Your left foot is very painful when you walk. The discomfort centers on the joint at the bottom of your big toe. Could it be a bunion? Bunions affect a full third of the population in the US. Learn here about this common foot deformity and Dr. John Murphy at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD can help.
What is a bunion?
Basically, it's a painful bump on the side of the foot at the big toe joint. Characterized by redness, swelling and tenderness, a bunion impacts how easily you walk and even leads to callus and corn formation at the side and bottom of the foot. Left untreated, bursitis and arthritis can develop in the joint.
The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons and the American Podiatric Medical Association agree a bunion has a distinct hereditary component. In other words, if your relatives have had bunions, you, too, may be prone to them. However, foot care professionals also say that poorly fitting shoes put pressure on the metatarsophalangeal joint at the base of the big toe--so much so that the joint bulges.
Additionally, the big toe often moves in toward the second toe, and in extreme cases, the second toe can move in toward the third toe. Hammertoes and other podiatric defects can result.
Dr. Murphy has extensive experience in treating deformities of the lower extremities. In fact, he is a Diplomate of the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgeons and has treated numerous bunions in his years of practice in Ellicott City.
If you present with a painful foot, he'll do a hands-on examination, watch you walk, ask you about your symptoms, current health history and medications and take some digital X-rays. If you have a bunion, he may advise any one of a combination of several treatments. Your foot doctor will individualize your care plan according to the particulars of your case.
Treatments may include:
- A simple change of shoes to ones with a wider toe box and more support
- Removal of any corns and calluses
- Customized shoes inserts (orthotics) to remove the pressure from the joint and to normalize your gait
- Night time splints
- Shoe padding
- Surgery (bunionectomy)
- Over the counter analgesics
Walk well, feel great
You can when you visit Maryland Podiatric Center for your bunion and all your foot health needs. Contact the office in Ellicott City, MD for your consultation today: (410) 992-8504.
Are you wondering if your foot pain could be due to plantar fasciitis?
You don’t know what is causing your heel pain but you certainly know that it’s putting a damper on your days. You want to go for a run but the aching, gnawing heel pain is enough to keep you benched. Perhaps it’s difficult just to get around the house let alone think about working out. Our Ellicott City, MD, podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy, is here to offer up some insight into what might be going on.
One of the most common causes of heel pain is a condition known as plantar fasciitis. Fortunately, for many people, this condition isn’t serious and will go away on its own. Of course, this isn’t the only thing that could cause your heel pain so it’s a good idea to visit your Ellicott City foot doctor if your heel pain doesn’t get better after a week, or if symptoms get worse.
Other common causes of heel pain include:
- Achilles tendonitis
- Heel spurs
- Tarsal tunnel syndrome
- Heel pad inflammation
- Stress fracture
It will be nearly impossible to diagnose the cause of your heel pain all on your own, but this is where we come in. We have the tools and knowledge necessary to get to the root of your problem so that we can provide a treatment plan to get you back up and moving around.
What is plantar fasciitis?
There is a thick band of tissue that runs the length of your feet known as the plantar fascia. It extends from the toes along the soles of the feet until it attaches at the heel. Sometimes, through injury or overuse, this band of tissue becomes inflamed and irritated. This is a common condition found in runners or those who are on their feet a lot throughout the day. Athletes and those who are overweight are also prone to developing this inflammatory foot condition.
In most cases, the inflammation will go away on its own, but there are simple everyday things you can do to manage your symptoms and ensure that the problem doesn’t get worse. Promote faster healing by:
- Resting the foot as much as possible and avoiding high-impact sports or activities like running or football.
- If you must continue to exercise, opt for the stationary bike or swimming, which won’t put more stress on the bones, tissues or joints.
- Also, talk to us about ways to splint the foot to improve the alignment all while providing additional cushioning and support that the inflamed tissue will need to heal more efficiently.
- Only wear shoes that provide the proper amount of support and stabilization. You may also need to wear orthotics in your shoes to improve foot alignment and to absorb shock while walking, standing or moving.
- In cases that don't respond to conservative treatment, Extracorporeal Shock Wave Treatment (ESWT) may be needed.
Are your symptoms pointing to plantar fasciitis? Do you hate battling foot pain? Then don’t do it alone. Call Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD, today to find out how we can help.
Don’t let athlete’s foot affect your foot health. Find out how to protect yourself.
If you’ve ever had athlete’s foot before, you remember the unpleasant itching, redness and burning of the skin. Chances are pretty good that you would like to avoid experiencing that again at all costs. Our Ellicott City, MD, podiatrist Dr. John Murphy completely understands, which is why we are here to provide some advice on how to keep your feet athlete’s foot-free.
Fungus is all around us, but there are certainly places where it loves to thrive. These areas tend to be damp, dark and cool. Common environments for fungus to breed include public restrooms, school locker rooms and even your local gym’s locker and shower area.
It’s also possible to get athlete’s foot from a nail salon if they don’t sterilize their tools as often or as effectively as they should. The best thing you can do is wear shoes at all times, even when using a public shower. Carry those shower shoes with you or wear sandals in these areas to reduce your risk of athlete’s foot.
While going barefoot puts you at risk for a fungal infection, most people assume that if they just wear socks and shoes all the time they will be fine. Of course, there are some misconceptions regarding this. As our Ellicott City, MD, foot doctor will tell you, you shouldn’t wear the same socks and shoes everyday, as this can easily become a damp, dark breeding ground for fungus.
When you are in the comfort of your own home, this is the perfect time to kick off those shoes and let your feet breathe a bit. If your feet are prone to becoming sweaty, apply an antifungal powder to your feet and shoes before putting them on. Never wear your socks more than once and don’t wear shoes twice in a row (give them time to air out completely).
Do you have questions about athlete’s foot? Having issues treating the problem yourself? Then call Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD, today to get the problem figured out.
What your podiatrist in Ellicott City wants you to know
Your feet are an important but often overlooked part of your body. It’s easy to take your feet for granted. So how do you take proper care of your feet? Dr. John Murphy at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD wants to share the facts about what your feet need.
A proper foot care regimen is easy, and should only take a few minutes out of your day. Remember to:
- Thoroughly wash and dry your feet every day.
- Apply moisturizing lotion or cream to your feet daily
- Trim your toenails straight across with no rounded corners
Examine your feet daily with a hand mirror to look for:
- Discolored, thick nails (signs of nail fungus)
- Cracks or cuts that aren’t healing (signs of infection)
- Scaling, peeling skin (signs of Athlete’s foot)
- Abnormal growths like bunions, corns or calluses
Don’t forget to wear shoes that support your feet and don’t crowd your toes. Wearing the right shoes can help you avoid bunions, hammertoe, corns and calluses. Replace shoes that are old and worn out, and try to avoid going barefoot.
If you play sports, always wear shoes that are appropriate for the sport you are playing in order to avoid a sports injury.
In the summer, don’t forget to apply sunscreen on your feet. SPF 15 is great for daily wear, but use SPF 30 if you are outside for an extended period of time.
Be sure to include a regular visit to your podiatrist every year, especially if you have diabetes. Foot problems like ulcers and diabetic neuropathy can develop, causing you pain and loss of mobility. Dr. Murphy can help you guard against potential life-altering problems with your feet and toes from diabetes.
Remember that foot pain is not normal and that you don’t have to deal with foot pain by yourself. To find out more about how to take proper care of your feet, call Dr. Murphy at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD. Call today and protect your feet!
Find out how orthotics could give your aching feet a break.
Sick and tired of tired feet? Dealing with achy arches or sore soles? Find out how orthotics in Ellicott City could be exactly what you need to get you back on your feet.
Orthotics are shoe inserts that help to take pressure off certain parts of your feet, absorb shock, improve balance, and help stabilize the foot and ankle. Some orthotics can be purchased at your local drugstore, but these shoe inserts are not designed to fit your foot or to tailor to your specific foot conditions. However, your Ellicott City podiatrist can create custom-made orthotics that can improve the condition of your foot.
Types of Orthotics
There are three main types of orthotics to choose from: soft, semi-rigid and rigid orthotics. Soft orthotics are often made from a flexible material like foam or gel. This material helps to reduce pain while also improving your balance and absorbing the shock of walking.
Semi-rigid orthotics are more versatile, as they offer the benefits of soft orthotics with the stability and support of rigid orthotics. This type is great for supporting, cushioning and protecting the foot, which makes it ideal for athletes and those with more active lifestyles.
Rigid orthotics consist of carbon fiber or plastic, which help to control the movement of the foot and its joints. You are more likely to use rigid orthotics in dress shoes to help take some of the strain and pressure of the foot.
Conditions Orthotics Can Improve
Orthotics can alleviate the symptoms of a variety of different foot ailments:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendinitis
- Flat feet
- Foot pain
- Injuries or strains
If you want to experience comfort and relief from your foot problems, then it’s time to consider getting orthotics in Ellicott City. Contact Dr. John J. Murphy, DPM at Maryland Podiatry Center and find out if orthotics is right for you.
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