from the legs to the heart which may cause the feet to swell. It is important to be treated by a podiatrist if this condition is present.

Swollen feet can also be caused by bone and tendon conditions, including fractures, arthritis, and tendinitis. Additionally, there may be skin and toenail conditions and an infection may cause the feet to swell. Patients who take medicine to treat high blood pressure may be prone to getting swollen feet. 

Many patients elevate their feet to help relieve the swelling and this is generally a temporary remedy. When a podiatrist is consulted the reason behind the swelling can be uncovered and subsequently treated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.


 

Read more about Swelling of the Feet

Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Children's feet undergo remarkable changes and developments as they progress through various stages of infancy and early childhood. In the pre-crawling stage, babies' feet are flexible and mostly fat pads, allowing them to kick and wiggle freely. As they transition to crawling, their feet adapt to bearing weight, developing arches and strengthening muscles necessary for mobility. Throughout the toddler years, a child's feet continue to evolve, with walking and running becoming primary modes of transportation. During this stage, proper footwear becomes vital to support their growing feet and provide stability. By the time children enter kindergarten and beyond, their feet have typically developed arches, and they exhibit more refined coordination and balance. As they engage in more physical activities and sports, maintaining foot health through wearing well-fitted shoes, regular exercise, and proper hygiene becomes essential. If you have any questions about the development of your child’s feet or what type of shoes to purchase, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist who can address them.

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell of InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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