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Blog - Foot Doctor, Chambersburg, Waynesboro and McConnellsburg, PA

Tuesday, 03 August 2021 00:00

How High Heels Can Damage the Feet

Wearing high heels can be stylish, but wearing them too often may have severe long term impacts on the feet. While wearing high heels, the ankles are forced to bend forward and essentially make it like the wearer is standing on their tip toes. This can lead to potential problems like restricting blood circulation, or shortening of the calf muscles as well as the Achilles tendon. High heels with a narrow toe box can lead to other problems too, such as bunions. Because of the stress that these shoes put on the body, osteoarthritis is yet another condition that may result from wearing high heels frequently. Not only do high heels have an impact on the feet, but high heels can lead to concerns with your back and knees as well. If you are experiencing any problems with your feet due to high heels, please consult with your local podiatrist. A podiatrist will be able to treat any foot condition that may have developed, as well as provide shoe inserts or orthotics, and make recommendations on other stylish shoes that can be healthier for your feet.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

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

Read more about Why High Heels Are Not Ideal for Healthy Feet
Tuesday, 27 July 2021 00:00

How and Where Plantar Warts Occur

When the outer layer of skin on the sole of the feet comes in contact with the human papilloma virus, thickened growths called plantar warts can develop. The virus—which can lurk in public showers, pools, and locker rooms—enters through tiny breaks in the skin on the bottom of feet. These flat, rough masses sometimes have tiny black “dots” in the center, which are actually tiny blood vessels. They can be uncomfortable at times—especially if they occur on weight-bearing areas of the feet and toes. While verrucas can often heal on their own, they can be stubborn, and you may want to see a podiatrist to help get rid of them.

  

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

Read more about All About Plantar Warts
Tuesday, 20 July 2021 00:00

Are Cracked Heels Dangerous?

Cracked heels are also be known as heel fissures. They are usually caused by excessively dry skin. While cracked heels are often a purely cosmetic problem, they can become quite painful if the cracks are deep. In rare cases, the cracks may be deep and severely painful, can bleed, and can raise the risk of an infection. But even small cracks on the heels can allow tiny fungi or viruses to get in and infect the skin of the feet, causing athlete’s foot or plantar warts to develop. If you have cracked heels, home treatment methods, such as soaking the feet in warm water, exfoliating the heels with a pumice stone, and applying a thick moisturizer, can be a great help. However, if your cracked heels are deep, painful, or showing signs of infection, or if you have diabetes, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist for treatment. 

If the skin on your feet starts to crack, you may want to see a podiatrist to find treatment. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

It is important to moisturize your cracked heels in order to prevent pain, bleeding, and infection. The reason cracked heels form is because the skin on the foot is too dry to support the immense pressure placed on them. When the foot expands, the dry skin on the foot begins to split.

Ways to Help Heal Them

  • Invest in a good foot cream
  • Try Using Petroleum Jelly
  • Ease up on Soaps
  • Drink Plenty of Water

Ways to Prevent Cracked Heels

  • Moisturize After Showering
  • Skip a Shower
  • Keep Shower Water Lukewarm
  • Don’t Scrub Your Feet

If you are unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels, seek guidance from a podiatrist. Your doctor will help you with any questions or information you may need. 

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

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Monday, 19 July 2021 00:00

Do Your Child's Feet Hurt?

Have your child's feet been examined lately? Healthy feet are happy feet. If your child is complaining of foot pain, it may be a sign of underlying problems.

Tuesday, 13 July 2021 00:00

Why Does the Side of My Foot Hurt?

There are many reasons why the side of your foot may be in pain. Often, seemingly minor injuries, like a stress fracture in one of the bones of the foot or ankle, can produce pain on the side of the foot. Ankle sprains, cuboid syndrome, and peroneal tendonitis can occur due to damage to the ligaments, bones, or tendons of the feet and ankles, respectively. Deformities and skin conditions, such as bunions, corns, and calluses may also be to blame. A congenital condition called tarsal coalition can result in foot pain, fatigue, flat feet, and a dysfunctional gait. Arthritis, both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, is also a potential cause of foot pain. If you have pain on the side of your foot, don’t wait for it to go away on its own, as untreated pain can often become chronic. Instead, seek the care of a podiatrist, who can diagnose and treat your condition.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Causes

Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Bunions
  • Hammertoes
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Bone Spurs
  • Corns
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ingrown Toenails
  • Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
  • Flat Feet
  • Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
  • And more

Diagnosis

To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.

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

Read more about Foot Pain
Tuesday, 06 July 2021 00:00

The Three Stages of an Ingrown Toenail

Ingrown toenails occur when the edge of a nail grows into the surrounding skin rather than over it. An ingrown toenail can be classified into one of three categories based on its severity. A Stage 1 ingrown toenail is characterized by the end of the toe becoming red and mildly swollen, warm, or painful to the touch, but with no pus or drainage. A Stage 2 ingrown toenail is characterized by increased redness, swelling, and pain, white or yellow-colored pus or drainage from the area, and infection. A Stage 3 ingrown toenail will usually have even more severe redness and swelling, be very painful, and be accompanied by an overgrowth of skin around the toenail. More severe infection and a fever may follow. If you frequently experience ingrown toenails, or if your toenail is showing signs of infection, it is suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist as soon as possible. 

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Steven Schwartz 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 offices located in Chambersburg, Waynesboro, and Mcconnellsburg, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Ingrown Toenails
Thursday, 01 July 2021 00:00

Causes of Cuboid Syndrome

There are several bones each foot is composed of. The shape of the cuboid bone is square and it is one of seven tarsal bones in the foot. It is found on the outside of each foot, and it links the metatarsals to the heel bone. When the ligaments that surrounds this bone are injured, it may lead to cuboid syndrome. This is a condition that can cause pain and discomfort, and it is often difficult to walk. It can be common among patients who participate in running and jumping sporting activities. Additionally, ballet dancers may be prone to this ailment, and this can be a result of the continual pressure the cuboid bone endures. Relief may be found when the affected foot is taped, and this can help to provide the stability that is needed to help accelerate the healing process. If you have pain on the outside of your foot, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can determine what the cause of pain is, and recommend the right treatment options for you.

Cuboid syndrome, also known as cuboid subluxation, occurs when the joints and ligaments near the cuboid bone in the foot become torn. If you have cuboid syndrome, consult with Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Cuboid syndrome is a common cause of lateral foot pain, which is pain on the outside of the foot. The condition may happen suddenly due to an ankle sprain, or it may develop slowly overtime from repetitive tension through the bone and surrounding structures.

Causes

The most common causes of cuboid syndrome include:

  • Injury – The most common cause of this ailment is an ankle sprain.
  • Repetitive Strain – Tension placed through the peroneus longus muscle from repetitive activities such as jumping and running may cause excessive traction on the bone causing it to sublux.
  • Altered Foot Biomechanics – Most people suffering from cuboid subluxation have flat feet.

Symptoms

A common symptom of cuboid syndrome is pain along the outside of the foot which can be felt in the ankle and toes. This pain may create walking difficulties and may cause those with the condition to walk with a limp.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of cuboid syndrome is often difficult, and it is often misdiagnosed. X-rays, MRIs and CT scans often fail to properly show the cuboid subluxation. Although there isn’t a specific test used to diagnose cuboid syndrome, your podiatrist will usually check if pain is felt while pressing firmly on the cuboid bone of your foot.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are ice therapy, rest, exercise, taping, and orthotics.

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

 

Read more about All About Cuboid Syndrome
Saturday, 19 June 2021 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.

Tuesday, 22 June 2021 00:00

Why Are My Feet Always Cold?

It’s normal to “have cold feet” before a big event - but what if your feet are frequently, literally cold? Having feet that feel cold or are cold to the touch, for reasons that are not due to your footwear or the current weather conditions, can be indicative of several foot problems. Often cold feet are a symptom of poor or reduced blood flow to the feet. This can be caused by various disorders, such as peripheral artery disease or varicose veins. Diabetes, which can cause nerve damage in the feet and affect your circulation, may also be to blame for your cold feet. If you frequently experience cold feet, this is a symptom worth mentioning to your podiatrist. Other changes to your feet, such as the appearance of slow or poorly healing foot wounds, joint pain, and skin discoloration, thickening, or rash, should also be noted. A podiatrist can help you maintain the health of your feet.   

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dr. Steven Schwartz of Pennsylvania. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

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

Read more about Causes Symptoms and Treatment for Poor Circulation in the Feet

Research has indicated that elderly people may benefit from having assistive devices installed throughout the home. These can be helpful in preventing falls, which can cause serious injuries. Additionally, falling may invoke a loss of independence, as the fear of falling can precede everyday activities. Some of the safety measures that can be used in an elderly person’s household can include grab bars in the shower and toilet area, a non-slip bath mat, and improved lighting. Additionally, it may be beneficial to use a walker or cane while inside the home, and a stair lift may be needed for seniors that reside in a home with stairs. Falling can be debilitating to the feet and can cause accomplishing daily activities to temporarily cease. If you would like to know more information about how falling can affect the feet, and learn about effective preventive strategies, please speak with a podiatrist.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with Dr. Steven Schwartz from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

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

Read more about Falls Prevention
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