Posts for category: Foot Care
Bunions can be painful and debilitating, making your shoes uncomfortable and sometimes making it difficult to walk. If you suffer from bunions, you should seek medical advice from a podiatrist. Dr. Michael Mitry and Dr. Christopher Karter are board-certified podiatrists at Advanced Podiatry of Needham in Needham, MA. They provide diagnosis and treatment of all aspects of podiatry as well as foot and ankle surgery.
What Are Bunions?
A bunion is a hard swelling that forms on the lower joint of the big toe, causing the appendage to press against its neighbor. Bunions can be caused by ill-fitting shoes, arthritis, and stress on the feet. Signs and symptoms of bunions include:
- An inflamed lump at the base of one or both big toes
- Difficulty moving the affected toe
- Swelling and redness around the lower joint of the affected toe
- Pain that comes and goes or persistent pain
- Callouses or corns where the big toe rubs against the next toe
How to Avoid Bunions
Bunions can be avoided if you take care of your feet throughout your life. Bunions develop slowly so it’s a good idea to pay attention to the shape of your feet, so that you can spot the early signs of bunions and talk to a podiatrist.
To prevent bunions, avoid high heels or shoes with narrow, pointed toes. Always wear shoes that are comfortable and don’t put pressure on your feet. Also, performing simple exercises, such as picking up a small object with your toes, can help to strengthen them.
If you suffer from bunions or any other foot condition and you live in the Needham area, call Dr. Mitry or Dr. Karter at (781) 444-4044 to make an appointment.
Bunions may feel like a sore bump on the side of your foot makes standing and walking a chore. At Advanced Podiatry of Needham, your foot doctors, Dr. Michael Mitry and Dr. Christopher Karter, will take care of that bunion, improving your foot function, appearance, and comfort.
Just what is a bunion?
Hallux valgus is an acquired foot deformity involving the metatarsophalangeal joint at the base of the big toe. While women and people who carry too much body weight typically develop bunions, most anyone can--even adolescents, reports the American Academy of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. Much depends on heredity and on the type of shoes people wear. Narrow, high-heeled shoes exert a lot of pressure on that joint, forcing the big toe toward the second and even the third toe.
Symptoms associated with bunions
Symptoms vary, but here are some common ones:
- Intermittent pain or tenderness
- Burning and numbness
- Friction and redness
- Swollen appearance
- Difficulties with walking and running
- Corns and calluses at the point of friction with the shoe
- Poor range of motion in the toe
Also, your foot doctors see accompanying hammertoes, bursitis, and metatarsalgia as they see numerous patients with bunions in their Needham, MA, office.
After a visual inspection and X-ray imaging of your foot, your podiatrist can diagnose your bunion definitely. Then, Dr. Mitry or Dr. Karter can customize a treatment plan for your particular needs. Care may include:
- Over the counter medications for pain (ibuprofen, for example)
- Strapping and padding to re-align and cushion the toe and side of the foot
- Customized orthotics to correct gait problems
- In-office corn and callus removal
- Wearing shoes which are roomy in the toe box
Bunionectomy is surgical removal of the bony bump on the side of foot. The big toe itself is then re-aligned to the proper position.
It will only get worse
The vast majority of bunions worsen over time. So, if you suspect you are developing one of these foot deformities, don't wait. See Dr. Mitry or Dr. Karter at Advanced Podiatry of Needham today. You'll like their compassionate and effective care, and how much better your foot feels after treatment. Call us for an appointment: we have office hours Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm. Phone (781) 444-4044.
If you take your foot health for granted, one condition quickly can call your attention to it. It's athlete's foot, or Tinea pedis, as podiatrists call it. In their Needham, MA, office, Dr. Michael Mitry and Dr. Christopher Karter treat this fungal infection, eliminating its many uncomfortable symptoms. If your feet are hot, itchy, red, and blistering, you may have athlete's foot and need the great treatment provided by Advanced Podiatry of Needham.
Symptoms of athlete's foot
The National Center for Biotechnology Information reports that athlete's foot troubles up to 15 percent of Americans--from children to senior adults, both men and women (although men seem more prone to it) and athletes and non-athletes alike.
However, other factors contribute to Tinea pedis symptoms. They include:
- Allergies, including eczema
- Compromised peripheral circulation
- Participation in athletics
Commonly, people who develop athlete's foot exhibit many similar symptoms, including:
- Sore and red skin, particularly between the toes
- Itching and burning
- Blistering, cracking, and peeling
Left untreated, the infection may become chronic. Plus, people who are immunosuppressed may develop secondary infections and foot ulcers. The infection may spread to other areas of the body such as the groin (jock itch) and hands.
Avoiding athlete's foot
Being proactive about athlete's foot really helps. Your Needham podiatrists remind their patients that the fungus spreads by direct contact with other people and by sharing bathroom and locker room areas, towels and nail clippers.
In short, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure as Benjamin Franklin once said. Dr. Mitry and Dr. Karter recommend these preventive strategies to keep athlete's foot at bay:
- Have clean feet. Wash them daily using soap and water and a clean towel to dry them completely, particularly between the toes.
- Wear clean socks daily, and put on a fresh pair whenever they feel sweaty.
- Change your shoes when they are sweaty because the Tinea pedis fungus loves darkness and dampness.
- Use anti-fungal foot powder or spray before you develop symptoms, particularly if you run or workout a lot.
- Trim your toenails with clean clippers only.
- Wear flip-flops in public swim areas, showers, and locker rooms.
- Wear well-ventilated shoes at all times when outdoors.
- Use anti-fungal laundry soap or chlorine bleach (on white socks) in the wash. If possible, hang your socks outside to dry because sunshine sanitizes.
Treating athlete's foot
If you have symptoms which last beyond two weeks, if your symptoms are severe, or you are diabetic or have compromised peripheral circulation, see Dr. Mitry or Dr. Karter as soon as possible. Simple visual examination of the feet suffices for diagnosis, but sometimes, a small skin scraping helps rule out other problems. Besides the above preventive measures, your podiatrist may prescribe an anti-fungal cream, ointment, or oral medication.
Get them back to normal with help from Advanced Podiatry of Needham in Needham, MA. We have convenient office hours Monday through Friday. Don't suffer from prolonged athlete's foot. Call today: (781) 444-4044.
Nail fungus isn't always easy to treat at home. If your toenail remains yellow despite months of diligently applying over-the-counter fungus medication, it may be time to consider a more effective option. Our Needham, MA, podiatrist, Dr. Michael Mitry of Advanced Podiatry of Needham, explains how laser nail fungus treatment can help you get rid of your yellow toenails.
How does laser treatment work?
Unlike topical products that only target the first few layers of your toenail, laser treatment reaches under your nail to eliminate fungus where it starts. Colorful pigments in the fungus give your nail its unsightly yellow appearance. Laser light targets those pigments, eliminating the fungal infection
The energy generated by the laser beam heats the fungus, causing it to die. Thanks to the pinpoint accuracy lasers offer, surrounding areas of healthy tissue won't be damaged by the treatment.
What does laser treatment feel like?
You might assume that a treatment that generates heat would be painful, but you'll only notice a tingling or slightly warm sensation in your foot. The laser produces short bursts of energy to ensure that the treatment isn't uncomfortable. After your treatment in our Needham office, your toe will feel perfectly fine, and you'll be able to carry on with the rest of your day.
When will I see results?
Although the fungus may be dead, your toenail will still look yellow after your treatment. You'll begin to see the effects of the treatment in the next several months. As the nail grows, the bottom section will appear clear. Eventually, your entire nail will be fungus free.
Although laser nail treatment is very effective in treating toenail fungus, the treatment won't prevent it from returning if you're exposed to the fungus in the future. You can lower your risk of another infection if you alternate your shoes, use an anti-fungal spray in your shoes, change sweaty socks frequently, avoid sharing socks or shoes, and wear sandals in locker and shower rooms and around public pool areas.
Clear up your toenail fungus with laser nail fungus treatment. Call our Needham, MA, podiatrist, Dr. Mitry of Advanced Podiatry of Needham, at (781) 444-4044 to schedule an appointment.
Would you like to keep your feet in good shape as you grow older? Although you might not realize it, your feet are just as affected by aging as other parts of your body. Our Needham, MA, podiatrist, Dr. Michael Mitry of Advanced Podiatry of Needham, shares a few tips that will help you care for your feet.
Slather some moisturizer on your feet
Dry skin, a particularly common effect of aging, occurs when the production of the natural oils that lubricate your skin decreases. Without sufficient moisture, your skin can quickly become dry, itchy and cracked. Applying moisturizer to your feet daily will help relieve these uncomfortable dry skin symptoms.
Buy comfortable shoes
Years of walking, standing, running and jumping can lead to foot pain as you age. Pain may occur if you have arch problems or arthritis in your feet or ankles, but your feet may hurt even if you don't have an underlying condition. As a result of age-related changes, the fatty deposits that help cushion the bottoms of your feet become thinner. Without a thick layer of protective layer of fat, walking on hard surfaces can be painful.
Making good shoe choices can help you avoid pain. When you visit Needham area shoe stores, look for footwear that supports your arches, cushions your feet and is sturdy enough to offer stability. Although you may have been able to wear inexpensive flip flops or flat shoes in the past, choosing shoes with sufficient support is a must as you grow older.
Avoid ingrown toenails
Your toenails can grown into your skin if you don't cut them straight across. Unfortunately, arthritis or mobility issues can sometimes make it difficult to cut your nails yourself. If this is the case, ask a friend or relative for help or call our Needham office to schedule a nail cutting appointment.
Look for signs of trouble
Daily foot exams can help you identify possible problems before they become out of control. Pay attention to the appearance of your feet and nails. For example, if you notice that your nails appear yellow, successfully treating your fungal infection may be easier if you catch in the early stages. Exams are particularly important if you have diabetes. If you see open sores, red skin, red streaks, numbness or a change in the temperature or color of your feet, let us know immediately. Treating diabetic foot conditions promptly will help you avoid serious complications.
Keep your feet healthy and comfortable with a visit to the foot doctor. Call our Needham, MA, podiatrist, Dr. Mitry of Advanced Podiatry of Needham, at (781) 444-4044 to schedule an appointment.