Items filtered by date: April 2021

Friday, 30 April 2021 21:17

What Are Bunions?

bunionBunions are a common foot disorder characterized by the appearance of a bony bump on the side of the foot at the base of the big toe. Bunions grow slowly due to pressure on the joint of the big toe. This pressure causes the big toe to move out of place and lean toward the other toes. Bunions can be the result of genetics, lifestyle factors, or a combination of both. Wearing shoes that are too tight, high heels, or shoes that have a narrow toe box may create bunions as well. Some people are naturally predisposed to developing bunions, and their risk may increase if they wear ill-fitting shoes. Certain foot conditions, such as arthritis and flat feet, can also make bunions more likely. Without treatment, bunions tend to worsen and grow larger causing severe pain and discomfort, making it difficult to wear shoes. If you have developed a bunion it is recommended that you see a chiropodist for treatment. 

Bunions progressively worsen over time and may cause walking in your shoes to become difficult. To learn more about bunions, please consult with one of our chiropodists of The Footcare Centre. Our chiropodists will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

What Are Bunions? 

A bunion is a bony bump that protrudes from the base of the big toe. Bunions are caused due to a misalignment of the first metatarsal. The characteristic bump of a bunion forms when the metatarsal shifts outwards from its proper position. Bunions develop slowly over time and progressively worsen without treatment. The skin over the bunion may develop calluses due to the friction from shoes. Eventually, a bunion can make walking uncomfortable or even painful. Bunions are one of the most common foot deformities and are especially common in women and older adults.

Symptoms

A bunion appears as a bulging bump on the outside of the base of the big toe.

The bunion may also: 

  • Be swollen, red, or sore 
  • Develop corns or calluses over it
  • Cause pain
  • Limit the big toe’s range of motion

Treatment

There are several different treatments available for bunions. Conservative treatment options include wearing shoes with a wider toe box, cushioning the bunion with a specialized pad, wearing shoe inserts, icing the bunion if it becomes inflamed, and taking medications to relieve pain. In more severe cases, surgery can be an option. Surgical procedures for bunions may involve removing the swollen tissue around the bunion, straightening the big toe, realigning the bones at the front of the foot, or a combination of these procedures. 

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

Read more about bunions

Friday, 23 April 2021 19:15

What Causes Cracked Heels?

cracked heels 1000x500Dry cracked skin on the heels can be frustrating, unsightly, painful, and irritating. Cracked heels may be caused by dehydration of the skin, extreme weather, wearing open-backed shoes, or medical conditions such as eczema and athlete’s foot. Cracked heels can be prevented by avoiding exposure to very hot or cold weather, and wearing appropriate footwear that protects your feet. When bathing, it is suggested to avoid using very hot water and soaps with drying ingredients such as sodium lauryl sulfate and artificial fragrances. Moisturizing your feet regularly can help reduce dryness as well. If you have dry, cracked heels that are embarrassing or causing you pain or discomfort, it is recommended that you consult with a chiropodist for treatment. 

Cracked heels, also known as heel fissures, can cause pain and discomfort. If your cracked heels are bothering you, please consult with one of our chiropodists of The Footcare Centre. Our chiropodists will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

Dry, thickened skin around the rim of the heel is typically the first sign of cracked heels. While this condition is common and usually just a nuisance, some cases can be more severe. If left untreated and as more pressure is placed on the heel, the cracks become deeper and eventually walking and standing can be painful. These deep cracks or fissures can bleed and also become infected. Those with diabetes need to be especially careful as fissures could lead to diabetic foot ulcers. 

Causes

Cracked heels can be the result of several different factors, including: 

  • Dry skin
  • Taking long, hot showers or using harsh soaps
  • Standing for long periods of time
  • Walking barefoot
  • Walking in shoes with an open back, such as sandals or flip flops
  • Wearing shoes that do not fit properly
  • Living in a cold or dry climate 
  • Certain skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis

Treatment

There are many at home treatment remedies for cracked heels. Applying moisturizers to the heel can help hydrate the skin. Soaking your feet in warm water and exfoliating them with a loofah or pumice stone can help to buff away dead skin cells. If you are afflicted with cracked heels, it is recommended that you see a chiropodist for treatment. 

Prevention

You can prevent cracked heels by:

  • Avoiding standing in one position for prolonged periods of time
  • Wearing well-fitted shoes with a closed back
  • Washing your feet with gentle soaps and lukewarm water
  • Moisturizing the feet daily

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

Read more about cracked heels and the feet

Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Friday, 16 April 2021 21:59

What Causes Ingrown Toenails?

ingrown toenail 2Ingrown toenails are a common condition in which the outer edge of a toenail grows into the surrounding skin. This typically occurs on the big toe, and can cause pain, swelling, and redness in the affected area. Ingrown toenails can be caused by wearing tight, ill-fitting shoes, shoes with pointed toes, and shoes with high heels, which can compress the toes and force the toenails to curve into the skin. Trimming the toenails improperly can also cause them to grow into the skin. Toenails should be trimmed straight across, without rounding the edges of the nail. Injury to the toenail, fungal infections, taking certain medications, and having an irregular nail shape can also lead to ingrown toenails. If you suffer from painful ingrown toenails or are prone to them, it is recommended that you seek the care of a chiropodist. 

Ingrown toenails may require medical attention. If you have significant pain or notice signs of infection from an ingrown toenail, please consult with one of our chiropodists of The Footcare Centre. Our chiropodists will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

What Is an Ingrown Toenail? 

An ingrown toenail occurs when the edges of a toenail grows into the surrounding skin. Usually the toenails of the big toe are affected, however, an ingrown toenail can happen on any toe. Sometimes, the area can become infected leading to potentially serious complications. The ingrown toenail may be caused by improper trimming of the toenail, wearing ill-fitting shoes, or injury to the nail.

Symptoms

The symptoms of an ingrown toenail include: 

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Warmth
  • Pus or drainage from the affected nail or a fever may indicate an infection of the area. 

Treatment

Treatment depends on the severity of the ingrown toenail. In less severe cases, home treatment may be adequate. Soaking the affected foot in warm water and gently lifting the nail from the skin with a piece of clean cotton can help. In more severe cases, you may need to use topical or oral antibiotics to treat an infection. Surgical removal of the ingrown toenail may be required if more conservative treatments fail. 

Ingrown toenails may be prevented by wearing well-fitted shoes and properly trimming the toenails. Toenails should be trimmed straight across and not too short when using nail clippers. 

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

Read more about ingrown toenails

Monday, 12 April 2021 12:00

What is Practice Accreditation?

The Royal College of Podiatry in the UK administers a Practice Accreditation Scheme. Early on Stuart Berry and the team first led our sister office in Weybridge, Surrey, UK to practice accreditation back in 2005 and since growing and expanding the office in Niagara Falls Ontario, has led this office to Practice Accreditation also.

The aim of the Practice Accreditation Scheme is to help assure best practice, demonstrate a high standard of care to patients and to assure that correct protocols and procedures are followed to practice safely and effectively within the profession.

As an Accredited Practice, we have been able to demonstrate that:

  • We adhere to set guidelines.
  • All our decontamination processes and infection control are in place.
  • We adhere to benchmarked clinical standards.
  • We audit notes and that we have peer review scheme in place.
  • We comply with confidentiality and privacy benchmarks.
  • We have a clear fee structure.
  • We have a clear fee structure.
  • We undertake onward referral to other specialisms including vascular, podiatric surgery, orthopaedic surgery, GP, physiotherapy, Endocrinology as needed.
  • And many more.

For further information, please visit The Royal College of Podiatry’s website on Accreditation here: https://cop.org.uk/membership/membership-benefits/practice-accreditation

family feet 2Some foot conditions are not only experienced by adults, but also by children. Foot conditions that are common in children include ingrown toenails, plantar warts, flat feet, and heel pain. Ingrown toenails occur when the edge of a toenail grows into the surrounding skin. This can cause pain and become infected when left untreated. Plantar warts are warts that grow on the bottom of the feet due to a viral infection. They typically appear as a circular area of thickened skin with black dots in the center, and can be painful when pressure is applied to them. Flat feet are feet that have minimal or no arches in the middle of the sole of the foot. Flat feet typically don’t cause symptoms, but may require treatment if your child complains of foot or leg pain, or difficulty walking. Heel pain in children can have a variety of underlying causes, including plantar fasciitis and Sever’s disease. Sever’s disease typically occurs in the growth plate of the heel and affects children who are active and 8 to 14 years of age. If your child complains of any type foot pain, it is recommended that you take them to a chiropodist for proper treatment. 

If your child is experiencing foot or ankle pain, please consult with one of our chiropodists of The Footcare Centre. Our chiropodists will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

Common Causes of Foot Pain in Children

While children can experience many of the same foot problems as adults do, some foot problems may be more common during childhood. 

Causes of foot pain in children can include:

  • Deformities that are present from birth, such as flat feet or clubfoot
  • Sever’s disease, which is an inflammation of the growth plate in the heel bone
  • Various sports injuries, such as sprains and fractures 
  • Ingrown toenails
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Plantar warts

Prevention

It is important to look after the health of children’s feet in order to prevent future problems from arising. Keep your child’s feet clean and dry, trim their toenails regularly, ensure their shoes fit properly, and keep a watchful eye on any symptoms of foot pain, such as limping. If you notice any symptoms or if your child complains of foot pain, a chiropodist can help. 

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

Read more about children's foot health

Thursday, 01 April 2021 22:36

Symptoms of Poor Circulation in the Feet

circulation feetPoor circulation refers to impaired in blood flow. This can happen in any part of the body, but is particularly common in the feet. If you have poor foot circulation, you may experience a variety of symptoms. These can include cold feet, numbness, tingling, or a pins and needles sensation, swelling, skin discoloration, pain or aching, a feeling of heaviness in the feet, and increased fatigue. Poor circulation can have many causes. It becomes more common as we age, but can also be brought about by a sedentary lifestyle or obesity. Poor foot circulation is also associated with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, deep vein thrombosis, atherosclerosis, peripheral artery disease, and venous insufficiency. If you have poor circulation in your feet, a chiropodist can help you manage this condition. 

Poor Circulation

When blood flow to a specific part of the body is reduced, you may experience symptoms of poor circulation. Poor circulation is most common in your extremities, like your legs and feet. Please consult with one of our chiropodists of The Footcare Centre. Our chiropodists will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment. 

Causes

Poor circulation isn’t a condition in itself. Instead, it results from other health issues. Therefore, it’s important to treat the underlying causes:

  • Peripheral artery disease (PAD)
  • Diabetes 
  • Blood clots
  • Varicose veins
  • Obesity
  • Raynaud’s disease 

Symptoms

Symptoms of poor circulation may include: 

  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Throbbing or stinging pain in limbs
  • Pain
  • Muscle Cramps

Diagnosis

A chiropodist will perform a physical exam to detect pain and swelling, as well as an antibodies blood test to detect inflammatory conditions, such as Raynaud’s disease. It’s important to disclose any known family history of poor circulation and any related diseases. A blood sugar test, blood pressure test, ultrasound or CT scan, may also be performed.

Treatment

Treatments for poor circulation depend on what is causing it. Compression socks may be used to reduce pain and swelling. An exercise program may be recommended to improve circulation. Various medications may be prescribed to manage underlying conditions that may contribute to poor circulation.  

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

Read more about poor circulation

Connect With Us