Heel pain can be a nasty problem. Here’s when you should seek medical attention…
If you are struggling with your heel pain or dealing with recurring or persistent pain in the heel or foot it may be time to turn to our Gainesville, VA, podiatrist Dr. Mukesh Bhakta for diagnosis and treatment. After all, there are many reasons why you may be dealing with heel pain and the root cause could also determine the most effective treatment for you. Don’t let pain keep you from enjoying your favorite activities.
What causes heel pain?
You may notice that your pain shows up gradually over time. This is usually the case with heel pain, as it’s often a result of overuse rather than an injury. The most common cause of heel pain is a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which causes pain below the heel bone that may also affect the arches of the feet. Other causes of heel pain include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Heel spur
- An infection
- Tumor (rare)
When should I see a doctor?
The sooner you seek treatment the sooner your pain will go away; however, most people will choose to treat more minor symptoms on their own just by resting, icing and taking over-the-counter pain relievers; however, you should turn to our Gainesville, VA, podiatrist if your:
- Heel pain doesn’t improve after a week of rest and home care
- Pain continues to get worse
- Pain is accompanied by severe swelling
- Symptoms include tingling, numbness or weakness
- Pain is accompanied by a fever
- Symptoms make it impossible to move or bend the foot, or to put weight on the foot
During your evaluation, your podiatrist will go through your medical history and perform a in-depth physical examination. We will ask you questions about your symptoms. These questions can help us rule out certain conditions. Sometimes imaging tests and further testing is required.
Prince William Foot & Ankle Center provides a full range of foot and ankle services to the Gainesville and South Riding, VA, areas. If you are dealing with heel pain that isn’t responding to at-home care then call our office today at (703) 753-3338 for an evaluation.
Preventive care, an essential aspect of maintaining good health, can also help you protect your feet. In fact, regular visits to your podiatrist, Dr. Mukesh Bhakta of Prince William Foot & Ankle Center in Gainesville, VA, offer a simple way to improve your comfort and decrease the risk of complications due to chronic conditions—read on to learn more!
How You Can Benefit From Preventive Care
Feet are often overlooked yet play a crucial role in your life. When your feet hurt, everything becomes more difficult, from navigating the stairs to your bedroom to walking from the parking lot to your office to participating in your favorite activities.
Preventive care can help you:
- Manage Chronic Conditions: Do you have diabetes, circulation problems, or an autoimmune disorder? All of these conditions can affect your feet, increasing your risk of infections, pain, numbness, swelling, and other symptoms. Thanks to preventive visits, your Gainesville foot doctor can diagnose and treat problems before they can affect your health.
- Avoid Balance Issues As You Age: Age-related changes in your feet may affect your gait and increase your risk of falling. Fortunately, your podiatrist offers custom-designed shoe inserts called orthotics to improve arch support and keep your feet properly aligned when you wear shoes.
- Prevent Back, Leg or Hip Pain: Foot imbalances, arch problems, and other issues don't just cause pain in your feet, but may affect the alignment of your entire body. Your foot doctor can determine if a biomechanical foot issue may cause or contribute to your back, hip, or leg pain.
- Identify Foot or Ankle Conditions in Children: Preventive visits are particularly important for young children. Promptly identifying foot, ankle, or toe conditions will ensure that your child receives the treatment needed to avoid lifelong foot issues.
- Prevent Sports Injuries in Children and Adults: Sports participation is a common cause of foot and ankle injuries. Injuries may be more likely to occur if you turn your feet inward, you have a foot imbalance, or if your shoes don't adequately cushion and support your feet. During your visit to the foot doctor, you may be surprised to learn that you have one of these issues. Fortunately, your podiatrist can make a few recommendations that will help you avoid injuries when you're on the field or court.
Interested? Give Us a Call
Improve your foot health with preventive care! Call Prince William Foot & Ankle Center in Gainesville, VA, today at (703) 753-3338 to schedule an appointment with your podiatrist.
Find out how to get your bunions under control without resorting to surgery.
Is a bunion affecting your ability to get around? Our Gainesville, VA, podiatrist Dr. Mukesh Bhakta can help create the ideal treatment plan for you based on the severity of your bunion, your lifestyle and activity level to make sure that your bunion gets the care it needs without changing your routine.
Here are some ways to get your bunion symptoms under control.
Change your footwear: Any shoes that have high heels taller than 2 inches, or shoes that bunch up toes or have pointed toes are a no-no for people with bunions. Opt for shoes with a wide toe box that give your toes plenty of room to wiggle and move around.
Taping or padding the foot: Applying a protective pad to the bunion before wearing shoes can alleviate additional pressure placed on the area when standing or walking. Furthermore, taping or splinting the foot can also properly realign the foot and joint to reduce pain.
Wear custom orthotics: Our Gainesville, VA, podiatrist can also make prescription shoe inserts, which redistribute weight evenly throughout the foot to prevent the bunion from getting worse. Orthotics can reduce shock absorption while also providing the foot with the support it needs while in motion.
Medication: On days when your bunion just won’t quit, an over-the-counter pain reliever such as ibuprofen may be able to at least alleviate your discomfort. If you are dealing with severe bunion pain that over-the-counter pain relievers aren’t strong enough to handle, then Dr. Bhakta may recommend steroid injections to treat severe swelling and pain.
Icing: Icing is another easy and simple way to reduce swelling and pain, and may also provide you with relief from your symptoms when you would rather not resort to over-the-counter pain relievers. Ice can dull the pain and reduce inflammation. Ice the bunion for 15 minutes at a time, 2-3 times a day.
When should I see a podiatrist?
If you aren’t sure if you are dealing with a bunion then it’s time to turn to a foot and ankle doctor who can diagnose your condition. After all, there are many reasons someone may experience foot pain. If your symptoms aren’t responding to at-home care then Dr. Bhakta would be happy to create a more effective treatment plan to get your symptoms under control.
Whether you have questions about treating your bunion or you are experiencing symptoms of a bunion, turn to the experts at Prince William Foot & Ankle Center in Gainesville and South Riding, VA, for the treatment you need.
Do you still have toenail fungus even though you brush anti-fungal medication on your nails every day? Laser nail treatment may finally help clear your nails. Your Gainesville, VA, podiatrist, Dr. Mukesh Bhakta of Prince William Foot & Ankle Center, can help you decide if laser treatment is good option for you.
Laser treatment targets fungus at its source
Over-the-counter topical medications aren't always effective in treating toenail fungus. The medications only penetrate the first few layers of your nail and never reach deeper layers or your nail bed.
If you don't kill the fungus growing underneath the nail on the nail bed, your nails won't get better. During laser treatment, shorts bursts of laser energy heat the pigments that make fungus look yellow. Heat immediately kills the fungus, eliminating the fungal infection. Depending on the severity of the infection, you may need several treatments spaced a few weeks apart.
Laser therapy offers a pain-free treatment method
Your Gainesville foot doctor precisely aims the laser light during your treatments. Laser beams only reach your toenails and don't harm skin or healthy tissues. Thanks to the short bursts used to generate laser energy, your toes never hurt or feel uncomfortably hot during the treatment. You may experience a little tingling, but the sensation isn't unpleasant.
Laser treatment has no side effects and doesn't interfere with your usual activities. You can go back to work immediately after you receive treatment.
Your toenail will still look yellow after you finish your therapy, but that doesn't mean that the treatment didn't work. As your nail grows out, you'll notice that the new growth is clear.
While you wait for your nails to grow, it's important to avoid new infections. Although the fungi in your nails have been killed by the laser light, you can still develop another fungal infection if you share socks, shoes or towels with someone else or walk barefoot in a public locker room or pool area. Taking a few steps to protect your feet will reduce your risk of reinfection.
Clear your toenail fungus with laser nail treatment! Call your Gainesville, VA, podiatrist, Dr. Mukesh Bhakta of Prince William Foot & Ankle Center, at (703) 753-3338 to schedule your appointment.
Corns are calluses form around irritated portions of toes as a bodily defense mechanism. Dr. Mukesh Bhakta, Gainesville, VA, podiatrist, knows about corns and calluses all too well.
More about Corns and Calluses:
Corns and calluses are thickened skin that develop due to skin irritation on toes. They aren't contagious but may become painful if left untreated, according to American Podiatric Medical Association. People with certain foot deformities, such as hammer toes, are more prone to corns and calluses.
What are the causes of corns and calluses?
Corns appear when the toe rubs against the interior of a shoe, or because of excessive pressure at the balls of the feet, which is more common among women who wear high heels regularly.
Corns and calluses typically have:
- a rough, dull appearance
- raised or rounded
- hard to differentiate from warts
- cause pain
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, this is how you can treat corns and calluses:
- Soak the corn or callus in warm water for about five to 10 minutes or until the skin softens.
- Dip a pumice stone in warm water, then use the stone to gently file the corn or callus in a circular or sideways motion to remove dead skin.
- Don't take off too much skin while filing the corn because that may cause bleeding and infection.
- Apply moisturizing lotion or cream to the area daily containing salicylic acid, ammonium lactate, or urea that gradually soften hard corns and calluses.
- Use padding to protect calluses from further irritation by placing a piece of moleskin in your shoe to prevent the corn from rubbing against your shoe.
- Wear shoes that properly fit or feet may be slightly swollen.
- Keep toenails trimmed to prevent toes from pushing up against your shoe.
- There are special over-the-counter as well.
- Your Gainesville podiatrist may also surgically remove the corns.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding corns and calluses, be sure to contact your Gainesville, VA, podiatrist today!
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