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The overall feeling of your body may be improved by properly stretching your feet. It is an effective method of keeping them flexible, which can make daily activities easier to accomplish. A popular stretch for the sole of the foot is practiced when a tennis ball is used. It can be placed under the foot and rolled back and forth. This may be helpful in massaging specific pressure points that are located in the bottom of the foot. A yoga pose that is referred to as mountain pose, can be beneficial in keeping the toes strong. This is performed by standing with your weight evenly distributed on both feet, and gently lifting the toes up while keeping the rest of the foot on the floor. Strong ankles can be maintained when the foot is pointed and flexed, which may help to increase mobility. If you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching the feet, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with one of our podiatrists of The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous one, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising and ice and rest the foot. It is advised to then see a podiatrist for help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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A common form of arthritis that is known as gout may be prevalent among men over the age of forty. This painful condition can be caused by genetic factors, or from eating foods that have elevated levels of purines. This may cause crystals to form in the joints, and often affects the big toe. These types of foods can include shellfish, alcohol, red meat, or drinks that have high sugar levels. The pain typically starts at night, and in severe attacks, anything that touches the affected area may be intolerable. This condition can be diagnosed by performing a joint aspiration. This technique involves extracting a small amount of fluid from the affected joint, followed by analyzing it for high levels of uric acid. There are specific medications that may be available for the treatment of gout. Additionally, these types of attacks may be prevented when healthy eating habits are implemented into your daily routine. If you are experiencing gout, it is suggested that you speak with a podiatrist who can guide you toward proper treatment options.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists of The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Wounds on the feet are common in diabetic patients. Many patients may have difficulty in feeling any discomfort on their feet, which may be a result of neuropathy. It is important to inspect your feet daily if you are diabetic, so any cuts, scrapes, or bruises can be promptly treated. A sore on the foot may lead to a foot ulcer. This is a type of wound that can possibly lead to amputation and must be diagnosed and treated correctly. Some of the symptoms that are associated with this type of wound can consist of a foul odor emanating from the area, swelling, and it is often painful when walked on. It is beneficial to properly clean the wound, apply the correct dressing, and wear shoes that have ample room for the entire foot. If you are afflicted with diabetes, and have developed a foot ulcer, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can help you to manage your condition.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with one of our podiatrists of The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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The medical term that is known as onychomycosis is commonly referred to as toenail fungus. It can happen to any part of the toenail, and the frequency of this occurrence may increase with age. A common symptom associated with this type of fungus that may occur is a white or yellow discoloration of the nail. Another system that may arise is the nail becoming thick or brittle, and possibly crumbling. In severe cases, the entire nail may disintegrate, and can look unsightly. This condition is caused by a fungus that lives and thrives in warm and moist environments. These places can consist of public swimming pools, shower room floors, and locker rooms. It is considered to be contagious, so it is beneficial to wear appropriate shoes while in these areas. There are several treatment techniques that may be available, so it is strongly suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can determine the best option for you.

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 one of our podiatrists of The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about toenail fungus

The medical condition that is referred to as plantar fasciitis is often characterized by pain that is felt in the heel area of the foot. It occurs when the plantar fascia becomes irritated or torn, and often causes severe pain and discomfort. This is a portion of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes and runs along the sole of the foot. The plantar fascia can become inflamed as a result of obesity, a lack of arch support, or possibly from a sudden injury. Heel pain is typically worse upon arising in the morning, and it may subside when the feet are elevated. Relief may be found by wearing orthotics, which help to realign the foot and alleviate a portion of the pressure on the heel. Additionally, wearing a heel cushion may bring partial comfort. If you are afflicted with plantar fasciitis, it is beneficial to consult with a podiatrist who can offer proper treatment solutions.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists of The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis





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