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September 2021

Tuesday, 28 September 2021 00:00

Obtaining the Best Results From Calf Stretches

The calf muscles are located at the back of the lower leg and are responsible for the way our feet and ankles move. Tight calf muscles can affect the position of the foot, impacting motion and balance. Regularly stretching the calf muscles helps reduce lower limb pain, tightness, and instability. To get the best results from calf stretches, it is important to hold the stretch for at least 30 seconds. This gives the muscles enough time to stretch out. You should also repeat each calf stretch three times for maximum benefits. Calf stretches can be uncomfortable, but should not be painful. Stop stretching if the mild discomfort associated with stretching turns into pain. Finally, stay safe by consulting with your podiatrist prior to beginning any new stretching or exercise regimen. 

Why Stretching Is Important for Your Feet

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first to determine if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous exercise, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

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

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Tuesday, 21 September 2021 00:00

Why Are My Toenails Thick?

Thickened toenails are typically a sign of a fungal toenail infection, which can cause changes in the texture and color of the toenail. An infected toenail can often thicken, become brittle or crumbly, and develop white, yellow, or brown discoloration. But while fungal infections are the most common cause of thickened toenails, they are not the only cause. Psoriasis, a skin condition, can also affect the toenails, making them thicker, pitted, and discolored. Paronychia, a nail disease caused by a bacterial infection, can thicken the toenail, make it discolored, and cause redness, pain, and inflammation around the nail. Diabetes can cause toenails to thicken because not enough nutrients are reaching the toenails to maintain their health. Other reasons your toenails may be thickened include onychogryphosis (Ram’s Horn), aging, a toenail injury, or a rare condition called yellow nail syndrome. If you notice changes in the thickness, color, or shape of your toenails, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist. 

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe of Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

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

 

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Published in Blog
Friday, 17 September 2021 00:00

It's Time for Beautiful Feet

You don't need an excuse to have beautiful nails. Step outside without worrying about the appearance of your feet.

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 14 September 2021 00:00

Charcot Marie Tooth Disease and the Feet

Charcot Marie Tooth (CMT) disease is a neurological condition characterized by a weakness and loss of sensation in the legs, hands, and feet due to nerve damage. This condition is genetic, affecting approximately 1 in every 2500 people. CMT develops gradually over time and progressively worsens. While there is no cure, a podiatrist can help you manage the symptoms of CMT in your feet. People with this condition may experience a change in the structure of their feet, developing high arches and hammertoes. Pain, muscle weakness, altered sensation, and muscle cramps are also common. Your podiatrist may recommend a treatment program consisting of foot strengthening and stretching exercises, orthotics, pain medication, and possibly surgery to reduce symptoms and maintain your mobility and quality of life. If you suffer from CMT disease, seeing a podiatrist can help. 

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. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . 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 Rome, GA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 07 September 2021 00:00

What Are Common Causes of Plantar Fasciitis?

The plantar fascia is a tendon located on the bottom of the foot. It is known for being strong and inflexible, and supports the arch of the foot. This tendon connects the heel to the toes, and a healthy plantar fascia plays a significant role in completing daily activities without pain. An imbalance in the style of walking can alter the foot mechanics, and the plantar fascia may become damaged. This can lead to inflammation of this tendon, which in turn may become plantar fasciitis. Some of the causes that are associated with this ailment can include obesity, and standing on hard surfaces for the majority of the day. Additionally, a sudden increase in speed and intensity during running may lead to gradual development of plantar fasciitis. This condition can cause severe pain and discomfort, and it is suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can properly diagnose and treat plantar fasciitis.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

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

 

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