Monday, 26 August 2019 00:00

Possible Causes of Ingrown Toenails

There are several reasons why patients may develop ingrown toenails. These can include wearing shoes that do not fit correctly, toenails that have been trimmed improperly, or possibly from an injury that has happened to the toe. Some of the symptoms that are associated with this condition can include pain and discomfort, especially when shoes are worn, in addition to redness and swelling on the side of the nail. If ingrown toenails are left untreated, the nail may become infected, and pus may drain from the affected area. Relief may be found if the toe is soaked in warm water, which can help to soften the skin surrounding the nail. For severe infections, it is wise to seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can offer treatment options, which may include using splints that can help to protect the skin from the nail.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart of Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

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

Read more about Ingrown Toenail Care
Monday, 19 August 2019 00:00

Obesity and Heel Pain

Many people suffer from heel pain, including people who are obese. Mild relief may be found when exercises and foot stretches are frequently performed. People who are overweight may have challenges in practicing a regular exercise regime, and this may be a result of the additional weight the body endures. There are aerobic exercises that can be performed, which can aid in weight loss. If traditional forms of exercise are difficult to partake in, there are other methods to accomplish a weight loss goal. These can include cycling and swimming. Additionally, it is helpful to reduce the amount of calories that are eaten, as this can be beneficial in attaining exercise goals. If you are overweight and experiencing heel pain, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward relief.

The more you weigh, the harder your feet must work to support your body. If you’re an obese individual and are concerned about your feet, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Obesity and Your Feet

People who are overweight are putting more pressure on their ankles, knees, and hips as well as their feet. This unfortunately can lead to variety of different issues.

Problems & Complications Stemming from Obesity

  • When the body is overweight, it tries to compensate by changing the way that it moves. An obese person may lean forward and put extra weight on the wrong part of the foot. This puts unnecessary stress on the feet.
  • Obese people are also more likely to develop type II diabetes which is a condition that causes a lot of foot problems. People with diabetes often don’t feel the cuts and sores that they may have on their feet, which can lead to more complicated and severe issues.
  • Plantar fasciitis is another foot condition that can be caused by obesity. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue along the bottom of the foot, which causes pain and stiffness while walking and climbing stairs.

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

Read more about Obesity and the Feet
Monday, 12 August 2019 00:00

What Causes Gout?

Elevated uric acid levels in the bloodstream may lead to a painful condition that is known as gout. It typically affects the joints in the big toe, and symptoms generally consist of swelling, redness, and severe pain and discomfort. It can occur as a result of crystals that form and lodge in the joints, which is caused by eating foods that have high purine levels. These foods can include red meat, shellfish, and excess amounts of alcohol. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which can consist of extracting fluid from the affected joint that contains the crystals, proper treatment can begin. This can include taking medication which can lower uric acid levels. There are methods that can be implemented which may prevent gout attacks from occurring. It is beneficial to incorporate healthy eating habits into your daily routine, and limiting the amount of alcohol that is consumed. If you have frequent gout attacks, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can treat this condition.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor 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 our office located in Bethlehem, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Gout
Monday, 05 August 2019 00:00

What Causes Ankle Pain?

There are different forms of ankle pain, and they can occur for a variety of different reasons. For example, an ankle sprain is a common injury that can happen as a result of falling and twisting the ankle. The ligaments can tear or stretch, and this generally causes severe pain and discomfort. If the joints surrounding the ankle become inflamed, a condition known as arthritis may be present. The most common forms of this condition are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Additionally, gout is a painful condition that affects the big toe primarily, but can affect the ankle as well. It can occur as a result of specific foods that are eaten. Some patients develop tendonitis in the ankle, which can cause difficulty in moving the lower portion of the foot. If you are experiencing ankle pain for any reason, it is advised to speak to a podiatrist who can guide you toward beginning the correct treatment.

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.

Causes

The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms

Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.

Diagnosis

Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

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

 

Read more about Ankle Pain
Wednesday, 31 July 2019 00:00

Wounds That Don't Heal Need to Be Checked

Your feet are covered most of the day. If you're diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often a sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

When it comes to barefoot running, the consequence is in the amount rather than the activity itself. Barefoot running should consistently be treated like a new activity, which means start with a small dose and then progressively increase the distance each time you run. This allows for the body to get better acquainted with the activity and creates a low risk environment. On the other hand, if you don’t pace yourself, then you will become more prone to injuries. It is considered easier to gain proper running form from being barefoot compared to wearing shoes. This is because when you are barefoot, you aren’t prone to some aspects of poor form that present themselves while wearing shoes. When running barefoot, it is easier to take shorter strides in order to reduce impact forces on the lower legs. The most important part of barefoot running is to run by effort and feel rather than pace. This is due to the purpose of barefoot running being to improve efficiency, get stronger and to reduce your risk for injury. It is important when taking up barefoot running that you start off at a comfortable pace, and then slowly build yourself up. If you find yourself interested in this style of running, you should consult with a podiatrist to see if it is a good option for you.

 

Barefoot running has its own share of benefits and disadvantages. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Barefoot Running

The Impact of Barefoot Running

  • Running without shoes changes the motion of your running, as most running is done by landing on the heel of the feet.
  • Running barefoot requires a different way of running; the landing is done on the front part of the feet.

The Advantages of Barefoot Running

  • When running and landing on the front feet, the impact on the feet and ankle is reduced; this can reduce stress injuries.
  • It strengthens muscles in the feet, ankles and lower legs.
  • Balance of the body is improved, and there is a greater sensory input from the feet to the rest of the body.

The Drawbacks of Barefoot Running

  • No protection while running, makes it likely that runners will land on sharp objects and scrapes, bruises and cuts on the feet will result.
  • Blisters may form.
  • Possibility of plantar fascia problems.
  • Risk of getting Achilles tendonitis.

So, what can runners do to make barefoot running safe? It’s best to make a slow transition from running shoes to barefoot running. Once the feet begin to adjust, try walking, then jogging and gradually increasing the distance. Minimalist running shoes may also be an option.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our office located in Bethlehem, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Why Many Are Making the Switch to Barefoot Running

There are many different types of ankle pain that are caused by a variety of factors. Stiffness of the ankle joints is a common symptom in a condition that is known as osteoarthritis. It is known to be a degenerative joint disease, and affects millions of people in the United States. Many people will suffer from an ankle sprain at some point in their lives. This is the result of damaged ligaments surrounding the ankle, and typically occurs as a result of twisting the ankle the wrong way. A strain to the ankle can occur when the muscles and tendons have become overstretched. The symptoms that are often associated with ankle strains can include reduced flexibility, pain and discomfort around the affected joint, and swelling. If you have any type of ankle pain, it is strongly advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can properly treat a variety of conditions.

Ankle pain can be caused by a number of problems and may be potentially serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.

Causes

The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Bursitis
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms

Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.

Diagnosis

Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

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

 

Read more about Ankle Pain
Monday, 15 July 2019 00:00

Different Types of Toe Fractures

The toes play a significant role in maintaining balance in the body while standing, in addition to pursuing walking and running activities. The bones are small, and can easily break if something heavy is dropped on one of them, or if it bangs against a piece of furniture. There are noticeable symptoms of a broken toe. These often consist of immediate pain, discomfort, redness, and the affected area may appear to be bruised and swollen. Research has shown there are several different types of breaks. A traumatic fracture consists of a sudden break, and this can occur from falling, or severely stubbing the toe. Additionally, if extended periods of time are spent in running activities, the toes may endure stress fractures. This can be a result of a gradual weakening of the bones in the toes.  A fracture is considered to be severe if a bone is protruding from the skin, and an infection may occur from the open wound. If you have broken your toe, it is suggested to seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly diagnose and treat this condition.

Broken toes may cause a lot of pain and should be treated as soon as possible. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is a Broken Toe?

A broken toe occurs when one or more of the toe bones of the foot are broken after an injury. Injuries such as stubbing your toe or dropping a heavy object on it may cause a toe fracture.

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Swelling
  • Pain (with/without wearing shoes)
  • Stiffness
  • Nail Injury

Although the injured toe should be monitored daily, it is especially important to have a podiatrist look at your toe if you have severe symptoms. Some of these symptoms include worsening or new pain that is not relieved with medication, sores, redness, or open wounds near the toe.

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

Read more about What to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 08 July 2019 00:00

Flat Feet May Cause Foot Pain

The medical condition that is known as flat feet can also be referred to as fallen arches. Patients who have this condition have little or no arch in their foot, and this can cause discomfort while engaging in daily activities. This can be a result of strained muscles and ligaments, and most likely will affect the inside of the ankle. There are several reasons why flat feet may develop. These can include genetic factors, medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, or if an injury has occurred to the foot or ankle. Pregnant women may develop flat feet, which is often the result of additional weight that is gained during this time. If you have flat feet and are experiencing chronic foot pain, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can provide you with proper treatment options.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

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

Read more about Flatfoot
Monday, 01 July 2019 00:00

Who is at Risk for Heel Spurs?

A heel spur is caused by a calcium deposit that forms on the bottom of the heel. While many people experience no symptoms, heel spurs can be painful. Pain levels for heel spurs often vary throughout the day. Some people are more prone to getting heel spurs than others. If you have walking abnormalities that put excess pressure on the heel area, you may be at risk for this condition. Runners and joggers are known to get heel spurs, as well. Another group of people who may experience heel spurs are those who are overweight. Many times, heel spurs arise in conjunction with plantar fasciitis. If you have plantar fasciitis, you may experience heel spurs if you have diabetes, do short bursts of exercise, or spend much of the day on your feet. If you think you may have a heel spur, it is suggested that you contact a podiatrist.

Heel spurs can be incredibly painful and sometimes may make you unable to participate in physical activities. To get medical care for your heel spurs, contact Dr. Edwin S. Hart from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will do everything possible to treat your condition.

Heels Spurs

Heel spurs are formed by calcium deposits on the back of the foot where the heel is. This can also be caused by small fragments of bone breaking off one section of the foot, attaching onto the back of the foot. Heel spurs can also be bone growth on the back of the foot and may grow in the direction of the arch of the foot.

Older individuals usually suffer from heel spurs and pain sometimes intensifies with age. One of the main condition's spurs are related to is plantar fasciitis.

Pain

The pain associated with spurs is often because of weight placed on the feet. When someone is walking, their entire weight is concentrated on the feet. Bone spurs then have the tendency to affect other bones and tissues around the foot. As the pain continues, the feet will become tender and sensitive over time.

Treatments

There are many ways to treat heel spurs. If one is suffering from heel spurs in conjunction with pain, there are several methods for healing. Medication, surgery, and herbal care are some options.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our office located in Bethlehem, PA . We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about How to Treat Heel Spurs
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