Table of Contents
Do you often feel pain in your feet when standing, walking, or running? Or do your feet have cuts, wart-like growth, or peeling soles? These symptoms could be signs of biomechanical foot complications requiring urgent treatment.
The good news is that you can get an accurate diagnosis and treatment from a podiatrist. And what’s more; you can have tailor-made rehabilitative care and regain your foot mobility.
Here, we examine common foot complications and treatment options.
But First: A Primer on Podiatry
Podiatrists, also called podiatric physicians, are medical professionals who provide specialist treatment for problems affecting the feet or lower limbs. They can treat many foot injuries and complications arising from underlying conditions. While working closely with other healthcare specialists, podiatrists can conduct foot surgeries, request X-ray or lab reports, prescribe medications and reset fractured bones.
What Conditions Can a Podiatrist Treat?
A podiatrist Dallas specializes in many foot-related conditions, including the following:
Bunions are bony bumps that predominantly form on the joint adjacent to the big toe. Although most people think a bunion is a growth, it is actually a misaligned joint. A bunion forms when the metatarsal bone leans toward the foot’s interior while the toe remains in position. As a result, the joint near the toe wears down and may be painful.
Most people believe bunions result from poor shoe selection or other lifestyle factors. However, the condition is primarily genetic, although tight shoes can aggravate the symptoms by rubbing against the bump.
Podiatrists recommend two treatment options for bunions. First, you may accommodate the bony bump by modifying your footwear or wearing open sandals that don’t rub against the bunion. Alternatively, you could visit a podiatrist Dallas for surgery to realign the joint.
It is a painful condition affecting the soft tissues attached to the heel bone (Plantar Fascia). Usually, an inflammation of the sole begins when environmental factors and lifestyle activities cause tearing of the soft tissues on the sole.
Plantar fasciitis may also come from changing your exercise routine, wearing new shoes, or adopting a frequent traveling schedule that puts pressure on your feet for a long time.
Patients who suffer from the condition often complain of deep pain in the heel when taking the first steps of the day, resting, or sitting for an extended period of time.
Treatment for the condition may vary depending on severity and lifestyle. Treatment includes stretching protocols, specialized shoe inserts, steroid injections, oral pills, and anti-inflammatory medication. A podiatrist may also perform minimally invasive surgery on your heels in severe cases.
An ankle sprain involves tearing one or more ligaments connecting your ankle bones. There are two main ankle sprains: inversion and eversion ankle sprains.
In an inversion injury, three ligaments may partially or wholly tear, rolling the ankle such that it only points toward the body. On the other hand, in an eversion ankle sprain, the ankle rolls in the opposite direction such that the sole points away from your body.
Ankle sprains commonly occur from trauma due to missed steps, sports injuries, or accidentally rolling the ankle. In addition, risk factors like having high arches, or a history of past sprains, could also cause sprains.
An ankle sprain can damage the nearby ligaments and cause severe ankle instability, which requires urgent treatment.
A podiatrist will first conduct an X-ray or MRI scan to rule out the possibility of a fracture. Afterward, the specialist will immobilize the ankle using boots and braces. After a few weeks, the podiatrist may refer you to a physical therapist to rehabilitate the ankle.
Ingrown toenails occur when the toenails grow into the skin instead of above. As a result, the ingrown nail curves and embeds deep in the skin, causing discomfort.
Although the condition is primarily genetic, many factors may contribute to ingrown toenails. They include;
- Old age
- Sweaty feet
- Thicker nails
- Wearing tight shoes
- Cutting the toenails too short
- Poor foot hygiene
Treatment involves numbing the toe, cleaning, and trimming back the edges. Afterward, a podiatrist may use a special knife to cut the ingrown portion of the nail. Finally, some chemicals may be poured on the trimmed edges of the toenail to prevent future in-growth.