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Monday, 08 October 2018 00:00

Are Plantar Warts Painful?

The majority of warts can be unsightly and painful, and a plantar wart is no exception. This type of wart develops on the heel of the foot and will grow inward as a result of the pressure the feet endures on a daily basis. It is known to be caused by the human papillomavirus, which is also referred to as HPV, and may be more prevalent in children and people who have compromised immune systems. This contagious virus can be transmitted by direct contact with a person who may carry the germ or from an object that may have been contaminated. Some of the symptoms that might be associated with plantar warts may include a small area that may be rough in texture on the heel of the foot. Additionally, there may be tiny black dots in the center of the wart, and you may experience pain while walking or standing. If you are afflicted with plantar warts, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist who can offer correct treatment options that may include removal of the wart.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

Read more about All About Plantar Warts

Many people who are involved in sporting activities have experienced the pain and discomfort of foot and ankle injuries. It may typically result in significant downtime from running or jumping to allow for proper healing to begin. There are several ways to possibly prevent foot and ankle injuries from occurring, including warming up the muscles before starting to run, properly stretching the muscles in the foot and ankle, in addition to gradually increasing the time spent on the chosen activity. It’s important to wear proper shoes for walking and running, and this may aid in preventing any trauma inflicted on the foot and ankle. Ankle sprains are a very common injury to endure, as well as an Achilles tendon rupture or tear. This type of injury may affect the plantar fascia, which is tissue that is located on the bottom of the foot that connects the heel to the toes. If you are experiencing any pain in the foot or ankle, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist as soon as possible.

Foot and ankle trauma is common among athletes and the elderly. If you have concerns that you may have experienced trauma to the foot and ankle, consult with Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Foot and ankle trauma covers a range of injuries all over the foot; common injuries include:

  • Broken bones
  • Muscle strains
  • Injuries to the tendons and ligaments
  • Stress fractures

Symptoms

Symptoms of foot and ankle injuries vary depending on the injury, but more common ones include:

  • Bruising
  • Inflammation/ Swelling
  • Pain

Diagnosis

To properly diagnose the exact type of injury, podiatrists will conduct a number of different tests. Some of these include sensation and visual tests, X-rays, and MRIs. Medical and family histories will also be taken into account.

Treatment

Once the injury has been diagnosed, the podiatrist can than offer the best treatment options for you. In less severe cases, rest and keeping pressure off the foot may be all that’s necessary. Orthotics, such as a specially made shoes, or immobilization devices, like splints or casts, may be deemed necessary. Finally if the injury is severe enough, surgery may be necessary.

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

Read more about Foot and Ankle Fractures
Monday, 24 September 2018 00:00

How Increased Weight May Affect the Feet

Recent research has shown that approximately 70 percent of the population in the Bahamas are obese. This typically impacts the general health of the feet as a result of the additional weight the feet must endure. An increased BMI, or body mass index, generally accompanies any weight that is gained. This may produce unwanted foot conditions that may include plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, arthritis and general “wear and tear” of the bones, ligaments, and tendons. Additionally, the structure of the foot may be negatively affected, which may aid in difficulty maintaining an exercise program. While purchasing shoes, it’s important to choose shoes that fit correctly, which may help to diminish a portion of the pain that may be experienced. If you feel you are obese and would like additional information about this condition on how it may affect the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Obesity has become very problematic at this point in time and can have extremely negative effects on the feet. If you’re an obese individual and are concerned about your feet, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Obesity and your Feet

Since your feet are what support your entire weight when standing, any additional weight can result in pain and swelling. Being overweight is one of the main contributors to foot complications.

Problems & Complications

Extra Weight – Even putting on just a few extra pounds could create serious complications for your feet. As your weight increases, your balance and body will shift, creating new stresses on your feet. This uneven weight distribution can cause pain, even while doing the simplest tasks, such as walking.

Diabetes – People who are overweight are at serious risk of developing type-2 diabetes, which has a drastic impact on the health of your feet. As you get older, your diabetes might worsen, which could lead to loss of feeling in your feet, sores, and bruises. You could also become more prone to various infections.

Plantar fasciitis – Pressure and stress that is placed on muscles, joints, and tendons can trigger plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation of tissue that forms along the bottom of the foot. 

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

Read more about Obesity and the Feet
Monday, 17 September 2018 00:00

Symptoms of Toenail Fungus

A condition that is referred to as onychomycosis is commonly known as a fungal infection of the toenails. It is common among people who have sweaty feet or enjoy spending time swimming. It may occur as a result of the small fungi seeping through tiny cuts in the skin, or possibly lodging between the nail and the nail bed. It may be common to find this type of infection in the toenails because of the warm environment the shoes and socks provide. There are several symptoms associated with this condition, including having a yellow, white or brown appearance, the nail becoming brittle and breaking easily, or the nail becomes uncomfortable. Despite the unsightly appearance, they typically do not pose a health threat unless the patient is diabetic. Research has shown there may be preventative measures that can be taken, including washing and drying the feet, especially between the toes, trimming the nails properly and frequently, and avoiding wearing other people’s shoes. If you feel you have a toenail fungus, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist as quickly as possible for a correct diagnosis and to learn about treatment options.

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. Richard Silverstein of Union Foot Care. 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 Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Treating Toenail Fungus

The type of footwear referred to as flip flops are popular summer shoes that are made of thin soles and typically are not meant to be worn for extended periods of time. Despite the fact that many people indulge in wearing these types of shoes, there may be moderate discomfort and symptoms that can be associated with them. These may include an achy feeling that may be present in the foot and ankle in addition to the formation of calluses and blisters. Other foot conditions that may develop as a result of wearing flip flops may be the development of bunions and hammertoes. The risk of injury may be increased from choosing to wear this type of shoe and this may occur as a result of a lack of stability. If you have questions pertaining to flip flops and would like additional information about the pros and cons for wearing this type of shoe, please schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who will be able to answer any questions you may have.

Flip-flops can cause a lot of problems for your feet. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

Flip-Flops and Feet

Flip-flops have managed to become a summer essential for a lot of people. While the shoes may be stylish and easy to slip on and off, they can be dangerous to those who wear them too often. These shoes might protect you from fungal infections such as athlete’s foot, but they can also give you foot pain and sprained ankles if you trip while wearing them.

When are they okay to wear?

Flip-flops should only be worn for very short periods of time. They can help protect your feet in places that are crawling with fungi, such as gym locker rooms. Athlete’s foot and plantar warts are two common fungi that flip-flops may help protect your feet against.

Why are they bad for my feet?

These shoes do not offer any arch support, so they are not ideal for everyday use. They also do not provide shock absorption or heel cushioning which can be problematic for your feet. Additionally, you may suffer from glass cuts, puncture wounds, and stubbed toes since they offer little protection for your feet.

More Reasons Why They Are Bad for Your Feet

  • They Slow You Down
  • May Cause Blisters and Calluses
  • Expose Your Feet to Bacteria

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

Read more about Flipping Out About Flip Flops
Tuesday, 04 September 2018 00:00

How Elderly People Can Check Their Feet

Many people who are elderly may develop uncomfortable foot conditions as they age. Research has shown there may be many reasons for this to occur. This may include a loss of cushioning in the skin and the nails losing moisture, which may become brittle. If you are contending with poor circulation, any sores that may be present may prove difficult to heal. People of all ages should check their feet regularly to look for cuts, blisters, or ingrown toenails. This is especially true of the older population who may experience difficulty in seeing clearly or bending down. Some patients find it helpful to use a mirror to see the bottom of their feet, or may ask a family member or friend for assistance. It’s important to have your feet measured frequently to ensure the correct size shoe is worn, in addition to wearing socks that fit snugly but are not too tight. If you find conditions such as ingrown toenails, bunions, or corns have developed, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist as quickly as possible for correct treatment.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

The Elderly and their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions 

  • Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet, and can hide many life threating medical conditions.
  • Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
  • Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
  • Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
  • Shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Pressure sores
  • Loss of circulation in legs & feet
  • Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

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

Read more about Elderly Foot Care
Monday, 27 August 2018 00:00

Heel Pain and the Plantar Fasciitis

If you find you are experiencing heel pain throughout the day, especially in the morning, you may have a foot condition that is referred to as plantar fasciitis. Tenderness in the heel, a tingling sensation, or limping, are among the symptoms of plantar fasciitis. This condition develops as a result of the plantar fascia becoming torn, which may often be due to excessive strain the foot endures during physical activity. When this band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot becomes injured, patients will most likely feel intense heel pain. It’s important to have a proper diagnosis performed, and this may be accomplished by undergoing an MRI in addition to a physical examination. There are many treatment options available, and it’s suggested to schedule a consultation with a podiatrist who can choose the best one for you.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein  from Union Foot Care. Our doctor 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 Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
Monday, 20 August 2018 00:00

Common Childhood Foot Problems

If you have young children, you should be aware of the different foot problems and abnormalities they may encounter throughout development. Some of these common conditions include in-toeing, flat feet, out-toeing, and tiptoe walking. In-toeing and out-toeing are conditions in which a child’s foot turns inward or outward, respectively. However, these conditions tend to correct themselves when your child approaches the ages of 8 or 9. Tiptoe walking is common in children aged 3 and under, and it involves the child walking solely on their tiptoes. Nevertheless, children’s feet tend to grow rapidly before the age of 5. Consequently, it is important that you give your child proper fitting footwear to promote healthy feet development. If you have concerns about the development of your child’s feet, you may find it helpful to speak with a podiatrist.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein of Union Foot Care. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

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

Read more about How to Care for Your Child's Feet

Most people associate flip flops with sunny days and relaxed summer months. One benefit that many people enjoy is the ease of wearing this type of shoe. They do this, however, in spite of the many problems that may arise as a result of frequently wearing flip flops. A pre-existing foot condition that may become worse would be bunions, which are large bony protrusions on the side of the big toe. This may occur because the toes must consistently flex to keep this type of shoe on, often causing pressure on the side of the foot. People who have flat feet are advised to cease wearing flip flops because of the lack of support. Additional disadvantages may consist of increased heel pain, possible exposure to a fungal infection, and an altered posture, which may could affect the entire structure of the body. Research has shown if you choose to wear flip flops, it may be beneficial to significantly limit the time they are worn.

Flip-flops are not always the best choice of footwear. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

Flip-Flops and Feet

When the weather starts warming up, people enjoy wearing flip-flops.  Flip-flops are comfortable, stylish, and easy to slip on and off; they're perfect for any summer beach goer.  However, these shoes can cause harm to the feet.

How Can Flip-Flops Affect Me Long-Term?

  • Ankle problems
  • Hip problems
  • Lower back problems
  • Pain in the balls of the feet
  • Problems with foot arches
  • Changes in the way you walk

Are there injuries associated with flip-flops?

Yes.  Since flip-flops are relatively weak and do not provide the same amount of support as sneakers, people who wear flip-flops regularly are more susceptible to injuries. On top of that, the open nature of the shoe makes your feet more prone to other problems, such as cuts and even infections.  Common injuries and ailments include:

  • Sprained ankles
  • Blisters
  • Infections
  • Cuts and Scrapes

I like wearing flip-flops, are there safe alternatives?

When buying flip-flops, try to find ones that have sturdy soles and that are made of high quality materials that will support for your feet.  These flip-flops will cost more, but will also last longer as a result.

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

Read more about Flip Flops and Feet

If you see a small bony area at the base and side of the big toe, you may have what is known as a bunion. This is typically a result of a deformed bone structure, and it appears as if the feet are not aligned correctly. There may be several causes for bunions to form, including having low arches, which may lead to instability as walking occurs, medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, or injuries that the foot may have incurred. Recent research has shown that women who frequently wear high heels could cause a pre-existing case of bunions to become worse, and may notice that the toes do not have enough room to move about. The area may feel tender and appear red, possibly accompanied by swelling and a burning sensation. Complications may develop as a result of not seeking medical treatment. Many patients may experience calluses and difficulty in walking when bunions have developed, and it’s suggested to seek the counsel of a podiatrist, who may provide information about the correct treatment options.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein of Union Foot Care. Our doctor 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 Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Bunions
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