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Posts for category: Common Foot Conditions

By Foot First Podiatry Center
December 07, 2018
Tags: Ingrown Toenail  

An ingrown toenail sounds like a minor problem, and in many cases it is, but if left untreated, it can cause a serious wound or infection. Certain patients are more likely than others to have recurring problems with ingrown toenails. If you have a stubborn ingrown nail that is starting to feel painful, is swelling, or has broken the skin, it’s important that you promptly seek help from podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha at Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN.

What Causes an Ingrown Toenail?
Normally, a toenail grows above the top layer of skin, not coming into to contact with the skin’s surface. In the case of an ingrown toenail, the sharp nail instead digs into the skin as it grows. If it isn’t clipped or safely removed, the skin will break, start to bleed, and possibly become infected if it isn’t treated. Ingrown toenails are common in people who have fleshy toes and poorly structured feet. When you cut your nails too short or wear tight-fitting shoes, you are more likely to have problems with ingrown toenails.

Safe Treatment for an Ingrown Toenail
When a toenail evolves from an annoyance to a painful problem, the first inclination is to try to dig it out and clip it. But trying to fix things at home can make the problem worse. See your New Albany, IN, podiatrist for professional help, including:

- Safe surgical removal of the nail.
- Wound treatment and wrapping.
- Antibiotic therapy (creams or oral medication).
- Preventative nail clipping. 

Protect Your Toes
It is very important to manage ingrown toenails if you have been diagnosed with diabetes or a circulatory condition. Without proper circulation, wounds on the lower extremities (including the feet and toes) don’t heal as quickly as they should. Protect your toes by clipping your nails the right way (a millimeter or two above the place where the skin meets the nail) and keeping them moderately moisturized. Soaking your toes regularly can also help.

Ask for Help
If you have an ingrown toenail that is starting to pierce your skin, or you are prone to this particular foot problem, ask a podiatrist at Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN, for help. Call (812) 945-9221 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Zahid Ladha.

By Foot First Podiatry
March 20, 2018

Toe deformities can be attributed to an imbalance in the toe muscles and tendons, tight-fitting shoes, injury, or certain diseases that increase the likelihood that a toe will bend in the shape of a hammer or a mallet. A hammertoe bends at the middle joint, while a mallet toe (or claw toe) bends at the joint nearest to the toenail, so perhaps there are only truly two if you don’t count the claw.

Initially, a bent toe may not be cause for alarm, but as the condition moves along, the tendons and ligaments and tissues of the toe can tighten further, thereby preventing any bending at all and causing considerable pain and discomfort. As this condition becomes more permanently bent, it will also cause the affected toes to rub on your footwear, causing the formation of corns and calluses.

Risk factors for developing toe deformities

Some individuals are more prone to developing these abnormalities. Some of the factors to be aware of are:

  • Sex—Females are considered to be more susceptible to developing these conditions.
  • Your age—People fifty years of age or older are more likely to develop hammertoes along with bunions.
  • The length of your toes—In certain people, when the second toe is longer than the largest toe, it may increase the chances of getting a toe deformity.
  • Diseases—People who suffer from diabetes and arthritis are also more susceptible.

When hammertoes cause you pain and discomfort, the pressure and pain can often be alleviated with specially designed orthotic shoe inserts and pads.

If you are suffering complications with hammertoes, making an appointment with an experienced board-certified podiatrist for proper diagnosis and treatment is essential, so be sure to schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!

By Foot First Podiatry
March 06, 2018

If you suffer from an ingrown toenail occasionally, it can be a painful inconvenience, but for some people, several toes can be affected over and over again, making an inconvenience into a chronic fight to control infections, pain, and discomfort.

An inward growing toenail is not always obvious to the untrained eye since the edge of the nail may be hidden by the soft skin. There may be swelling and yellowing, redness, and pus. If the skin on your toe is also unusually warm, that could be a sign of a bacterial or fungal nail infection that could spread and cause serious complications, especially in those individuals who have diabetes.

Some causes of ingrown toenails include:

  • Improper shoes—High heeled shoes can cause or exacerbate ingrown toenails because they force your feet into the front of the shoe. Choose shoes with a wide toe box to help prevent this unnecessary pressure.
  • Not cutting nails straight across—The nails should be cut straight across with a toenail clipper to be certain they are cut evenly and span the entire width of the toe. If you cut your nails too short and on a curve, the edge of the nail is more likely to grow into the surrounding skin.
  • Injury—Stubbing or injuring your toe can cause the nail to grow inward.
  • Fungal nail infections—Foot fungi can cause serious infections that can undermine the strength and vitality of the nail and cause it to grow into the skin.

How to treat ingrown toenails

Treatments vary depending on the severity and they can range from the conservative to the surgical. Warm water soaks can soften the skin around the nail and help prevent infection. You can try lifting up the edge of the nail and inserting a small piece of cotton to help the nail grow away from the skin. Be sure to treat any early signs of infection with antibacterials. If your ingrown toenails keep coming back, your foot doctor can do a straightforward outpatient procedure during which the toe is numbed and the ingrown nail is removed, allowing a new nail to grow correctly.

If you are suffering from ingrown toenails, schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha is committed to the best podiatric care for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!

By Foot First Podiatry
January 31, 2018

For a variety of reasons, toenail fungal infections can be very difficult to eradicate. The inside of your shoes is the perfect growing habitat for fungi, where the warm, moist, and dark conditions help them thrive. Having reduced blood flow to your feet from systemic diseases such as peripheral artery disease and diabetes can also make toenail fungus become entrenched requiring more aggressive measures to effectively treat.

If you notice that a toenail fungal infection never seems to totally resolve, here are some issues to consider during your investigation:

What causes recurring fungal nail Infections?

  • Incomplete treatment—Over the counter remedies may not fully eradicate the fungi and symptoms may abate for some time and then slowly return. The infection resides underneath the nail and it can be extremely difficult to completely eradicate. Talk to your podiatrist about more advanced treatments.
  • Being exposed to the fungus—Be certain to decontaminate all of your footwear, and be sure to keep any shared bathroom and shower areas clean and fungi free to avoid picking up the microbes at home.
  • Lowered immune response—Certain medications may weaken your chances of fighting off an infection. Patients with diabetes are more susceptible to getting repeat fungal nail infections due to immune system dysfunction.

Preventing recurring toenail infections

 The following suggestions will help to keep a nail fungus infection from happening again:

  • Antifungal spray may be used on your socks, feet, and footwear.
  • Be careful to change your shoes every day so they have a chance to air out.
  • Wear protective footwear such as shower shoes or sandals in locker rooms and shower facilities.
  • Consult with your foot care specialist about more aggressive treatments including laser nail therapy and oral or topical antifungal medications. In severe cases, the nail may need to be removed surgically to treat the underlying infection.

If you are concerned that you may have a fungal nail infection, schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!

 

By Foot First Podiatry
December 13, 2017
Tags: Bunions   Arthritis   orthotic   surgically  

Many people are tormented by bunions, with almost one fourth of all of those in the U.S. between the ages of 17 and 65 having at least one of them. A bunion is caused by an enlarged big toe joint that often pushes the big toe into the adjacent toes. As the bunion increases in size, the bump will rub against your footwear, causing irritation and swelling. Some people may have a genetic predisposition to developing bunions, but they can also be caused by tight fitting shoes, arthritis and an injury to the foot.

How to treat bunions and keep them from getting worse

Since a bunion is actually a bone deformity, it won’t get better on its own, and will generally become more pronounced and painful over time. Conservative treatments involve easing pressure and pain using padding and custom made orthotic inserts that can help provide stability and repositioning. A splint can be worn at night to pull the toe back into position and realign the joint. Flexibility exercises can improve and maintain mobility and reduce the effects of arthritis on the bunion. If the bunion is causing severe pain, it may be necessary to surgically reduce the bunion and realign the toe joint.

Investing in a good pair of quality shoes that are properly fitted is a good tip for keeping your bunions at bay. Shoes should provide good arch support, flatter heels, and plenty of room in the toe box. Have your feet properly measured each time you buy shoes and make sure there’s a finger width of space between your longest toe and the front of the shoe.

If you are concerned about bunions or other foot or ankle problem, schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha, D.P.M. is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!