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Posts for: April, 2020

By South Jersey Foot and Ankle Specialists, LLC
April 22, 2020
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Arch Problems  

The arches of the feet play a role in supporting your body’s weight when standing or in motion. The tarsal and metatarsal bones make up the arches of the feet, also receiving additional support and stability from tendons and ligaments; however, our feet, like the rest of our body, can be affected by infections, disorders, and structural changes that can impact not only the health of our feet but also our mobility. It’s important to recognize the warning signs of arch problems so you know when you need to see a podiatrist.

Arch Pain Causes

If you are dealing with arch pain it is most likely caused by an injury or by structural abnormalities in the foot. For example, those with very high arches as well as those with flat feet may experience arch problems due to these common structural issues.

As a result, there are other factors that could also lead to further arch problems including:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Aging
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Cavus foot
  • Posterior tibial tendon dysfunction

It’s important to understand a little bit more about these common foot disorders and how they could affect the arches of your feet.

Plantar fasciitis

This condition that causes inflammation and microtears in the plantar fascia is also the most common cause of heel pain. Of course, because the plantar fascia (a ligament that connects the toes to the heel bone) also supports the arches of the feet this can also lead to arch pain. This condition is usually the result of overuse and is seen most often in runners. If you have plantar fasciitis it’s important to avoid physical activities until the fascia has fully healed.

Cavus foot

This condition, which affects the structure of the foot, leads to excessively high arches. People who’ve had a stroke, as well as people with certain conditions such as cerebral palsy may be more likely to develop cavus foot. This problem causes arch pain when standing or walking and can increase the risk for ankle injuries. Your podiatrist may choose to treat cavus foot through custom-made orthotics (shoe inserts), bracing, or by recommending specialized and supportive footwear.

Posterior tibial tendon dysfunction

The posterior tibial tendon runs from the calf muscles to the inner portion of the foot. This condition leads to changes in the tendon, which in turn affects its ability to support the arches of the foot. Flat feet can be caused by posterior tibial tendon dysfunction, and this is often the cause of flat feet that develop in adulthood. Like the other conditions above, treatment for PTTD usually involves bracing, orthotics, or providing custom devices that provide additional support to the arches of the feet.

If you are experiencing foot pain, swelling or other problems that affect mobility then it’s time that you turned to a podiatrist for care. Conditions and injuries that don’t respond to rest and at-home care may require more advanced treatments and therapies.

April 13, 2020
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Ingrown Toenails  

Here are some helpful tips for preventing an ingrown toenail.

If you’ve dealt with an ingrown toenail before then you know how painful they can be. If you find yourself dealing with them rather regularly then you may be particularly curious as to what you can do to prevent another one from happening. From the office of our Vineland, NJ, foot doctor Dr. Jeffrey Belancio, here are some ways to reduce your risk for an ingrown toenail.

Wear Proper Shoes

The shoes you wear can increase your chances for ingrown toenails if you aren’t careful. Shoes that are too tight or bunch up the toes can put too much pressure on the nails. It’s also important that you are wearing the appropriate footwear for the activities you are performing. For example, athletes and those who work in certain environments (e.g. construction sites; factories) are often more at risk for foot and toenail-related injuries. By wearing steel-toed shoes or proper athletic footwear you can provide ample support and protection.

Understand the Basics of Trimming Nails

Yes, there are techniques involved in how to properly trim your toenails. In fact, improper trimming is one of the leading causes of an ingrown toenail. So, if you are particularly prone to this nail problem, it’s best to take a look at how you trim your nails.

While you should trim them often to make sure they don’t get too long, you also don’t want to trim them too short either. If toenails are too short this can put added pressure on them when wearing shoes, which can cause the edge of the nail to grow directly into the skin. A good rule of thumb to follow: Keep nails level with the tips of your toes.

While curving your toenails may be a more appealing look, this can also increase your risk for ingrown toenails. Whether you are trimming your nails yourself or turning to a salon for a professional pedicure, it’s important that you trim your toenails straight across and not at a curve.

Check Your Feet

If you have diabetes it is particularly important that you examine your feet every day to look for signs of an ingrown toenail or other problems that require immediate attention. Even the smallest symptoms and issues could turn into ulcers, infections and other serious complications. Our foot doctor works with many diabetic patients living in Vineland, NJ, and can provide you with the customized treatment and care you need to protect the health of your feet.

If you are looking for a foot doctor who can address your ingrown toenail, heel pain or other foot problems then call South Jersey Foot and Ankle Specialists in Vineland, NJ, today at (856) 839-0579.

By South Jersey Foot and Ankle Specialists, LLC
April 07, 2020
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Athlete's Foot  

Athlete’s foot is a common fungal infection of the feet that is typically characterized by itchy, burning patches of skin between the toes that may also crack or bleed. Since untreated athlete’s foot can spread to the toenails, it’s particularly important that you treat this problem as soon as you notice it. Athlete’s foot won’t typically clear up by itself; however, home remedies and treatments may be all you need to eliminate the fungal infection.

Treating Athlete’s Foot

If you are an otherwise healthy individual who is just dealing with an unfortunate bout of athlete’s foot chances are pretty good that you’ll be able to treat the problem on your own. There are a variety of over-the-counter antifungal creams and ointments that can be applied directly to the skin. Make sure to read and follow all instructions to ensure that the medication gets rid of the infection.

Along with properly treating your athlete’s foot it’s also important to keep feet as dry as possible. After all, fungus thrives best in warm, damp environments. By keeping feet dry you make it a less hospitable environment for this infection. This means wearing clean socks and shoes every day. Opt for socks with natural fibers, which are breathable and can wick away sweat. If your feet are particularly sweaty you can also apply an antifungal powder throughout the day.

When to See a Podiatrist

If you find that cracked, painful feet are making it difficult to stand or move around then this means it’s time to see a podiatrist for treatment; however, if the fungal infection isn’t impacting mobility then you may be able to treat the problem on your own with over-the-counter medications.

If you notice signs of an infection such as a swollen foot, pus draining from the foot, increased redness, or open sores it’s also important that you see a doctor right away. Antibiotics will be necessary in order to treat the infection.

If you are dealing with diabetes, nerve damage in your feet or other problems that impact the health of your feet it’s even more important that you see a podiatrist right away if you notice symptoms of athlete’s foot or other problems. Do not try to treat the infection on your own, as this could lead to more serious complications.

If you are dealing with persistent or recurring athlete’s foot it’s important that you also have a podiatrist that you can turn to for answers. While this condition may seem harmless it’s important that you don’t leave it untreated. A podiatrist can provide you with the treatment you’re looking for.

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