Items filtered by date: August 2022
A rare foot condition that is generally identified after birth is known as clubfoot. Typically, one foot is affected in babies that are born with this condition, and in some cases, both feet have been afflicted. It is defined as an ailment that turns the foot sharply inward while the toes point towards the other foot. Children who have clubfoot try to maintain balance and can wobble as they walk. This condition often develops from genetic reasons, and it may be more prevalent among children whose mothers smoke or drink during their pregnancy. Many patients choose to manipulate the foot by performing specific stretches, as this may help to guide the foot into alignment. An effective treatment method is known as the Ponseti technique, and this involves putting the affected foot in a cast after it has been stretched into a normal position. This can be helpful in keeping the foot in the correct position until it is fully healed. If the clubfoot is severe or corrective treatment does not yield the desired results, surgery may be necessary. This can be beneficial in putting the bones, tendons, joints, and ligaments into their normal positions. If you would like additional information about clubfoot, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can answer any questions you may have.
Congenital foot problems require immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM of Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Congenital foot problems are deformities affecting the feet, toes, and/or ankles that children are born with. Some of these conditions have a genetic cause while others just happen. Some specific foot ailments that children may be born with include clubfeet, polydactyly/macrodactyly, and cleft foot. There are several other foot anomalies that can occur congenitally. What all of these conditions have in common is that a child may experience difficulty walking or performing everyday activities, as well as trouble finding footwear that fits their foot deformity. Some of these conditions are more serious than others. Consulting with a podiatrist as early as possible will help in properly diagnosing a child’s foot condition while getting the necessary treatment underway.
What are Causes of Congenital Foot Problem?
A congenital foot problem is one that happens to a child at birth. These conditions can be caused by a genetic predisposition, developmental or positional abnormalities during gestation, or with no known cause.
What are Symptoms of Congenital Foot Problems?
Symptoms vary by the congenital condition. Symptoms may consist of the following:
- Clubfoot, where tendons are shortened, bones are shaped differently, and the Achilles tendon is tight, causing the foot to point in and down. It is also possible for the soles of the feet to face each other.
- Polydactyly, which usually consists of a nubbin or small lump of tissue without a bone, a toe that is partially formed but has no joints, or an extra toe.
- Vertical talus, where the talus bone forms in the wrong position causing other bones in the foot to line up improperly, the front of the foot to point up, and the bottom of the foot to stiffen, with no arch, and to curve out.
- Tarsal coalition, when there is an abnormal connection of two or more bones in the foot leading to severe, rigid flatfoot.
- Cleft foot, where there are missing toes, a V-shaped cleft, and other anatomical differences.
- Macrodactyly, when the toes are abnormally large due to overgrowth of the underlying bone or soft tissue.
Treatment and Prevention
While there is nothing one can do to prevent congenital foot problems, raising awareness and receiving neonatal screenings are important. Early detection by taking your child to a podiatrist leads to the best outcome possible.
If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can lead to more serious concerns, such as an infection. Knowing proper nail care can help in the prevention of an ingrown toenail. Give us a call, and get treated!
There is a nerve called the plantar digital nerve which is located between the toes. Morton’s neuroma is a condition that occurs when that nerve is irritated or squeezed and can happen from wearing shoes that do not have enough room in the toe area. When this nerve is inflamed the pressure is felt in the ball of the foot. The nerve can become thickened, and this ailment gradually becomes painful. Some of the symptoms that are associated with Morton’s neuroma can include the sensation of stepping on a pebble, the foot can feel numb, and the pain can travel between the third and fourth toes. This is a common condition among ballet dancers because of the style of dance they enjoy. There may also be existing medical conditions that can trigger Morton’s neuroma like hammertoe, bunions, and flat feet. If you have any of these symptoms please confer with a podiatrist who can guide you toward correct treatment options, which may include surgery for permanent removal of the nerve.
Morton’s neuroma is a very uncomfortable condition to live with. If you think you have Morton’s neuroma, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM of Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor will attend to all of your foot care needs and answer any of your related questions.
Morton's neuroma is a painful foot condition that commonly affects the areas between the second and third or third and fourth toe, although other areas of the foot are also susceptible. Morton’s neuroma is caused by an inflamed nerve in the foot that is being squeezed and aggravated by surrounding bones.
What Increases the Chances of Having Morton’s Neuroma?
- Ill-fitting high heels or shoes that add pressure to the toe or foot
- Jogging, running or any sport that involves constant impact to the foot
- Flat feet, bunions, and any other foot deformities
Morton’s neuroma is a very treatable condition. Orthotics and shoe inserts can often be used to alleviate the pain on the forefront of the feet. In more severe cases, corticosteroids can also be prescribed. In order to figure out the best treatment for your neuroma, it’s recommended to seek the care of a podiatrist who can diagnose your condition and provide different treatment options.
Many individuals earn their living by working as food servers, waiters, or waitresses. If you work as a food server, you are no doubt familiar with the fact that food servers spend the majority of the day working on their feet. Whether you are walking to and from the kitchen or carrying heavy dishes of food to tables, you spend a significant amount of the work day putting pressure on your feet. If you are not diligent about maintaining a foot care routine, you might be setting yourself up for a foot injury or condition. First, ensure that you are wearing the right kind of footwear on the job. Instead of wearing shoes with high heels that can increase your risk of falling during your shift, wear shoes with low, wide heels to provide stability. Second, since food servers spend such long amounts of time working on their feet, be sure to take the time you need to relax and pamper your feet. You may choose to give yourself a foot massage or to receive one professionally. These foot massages can relax muscles and ligaments in the feet, preventing tightening that could lead to injuries. Third, it is a good idea to be diligent about keeping your feet clean. For example, you might wash your feet to remove damaging bacteria, and pat them dry completely. Food servers ought to take the health of their feet seriously. If you work in the food service industry, contact a podiatrist to understand the best way to care for your feet.
While working on the feet, it is important to take the proper care of them. For more information about working on your feet, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM from Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.
Working on Your Feet
Standing on your feet for long periods of time can cause stress and pain in your feet. Your whole body may experience change in terms of posture, back pain, bunions, callouses and or plantar warts. There are ways to avoid these conditions with proper foot care, smart choices and correct posture.
Negative heeled shoe – Choosing this shoe type places the heel slightly lower than the ball of the foot. These are great for overall foot health. Find shoes that fit you correctly.
Go barefoot – Our feet were not designed to be enclosed for all hours of the day. Try to periodically expose your feet to air.
Foot Exercises – Performing simple exercises, incorporating yoga and doing stretches are beneficial. This will allow increased blood flow to the area and muscles of the foot.
Achilles tendon – Stretching the foot out flat on the floor will relax the calf muscles and tendon. These exercises can be performed almost anywhere. Make sure you add these exercises to your daily regimen.
With a little bit of this information and knowing more about foot health, you will notice changes. Foot stretches and proper footwear will help with pain and prevent further issues.
A condition called juvenile plantar dermatosis is a fancy term for dry skin on the feet. It usually affects children between the ages of 3 and 14 and is most prevalent around the age of 8. It rarely affects adults and diminishes in children when they reach puberty. Causes include friction from the sole rubbing inside the shoe, wearing synthetic shoes or shoes that do not “breathe,” and excessive sweating followed by rapid drying that leads to cracks in the skin. With plantar dermatosis, the soles of the feet typically become red, shiny, itchy, or sore and take on a glazed appearance. It usually affects both feet starting with the big toe and results in painful fissures, cracking, and scaling. For this reason, it may be confused with athlete’s foot or eczema. Treatment includes wearing shoes that fit well and are not made of leather or plastic, avoiding synthetic socks, and applying moisturizing cream daily. To find out more about plantar dermatosis in your child, please consult a podiatrist who can rule out other causes and prescribe the appropriate medication.
The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM of Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy
- Make sure their shoes fit properly
- Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
- Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
- Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
- Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
- Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
- Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
- Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.
There is a strong band of ligament, known as the plantar fascia, on the bottom of the feet. It attaches to the heel bone and stretches forward, fanning out and dividing into 5 digital bands which connect with the base of the toes. The plantar fascia is integral to the foot’s biomechanics, helping to form and support the arch and absorb shock. Because the plantar fascia is constantly being stretched while walking, running, jumping, standing, dancing, etc., it can become damaged from overuse. This damage can include micro-tears in the tissue, causing inflammation and pain. This is known as plantar fasciitis. Long distance runners, people who are obese, or who have a tight Achilles tendon are more prone to developing plantar fasciitis. People who wear shoes or sneakers with insufficient arch support are also more prone to developing this condition. If you have pain in your heel that seems to be at its worst first thing in the morning, have your feet examined by a podiatrist.
Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM from Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
What Is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
- Excessive running
- Non-supportive shoes
- Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia
How Can It Be Treated?
- Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
- Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
- Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel
While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.