Posts for category: Foot Conditions
When you bring your child into the podiatrist’s office, the specialist will examine your child’s walk and gait. They will also observe how your child stands to see if their feet turn inwards or to look at how your child’s hips are positioned. Your podiatrist may also recommend imaging tests to look at the alignment of the bones.
While a pediatrician may be the first person to look at and diagnose your child’s pigeon toes, a pediatric podiatrist is going to be able to provide your little one with the specialized treatment and care they need.
Most parents are relieved to find out that many children grow out of mild to moderate forms of pigeon toes. While this may take a few years, this is nothing to worry about and children won’t require special treatment or care.
However, if this issue is detected in your infant, they may need to wear a cast on the feet to fix the alignment before your child begins walking. A podiatrist can also show you a series of stretches and massages that can help the bones grow into the proper alignment.
If your child’s pigeon toes are still causing them issues by 10 years old, then you may want to talk with your podiatrist about whether surgery may be necessary to correct these bone alignment issues.
- Seek immediate medical attention (head to your local ER)
- You may need a tetanus shot if it’s been more than 10 years since your last shot
- Schedule an appointment with your podiatrist within 24 hours of the injury
- Your podiatrist will provide you with a variety of care instructions to keep it clean and disinfected (make sure to follow all of these instructions)
- New or worsening pain
- Skin that’s warm to the touch
- Pain that occurs immediately after an injury or accident
- Pain that is directly above a bone
- Pain that is worse with movement
- Bruising and severe swelling
- A cracking sound at the moment of injury
- A visible deformity or bump
- Can’t put weight on the injured foot
The symptoms of a sprain are far less severe. You can often put weight on the injured foot with a sprain; however, you may notice some slight pain and stiffness. You may also have heard a popping sound at the moment of the injury with a sprain, while a broken bone often produces a cracking sound. The pain associated with a sprain will also be above soft tissue rather than bone. A podiatrist will perform an X-ray to be able to determine if you are dealing with a break or a sprain.
Rest is key to allowing an injury, particularly a fracture, to heal properly. Along with rest, your doctor may also recommend either an over-the-counter or prescription-strength pain reliever, depending on the severity of your fracture. Those with more moderate to severe fractures may require a special boot, brace, or splint. Those with more severe fractures may need to wear a cast and use crutches, so they can avoid putting any weight on the foot.
- You experience pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the joints of the foot, particularly the toes
- You experience aching feet, particularly after activity or long periods of standing
- Some parts of your foot may feel oddly warm to the touch or may emanate heat while the rest of the foot feels normal
- The joints of the toes and ankles may swell
What does RA do to the feet and ankles?
Along with painful joints and stiffness, you may also notice other changes to your feet over time. Some of these changes include,
- Hammertoes and claw toes
- Circulation issues (e.g. atherosclerosis; Raynaud’s phenomena)
Since RA is not curable, your podiatrist will focus on crafting a treatment plan that will help to alleviate your symptoms and slow the progression of the disease to prevent severe and irreparable joint damage. Prescription medications known as disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) are biologics that can reduce inflammation and prevent the progression of the disease.
Of course, there are also lifestyle changes you can make along with taking prescription medication that can also ease symptoms,
- Warm soaks
- Custom insoles or orthotics
- Pain relievers
- Stretching exercises for the feet
- Steroid injections (for targeting severe inflammation)
Most people with RA will eventually develop foot and ankle problems, which is why it’s important to have a podiatrist on your team that can help you manage your RA effectively.
Dealing with a hammertoe? Here’s what to do about it.
It’s easy for our Boise, ID, podiatrists to be able to spot hammertoes through a simple examination. After all, the classic characteristic is a toe that is bent downward. In more serious cases the toe may look almost claw-like and be unable to straighten. If you think you may have a hammertoe, here’s what you should know,
Hammertoes are progressive
A hammertoe will not go away (unless it’s surgically repaired). In fact, this deformity (just like bunions) can get worse over time. This is why it’s important to 1. Catch a hammertoe early on when you’re still able to straighten the joint and 2. Start incorporating conservative measures and treatment options early to slow its progress.
Hammertoes typically affects the small toes
Just as a bunion typically affects the large toe joint, a hammertoe is another common foot deformity that often affects the joint of the small toes. Hammertoes often result from a muscle imbalance within the feet. By turning to your podiatrist for regular checkups, we can provide ways to prevent hammertoes from occurring such as creating prescription orthotics to correct the imbalance.
Hammertoes can be relieved through simple measures
It’s important that you are doing what you can to prevent the hammertoe from getting worse, but it is comforting to know that most discomfort can be alleviated through simple home care and lifestyle modifications. Some ways to treat a hammertoe include,
- Strapping or tapping the toe to realign the joint
- Performing stretching and strengthening exercises to improve the muscles of the foot
- Wearing the proper footwear with wide toe boxes and material that is breathable and gives (e.g. leather)
- Icing and pain relievers to tackle pain and swelling
- Applying a non-medicated protective padding to the toe to prevent a callus from developing
Know the signs of a hammertoe
In the very early stages, it may be difficult to tell whether you are dealing with a hammertoe. You may only notice a small amount of redness, inflammation, swelling, pain or discomfort that may get worse when wearing shoes. As the joint deformity gets worse the toe will start to bend downward. You may also notice a corn or callus develop on or between the toes.
If you are concerned about hammertoes, our Boise, Nampa and Meridian, ID, podiatrists can help. Call Idaho Foot & Ankle Associates at (208) 327-0627, (208) 463-1660 or (208) 888-9876 to schedule an evaluation.