Preventing Heel Pain
You may, like many people, take your feet for granted, but they play a very important role in your daily life. Every time your stand, walk or run, they are responsible for carrying your weight. They are built to handle it and to cope with all the forces placed upon them on a daily basis. In fact, they can withstand up to four times your body weight. However, because they have to meet such demands, they are also prone to strain and injury. When this happens, it can affect your whole routine. Dr. John Murphy is a foot doctor at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD. He is dedicated to treating all forms of foot and ankle pain.
How to Avoid Heel Pain
You can avoid heel pain in the following ways:
- Do ankle exercises: Doing foot and ankle stretches when you wake in the morning and before you go to bed at night can help. Stretches will keep your muscles and ligaments supple and relieve tension at the end of the day. This can help you minimize your risk of injury.
- Wear orthotics: If you spend a lot of time on your feet at work or you practice running or athletics, wearing shoes with support or orthotic devices can help to protect your feet from strain or injury and help you avoid heel pain.
- Massage your calves: Keeping your calf muscles free from tension can help you reduce heel pain by minimizing your risk of plantar fasciitis. This is a condition that causes heel pain when your plantar facia, which connects your toes to your heel, becomes strained. Massaging your calf muscles for just 30 seconds several times a day can help.
If you live in Ellicott City, MD and you are experiencing heel pain, you can call Dr. Murphy at (410) 992-8504 to schedule an appointment.
Foot pain is surprisingly common, so much so that 77% of individuals report that they’ve experienced significant pain in their feet, based on an American Podiatric Medical Association report. There’s plenty going on in with your feet simply because they have all these tendons, ligaments, and bones. And possible causes of pain could vary widely from inflammation and injury to actual deformities.
If you’ve yet to consult with your podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy, here at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD, about your foot pain, meanwhile, learn the most common causes of foot pain here.
Possible Causes of Your Foot Pain
While not all aches and pains in your feet are serious, you shouldn’t ever ignore them. With this in mind, here are some of the most common culprits of foot pain:
- Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
- Fallen Arch
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Calluses and Corns
- Morton’s Neuroma
When to Visit Your Podiatrist for Foot Pain
In general, you should get your foot pain checked out by your podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD when you’ve tried home remedies for a day or two and your pain persists or gets worse. Likewise, having frequent pain in the arches, heels, or toes isn’t normal. Since your feet serve as a stable foundation for your entire body, they’re immensely complex structures that require proper maintenance and care.
This means that aside from negatively affecting how you walk, foot pain could likewise lead to pain in your other body parts, like the legs and the back. Further, keep in mind that there are lots of variables when determining the source of foot pain in different people. For instance, pain in your arches could cause heel pain.
In this light, based on when you received a diagnosis and whether or not it’s already impacted another part of your foot, these issues could’ve actually resulted from various causes that may need different treatments. So pay close attention to what your body’s telling you and the minute you notice that something is amiss, see your podiatrist.
Need Foot Pain Relief? We Can Help
Arrange a consultation with your podiatrist here at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott, MD, Dr. John Murphy, by calling (410) 992-8504.
Bunions occur when the joint at the bottom of your big toe becomes misaligned. As a result of the misalignment, a painful bump forms at the base of your big toe. Fortunately, treatments offered by your Ellicott City, MD, podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy of Maryland Podiatry Center, can slow the progression of your bunions and relieve your pain.
What causes bunions?
Although anyone can get bunions, you may be more likely to develop the foot condition if:
- You're female.
- You have a foot imbalance or deformity.
- You wear high heels or tight-fitting shoes.
- You have gout, rheumatoid arthritis, or a disease that affects the nerves and muscles of your feet.
- One of your legs is longer than the other.
- You have flat feet.
- You injured your foot.
How are bunions treated?
Bunion treatment involves relieving your pain and taking steps to keep your condition from worsening. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication, like ibuprofen and naproxen sodium, eases pain and reduces inflammation. Ice packs can also be helpful in reducing pain and inflammation.
Buying roomier shoes is a must if you have bunion pain. Tight shoes and high heels increase pressure on your foot, which may worsen your bunion and increase your pain.
You may also want to apply adhesive pads to cushion your bunion when you wear shoes. The pads also protect corns and calluses that can form if your big toe begins to overlap your other toes.
If your bunion pain disrupts your life or you can no longer control your pain with home treatment, it's time to call your Ellicott City foot doctor. Your podiatrist can recommend several treatments that may be helpful including:
- Orthotics: These prescription shoe inserts improve the alignment of your feet and also offer extra cushioning.
- Night Splints and Taping: Night splints are worn while you sleep and are designed to realign your feet and slow the progression of your bunions. Taping your foot during the day can also improve alignment.
- Cortisone Injections: The injections may be recommended if your pain continues despite trying over-the-counter medications.
- Surgery: If other treatment options aren't helpful, surgery may be an option. During surgery, your podiatrist realigns your joint and removes excess bone or tissue.
Has bunion pain changed your life? Call your podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD, Dr. Murphy of Maryland Podiatry Center, at (410) 992-8504 to schedule your appointment.
With the constant pressure and weight we put on our feet, there's no wonder foot pain is a common complaint. However, when pulling off your shoes and propping up your feet isn't enough to find relief, you could be suffering from a nasty problem called plantar fasciitis.
This common condition can result in intense and possibly debilitating foot pain. Fortunately, the doctors here at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City are experts in treating Plantar fasciitis. Here is what to know about the condition, and how we can help you find relief.
What is plantar fasciitis?
The plantar fascia is a thick tissue that connects your heel bone to your toes. Plantar fasciitis occurs when the tissue becomes irritated and inflamed.
What can cause plantar fasciitis?
- Wearing flimsy, high heeled, too big or small or unsupportive shoes
- Standing for prolonged periods of time
- Being overweight
- Having tight calf muscles
- Having high arches in your feet
- Having flat feet
- Participating in exercise that puts constant pressure on your feet, such as sprinting
How do I know if I have plantar fasciitis?
If you are experiencing one or more of the following, your foot pain may be the result of plantar fasciitis:
- Pain, ranging from mild-to-severe, on the underside of your foot near or on the heel
- Swelling of your heel
- Stiffness in your heel
- Pain that is particularly bad in the morning
- Pain that increases when you stand
- Pain that intensifies when you are carrying heavy objects
How can I treat my foot pain?
Your podiatrist at our Ellicott City office will first examine and press on your foot to feel for tenderness. Depending on the severity of your plantar fasciitis, your podiatrist may recommend one or more of the following at home or in-office treatments:
- Icing the area
- Wearing well-fitting, supportive shoes or using inserts
- Physical therapy
- Cortisone injections
- Wearing a splint or brace
- Maintaining a healthy body weight
- Sticking to low-pressure exercises
- Avoiding activities that put excess pressure on the foot, such as jumping or running
- Taking an over-the-counter oral pain reliever
- Stretching your arches
If none of the above lend the relief you need, your podiatrist may talk to you about surgical options at our Ellicott City office.
Need relief? Give us a call
If foot pain has you on the sidelines, call Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City at (410) 992-8504. We're here to get you back on your feet!
Are you diabetic? People who suffer from chronic conditions, such as diabetes, are more susceptible to ankle and foot conditions than other people are. That's why Dr. John Murphy recommends that diabetic patients attend annual check-ups at his office in Ellicott City, MD. During these appointments, your podiatrist uses P.A.D. screening (Peripheral Arterial Disease) to diagnose diseases that may go unnoticed and a CVI Exam to detect damaged valves.
You shouldn't leave it up to your podiatrist to examine your feet—you should regularly inspect them as well. After all, diabetics are likely to develop peripheral neuropathy (i.e. nerve damage) which numbs limbs and makes it difficult for people to feel pain because of poor circulation. During these self-exams, make sure to note any changes in temperature, skin color, pain, and swelling. Keep a close eye on broken skin, ulcers, or high blood pressure, which may result in serious foot injuries.
The importance of proper diabetic foot care is rooted in how you care for feet prior to getting an actual wound. Diabetes impacts a person's nervous, immune, and circulatory systems. If your foot has a wound or an ulcer, you need to speak with your Ellicott City podiatrist. In addition to speaking with your doctor, be sure to wash your feet with warm water and soap on a daily basis, as well as moisturize.
Other ways to maintain the health of your feet is to:
- Trim toenails to prevent ingrown toenails, infections, and nail fungus
- Wear moisture-wicking socks and comfortable shoes to prevent damage
- Buy comfortable shoes that are not too tight or too loose
- Wear clean, dry socks every day
- To avoid cuts and lacerations from harmful objects, never walk outside in bare feet
If you do develop a wound, contact Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD. Dial 410-992-8504 today to get in touch with your podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy.
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