Get Answers to Your Questions About Foot and Ankle Problems From Our Plano Podiatrist
When you’re living with heel or foot pain, you don’t want to wait for answers. Get help fast by looking through this list of frequently asked questions with answers from our Plano podiatrist.
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How Can I Prevent Blisters?
If you have had a blister develop on your foot before, you can relate to the discomfort even a small one can cause. A blister can be painful, make it difficult to wear shoes, and is vulnerable to infection if not treated properly. Luckily, there are easy and effective ways to prevent blisters.
If you are a runner, heading out on a long hike, or want to stop a blister that is healing from coming back, there are some helpful steps you can take. First, friction can increase when your feet are hot and sweaty, so do your best to make sure your feet are always clean, cool, and dry. Second, shoes need to be comfortable from the start--do not buy them if they need to be “broken in.” Buy shoes with a thumb’s width of space between the shoe and the end of your toes. Socks made of synthetic materials will wick moisture and reduce friction on your feet. Small pads or moleskin on pressure points will protect areas against friction as well.
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Can I Care for a Sprained Ankle Myself?
Whether you have a small ankle sprain from stepping in a pothole or a severe twist where you can’t stand up, your injury needs prompt treatment so that you can avoid chronic pain in the future. The first step of at-home care for a sprained ankle is the RICE method, which stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Immediately after your injury, rest the ankle. If you need to get up, use crutches. Don’t place weight on the ankle until you know the extent of your injuries. If you try to walk it off, you risk re-injury, instability, and arthritis.
Before you ice, wrap your ankle in a compression bandage. This is going to immobilize the injured area and act as a barrier between the ice pack and your skin.
Elevate your foot—above the heart is best—and ice the area for 10 to 20 minutes to reduce pain and swelling. Take it off for 10 minutes and repeat.
As soon as you can, we recommend that you call Richardson Podiatry Associates here in Texas at (972) 690-5374 for a diagnosis. We can take an X-ray of your ankle and determine the next steps for therapy and treatment.
What are the Most Common Running Injuries?
The most common running injuries are stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, shin splints, runner’s knee, ankle sprains, Achilles tendinitis, pulled muscles, hamstring problems, and iliotibial band syndrome.
If you have mild symptoms, you can still run with some of these injuries if you couple that with conservative treatments like stretching, icing, and rest. We specialize in sports injuries and can help tape the problem area, recommend stretching techniques, and also make custom orthotics to correct your problem and ease your pain.
You may want to cut back on the amount of miles you run or how hard you push yourself, all the while remaining cautious and paying attention to any symptoms as you continue your program. Stop running immediately if you have any sharp, severe, or persistent pain, tenderness, and swelling.
If you need any help at all from a running injury, make an appointment at Richardson Podiatry Associates by calling (972) 690-5374 or scheduling one on our website.
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Is Sever's Disease Causing my Child's Heel Pain?
Where the Achilles tendon and the plantar fascia attach to the heel bone is a growth center that is vulnerable during a child’s growing years. Until it fuses to the heel bone, repeated strain or excessive tension on this area could lead to significant heel pain and discomfort.
If your child is around the age of 8-15, is involved in sports that require a lot of running and jumping (such as gymnastics, basketball, baseball, football or track), and has pain at the back of the heel bone, it is possible Sever’s disease is to blame. Having a pronated foot, high arches, flat feet, and obesity are other contributing factors for this condition. If your child experiences redness, swelling, difficulty walking, heel pain in the morning, and pain if you squeeze the heel on both sides, contact Dr. Gene Reister for a complete evaluation to determine if the injury is due to Sever’s disease.
You can reach Richardson Podiatry Associates in Richardson, TX by calling (972) 690-5374. Make your child’s foot health a priority and call as soon as symptoms appear.
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How is Clubfoot Treated?
Clubfoot is a congenital foot condition in which the feet are turned down and in so the bottom of the foot points in or up. Clubfoot treatment begins soon after birth, so that the child gains a functional foot with normal mobility.
It involves manipulation and casting using the Ponseti method to correct the abnormality. The casting is repeated every 1-2 weeks for 2-4 months. After this period, if the feet still need help getting into normal positioning, surgery may be required. It usually involves lengthening or releasing ligaments and tendons and/or repositioning the bones of the ankle. Braces or splints are needed after either method to protect the feet and keep them in the correct position. If started right away, most children respond very well to these forms of treatment and have no long-term pain or side effects.
Contact Dr. Gene Reister if you have further questions or concerns about your child’s foot health. Call our office in Richardson, TX at (972) 690-5374.
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Is Sever's Disease Preventable in Children?
There are a few specific foot conditions for which children in particular are at risk. Sever’s disease is a painful disorder that occurs in the growth plate of the heel where the Achilles tendon and the plantar fascia attach to the bone. It is a common reason for heel pain in children around the ages of 9-13 whose growth plate has not yet matured and fused to the heel bone.
While this is a condition that can occur in any child, there are aggravating factors of which to be aware. By eliminating these, you are more likely to prevent the problem from developing. Once such factor is repeated stress from high impact activities. So if your child is in track, basketball, gymnastics, or soccer, ensure they have proper footwear and do not allow them to overdo it. Plenty of rest amidst a sports season is important too. Obesity contributes to stress on the heel so addressing any health concerns will reduce your risk for this disorder. Finally, in addition to protecting their feet with proper footwear and monitoring activity level, consider orthotics to correct high arches or flat feet which can play a part in Sever’s disease as well.
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For more information contact Dr. Gene Reister. He’ll be happy to answer any questions you have. Visit our Richardson, TX office or call (972) 690-5374 for an appointment today.
What Should I Look for in my Child's Feet?
Foot pain is not normal and any pain that affects your child’s walking and activity level for more than a few days should be looked at. Below are some common conditions your child may face.
If their toenail is red, inflamed and/or infected, it is likely an ingrown toenail that needs treatment. The nail has curved downward and is growing into the surrounding skin. This can be very painful. A bump on the bottom of the foot may be a plantar wart that can spread and cause difficulty walking if left untreated. If your child’s foot lacks an arch, it is called flatfoot, and this condition may need intervention if he or she complains of foot pain or cramping in their feet or legs. Finally, repetitive stress from high impact sports could lead to Sever’s disease, an injury to the growth plate at the back of the heel. Seek treatment should your child complain of heel pain.
We treat all ages and foot conditions at Richardson Podiatry Associates, so contact us any time you have a concern about your child’s foot health. Call Dr. Gene Reister at (972) 690-5374 to make an appointment at our office in Richardson, TX.
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How do Orthotics Work?
If the structure of your feet is faulty, or an injury or deformity arises and affects how your feet function, orthotics are a way to protect them. We use orthotics to alleviate pain and excess strain and pressure on your feet, which in turn can also reduce the strain on your ankles, knees, hips, and lower back.
How do orthotics work? An orthotic, which is most often custom-molded to your foot, slips inside your shoe and is designed to either control an abnormal motion (functional) or provide extra cushioning and support (accommodative). An orthotic can stabilize the foot and limit how much it can move while standing or walking, it can help distribute weight evenly across the foot so that no one area is bearing more weight than it should, and it can cushion sensitive areas of the foot. This type of insert is beneficial for treating conditions such as plantar fasciitis, metatarsalgia, bunions, bursitis, tendonitis, shin splints, diabetic foot ulcers, and heel pain.
If you would like more information about how orthotics may bring relief for your foot pain, contact Dr. Gene Reister at Richardson Podiatry Associates. Make an appointment at our Richardson, TX office by calling (972) 690-5374.
Difference Between Custom Orthotics and Shoe Inserts?
Custom orthotics vs. store-bought shoe inserts: What’s the difference? Custom orthotics are prescribed by a podiatrist and are uniquely shaped to your foot, while shoe inserts are a generic, over-the-counter pair that isn’t as customized. When we design additional support in the form of an orthotic, we can treat and prevent problems like plantar fasciitis, diabetic foot ulcers, and bunions. Inserts might relieve some minor pain problems, but they won’t be as effective. Orthotics cost more than shoe inserts from the drug store, but they will last a lot longer.
If you’re looking for a quick fix for a night out, a shoe insert might be fine. However, if you have larger issues that are causing you pain, call Dr. Gene Reister in Richardson, TX, at (972) 690-5374. He can help you avoid surgery by evaluating your feet and making a customized mold that will address your foot troubles.
Can Neuropathy be Cured?
Can neuropathy be cured? Well, there are several types of neuropathy and each can bring its own set of symptoms. At the root is nerve damage, which can impair your ability to move, talk, breathe, and feel heat, cold, or pain, depending on which type you have. We are well acquainted with neuropathy of the feet, which is a common symptom for those with diabetes.
Tingling, numbness, or even complete loss of sensation can happen when nerves become damaged due to high levels of glucose in the blood. Unfortunately, neuropathy is not a condition that can be cured. Damaged nerves cannot be reversed to become healthy once again. However, there’s a lot that you can do to prevent the damage from becoming worse. It is important to seek treatment at the onset of any numbness or loss of sensation in your feet. Dr. Gene Reister can help you manage your condition with a variety of conservative treatment methods and prevention strategies.
Contact Richardson Podiatry Associates in Richardson, TX, today if you are struggling with neuropathy and are interested in treatment that will improve your quality of life. Call us at (972) 690-5374 or request an appointment online.
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