The Foot Blog
Posts for tag: Questions & Answers
In two previous blog posts, I discussed prevention of ingrown toenails and a home treatment that may provide some relief (for people who are otherwise in good health). However, if you currently have an ingrown toenail, there are some situations in which you should absolutely see a podiatrist and not attempt to treat it yourself.
You should see a podiatrist about an ingrown toenail if …
- You see drainage, excessive redness or signs of infection,
- You have severe pain,
- You've tried a home remedy and it didn't work, or
- You have diabetes, peripheral vascular disease or other circulatory disorders (if you have any of these conditions, you should see a podiatrist immediately, at the first sign of an ingrown toenail, to avoid serious complications.)
What can a podiatrist do to treat your ingrown toenail?
An experienced podiatrist can properly diagnose and determine the most effective treatment for your ingrown toenail. At The Foot & Ankle Center, our podiatrists routinely treat ingrown toenails. In many cases, we'll apply a numbing agent to your foot and remove the ingrown portion of the nail. We may also prescribe medication to treat any infection that has occurred. Some people have a chronic problem with a particular toenail that keeps becoming ingrown; in those cases there is a procedure we can do that will permanently prevent ingrown toenails. We can also advise you on ways to prevent ingrown toenails in the future, including proper nail care and shoes that fit well.
If you've been suffering with ingrown toenails, please know that we've been able to help many others who've had the same painful problem. I encourage you to make an appointment today, and see how we can help you.
In a previous blog post, I discussed prevention of ingrown toenails. But once you've got an ingrown toenail, what's the best treatment? Do you need to see a podiatrist, or can you treat ingrown toenails at home? There are two ways to answer this question, depending on whether you have a medical condition.
If you are diabetic, have peripheral vascular disease or other circulatory disorders:
Do not attempt to treat an ingrown toenail at home! If you suspect an ingrown toenail because you you have symptoms such as redness, swelling, drainage or pain, make an appointment with your podiatrist immediately! If you're diabetic, we have a standing rule at The Foot & Ankle Center: if someone calls to make an appointment about an acute foot injury and they let us know they're diabetic, we'll find a way to squeeze them in to see the podiatrist that same day — because it's vitally important to treat diabetic foot conditions immediately, in order to prevent a serious infection.
If you are in good health and do not have diabetes or circulatory disorders:
It's still a good idea to make an appointment with your podiatrist. However if the ingrown toenail is not severe or infected, you may try this home treatment first: Soak your foot in a basin of either warm salt water or warm, soapy water. Afterwards, apply an antiseptic to the ingrown toenail area and put a bandage over it to protect it. If you don't see improvement shortly thereafter, you should see your podiatrist. And, if you notice any drainage or excessive redness around the toenail, you should see your podiatrist immediately.
Never try to remove any part of an infected nail yourself.
This should only be done by your podiatrist. Avoid over-the-counter medications as well; these should only be taken on the advice of your podiatrist.
In an upcoming blog post, I'll discuss how we treat ingrown toenails at The Foot & Ankle Center. In the mean time, if you're dealing with painful ingrown toenails, we can help. I encourage you to make an appointment.
Ingrown toenails are a common condition that we treat at the Foot & Ankle Center.
Your toenails are supposed to grow straight out, but sometimes a toenail will start to curve as it grows out, and the corners or sides of that nail may start to dig into the soft tissue around the nail. Most of the cases we see impact the big toe, but you can get an ingrown toenail on any of your toes. The most noticeable symptom of an ingrown toenail is pain! You'll probably also notice redness and swelling and possibly some drainage around the affected nail.
Can ingrown toenails be prevented?
It depends on the cause. Sometimes ingrown toenails occur due to heredity, and you may be more susceptible if a parent had trouble with ingrown toenails. Other times an ingrown toenail could occur as the result of some sort of trauma to the foot.
How to prevent ingrown toenails:
One common cause of ingrown toenails is trimming your nails improperly. Use toenail clippers and cut your nails straight across – never curved or pointed – and use a nail file to gently smooth out any sharp corners. Another cause of ingrown toenails is shoes that don't fit properly. Avoid shoes that are pointy or too narrow in the toe, as these can cause or aggravate ingrown toenails. Also, make sure your socks are not too tight and your toes aren't crowded together.
In my next blog post, I'll discuss ways you may be able to treat ingrown toenails at home, and when you should absolutely see a podiatrist. In the mean time, if you're dealing with painful ingrown toenails, we can help. I encourage you to make an appointment.
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If you're one of the many people who suffer from heel spurs or heel pain — also known as plantar fasciitis — you may be wondering what options you have for getting some relief. Some heel pain sufferers may put off getting help because they think any effective treatment would have to involve surgery. The truth is that in most cases, you don't need surgery to get rid of heel pain.
Here at The Foot & Ankle Center, we have a 95 percent success rate in treating plantar fasciitis with non-surgical methods. Some of the ways we treat heel pain include stretching exercises we can teach you to do, cold therapy and anti-inflammatory medications. We may provide a splint for you to wear at night to keep the ligament stretched out. We can also fit you with a foot orthotic that you can slip into your shoe to support your foot and keep it in proper alignment, to prevent any further damage to your plantar fascia. And, we modify our own custom orthotics right here in our clinic, to ensure the highest quality and a proper fit.
So, these are some of the highly effective, non-surgical means that we use to treat heel pain. There are, of course, some situations where surgery is needed, but these cases are in the minority. Chances are we can treat your heel pain successfully without surgery, so you can start walking in comfort again.
If you've been suffering with heel pain, I encourage you to contact us — take the first step and make an appointment today.
For many people, having a professional manicure and pedicure is simply a nice, relaxing way to treat yourself. But if you're a cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy, choosing where to get your nails done can be a serious matter. Because chemo patients have a compromised immune system, they have to be extra cautious about preventing germs and infection. This is one very important reason that I opened the Foot & Hand Spa here inside The Foot & Ankle Center, on the campus of Johnston-Willis Hospital. This gives everyone — including cancer patients — a beautiful, comfortable place to have their nails done. And, it's absolutely clean; in fact our spa follows the same cleanliness standards as a hospital.
As a medical-grade nail spa, we emphasize overall foot health as well as aesthetics. We have only licensed nail technicians who understand the anatomy of the foot, diseases of the skin and nails, and the potential side effects of cancer treatments. Clients can rest easy, knowing that one of our board certified podiatrists is also available, if needed.
So, what's a pedicure like in our medical-grade spa, for a cancer patient? Our Chemotherapy Pedicures may vary slightly depending on the type of chemotherapy agent the patient is receiving, and how long ago the last treatment was. But a typical Chemotherapy Pedicure might go something like this: We'll start with a relaxing soak in a warm whirlpool bath with Tea Tree oil (which has natural antifungal properties) to soften and hydrate your skin. Then, we'll very gently push back the cuticles with an orangewood stick to decrease the chance of breaking the skin, and file and remove any dry, dead skin. We'll gently exfoliate your legs and feet, apply a mask to help hold in moisture, and then provide a relaxing, hydrating gentle massage to increase circulation and lock in moisture and nutrients. We'll finish with a buff or polish from our extensive selection of colors.
With our hospital-clean medical-grade nail spa, even cancer patients going through chemo can relax and treat themselves to a pampering pedicure. We also offer specialty pedicures for diabetics, for people with arthritis -- and for anyone who is concerned about cleanliness!
See all our Manicure & Pedicure Options, or click the button below to make an appointment:
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