Items filtered by date: November 2021

Tuesday, 30 November 2021 00:00

Stretches to Help Improve Plantar Fasciitis

When the fibrous tissue on the sole that connects the heel with the front of the foot (plantar fascia) becomes damaged and inflamed, this is known as plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis can also cause tense muscles in other parts of the foot and calf. Sometimes stretches can ease some of this tension and discomfort in these muscles as well as the plantar fascia. Simple calf stretches are a good place to start. To get a good stretch in the affected foot, place it behind you—flat on the ground—with the leg and knee straight. The other leg should be bent in front of you with that foot also lying flat, and your hands placed against a wall in front of you. Hold that position for 10 seconds and then release. You should feel an easy stretch in the calf and heel of the affected foot. Rolling a foam roller or ball back and forth under the affected foot while seated can also provide a good stretch in the foot. For another gentle calf stretch, sit on a chair and either curl a towel on the floor or pick up marbles with your toes. If your plantar fasciitis does not improve or is severe, a podiatrist can offer many solutions to treat it.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

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

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
Saturday, 27 November 2021 00:00

Are Bunions Affecting Your Everyday Life?

Have you noticed a bony protrusion on the side of your big toe? If so, you may have developed the foot condition known as a bunion. Don't let bunions interfere with your daily activities.

Tuesday, 23 November 2021 00:00

Why Foot Wounds Are Problematic for Diabetics

Millions of people in America suffer from diabetes, which often leads to complications in their feet. Diabetes impairs the body’s ability to regulate blood glucose levels. This, in turn, disrupts the functionality of white blood cells which are critical in closing wounds. Additionally, diabetes can lead to poor circulation, and this reduces the amount of nutrients sent to wound sites and further impairs the healing process. Neuropathy, or nerve damage, is another condition associated with diabetes. Neuropathy further complicates diabetic wound management because it can prevent diabetic adults from feeling when there is trauma or an injury to their skin, and wounds may progress before they are even discovered. All of these factors combined make the diabetic wound harder to detect and heal, which may lead to infection and worse—if it's not treated properly. If you are diabetic, it's important to be under the care of a podiatrist who can offer preventative measures against foot wounds and treat them promptly and properly if they do develop.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with one of our podiatrists from Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

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

Read more about Wound Care
Tuesday, 16 November 2021 00:00

First Aid for Ankle Sprains

Though it often affects athletes, an ankle sprain can happen to anyone, anytime, and anywhere. Sometimes all it takes to sprain an ankle is to land awkwardly after a jump, or twist your ankle too much as you step off a curb. Symptoms of an ankle sprain include pain in the ankle, particularly when trying to move it or put weight on it, and swelling. If you are feeling these symptoms following an injury, stop what you are doing and rest the affected ankle. Use ice packs wrapped in a towel and elevate your injured ankle to reduce swelling. You can also compress the ankle by wrapping it with an elastic bandage. A sprained ankle needs to heal fully and properly to avoid re-injury. If you have sprained your ankle, it is strongly suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist. 

Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact one of our podiatrists from Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains are the result of a tear in the ligaments within the ankle. These injuries may happen when you make a rapid shifting movement while your foot is planted. A less common way to sprain your ankle is when your ankle rolls inward while your foot turns outward.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Pain at the sight of the tear
  • Bruising/Swelling
  • Ankle area is tender to touch
  • In severe cases, may hear/feel something tear
  • Skin discoloration

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

In many cases, the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevate) is used to treat ankle sprains. However, you should see a podiatrist to see which treatment option would work best with your injury. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

It is important to ask your doctor about rehab options after you receive treatment for your injury. Stretching, strength training, and balance exercises may help the ankle heal while also preventing further injury.

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

Read more about Ankle Sprains
Tuesday, 09 November 2021 00:00

Do I Need Bunion Surgery?

Bunions can form when the main joint at the base of the big toe gets pulled out of line and is turned toward the rest of the toes. This can also cause a bony bump to form at the base of the big toe, which can be very painful. While more conservative treatments are often attempted first, surgery is one option for correcting a bunion. Surgery is intended to restraighten the big toe. During the 30–60-minute surgery, a variety of things may be done to fix the bunion, including releasing tight ligaments, realigning the big toe’s bones, and straightening out the joints of the big toe. Patients who are struggling with pain should consult with a podiatrist to figure out the best form of treatment.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact one of our podiatrists of Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why Do Bunions Form?

Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How Are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

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

Read more about Bunions
Tuesday, 02 November 2021 00:00

Treatments Options for Foot Rashes

If you have a rash on your feet, it is important to know what is causing it prior to beginning treatment. Effective treatments vary depending on the underlying cause. Athlete’s foot, a fungal infection that causes a red, scaly, itchy rash on the feet, is best treated by topical or oral antifungal medications. Allergic reactions, such as irritant contact dermatitis, allergic contact dermatitis, and atopic dermatitis, can be treated with topical corticosteroids and oral antihistamine drugs. Certain medical conditions, such as viral infections, Lyme disease, or psoriasis, can cause a rash to develop on the feet and may require other types of treatments. If you have a rash on your feet, please schedule a visit with a podiatrist who can diagnose the underlying cause and prescribe the right treatment for you. 

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Itasca Foot & Ankle.  Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

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

Read more about Athlete's Foot

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