Posts for category: Foot Care
Discover the best treatment options for getting rid of that unsightly toenail fungus.
Toenail fungal infections are more common than you might realize. In fact, if you are dealing with a toenail that is gnarled, thick and yellow then you are most likely dealing with a fungal infection. While it might not be causing you issues yet, it’s important that you nip this problem in the bud, as it isn’t always easy to treat on your own. Our podiatrists at New England Podiatry in Chestnut Hill and Newton-Wellesley, MA, and serving patients in Boston, Metro West and North and South Shores are here to tell you your treatment options when it comes to dealing with a toenail fungus.
There are many articles on the Internet talking about different home remedies for killing toenail fungus. Of course, while some people may swear by certain home remedies, there is no substantial proof that this is an effective treatment option.
At home care you may have already tried include an over-the-counter antifungal treatment that is specifically designed to target toenail fungus. Most of these medications are topical, which means that you will need to apply it to the affected nail as directed.
When to See a Podiatrist
If you are treating your toenail fungus at home but it doesn’t seem to be responding to treatment it’s usually a good time to call our Boston foot doctor for an evaluation. Since fungal infections can get worse with time, it’s important that if at-home care isn’t helping that you seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Those with compromised immune systems, nerve damage in the feet or diabetes should always see a podiatrist right away if they experience changes in their feet, as even the most minor problems can become more serious if they aren’t properly and professionally treated.
Professional Treatment Options
Even though toenail fungus can be persistent or challenging to treat with at-home measures, our podiatric specialists near Boston have an effective laser treatment that can safely and effectively penetrate through the nail in ways that a topical antifungal can’t. The treatment itself only takes about 30-40 minutes, it’s painless and there is no recovery time.
Laser fungal treatment may be a great option for you if at-home treatments or prescription oral antifungal medication isn’t working for you. Those with severe or recurring infections may also want to consider getting laser treatment.
If you are dealing with severe or persistent fungal infections and are interested in how laser therapy can help you, then call New England Podiatry in Chestnut Hill or Newton, MA, today.
Your heel really hurts. More than soreness, you feel a sharp pain that radiates across the bottom of your foot. Most commonly, heel pain stems from plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the connective tissue which stretches from the heel bone to the toes. At New England Podiatry in Chestnut Hill and Newton-Wellesley, MA, and serving patients in Boston, Metro West and North and South Shores, your team of highly-skilled podiatrists have heel pain treatment options that will get you some relief.
The origins of heel pain
Some heel pain does come from a fracture of the calcaneus, or heel bone. Alternatively, it could stem from a plantar wart on the heel or even from Achilles tendonitis, an inflammation of the tendon at the back of the leg.
Heel pain symptoms can come from inflammatory plantar fasciitis. Due to overuse (from sports or work), flat arches, poor support from shoes or flat feet, plantar fasciitis can be debilitating. Pain is at worst in the morning and can continue all day. Additionally, people with plantar fasciitis may have a small bony projection, called a heel spur, off the front of the calcaneus.
Heel pain treatment in Chestnut Hill, Newton-Wellesley, and the Boston area
You have options, with the help of the foot doctors at New England Podiatry. A simple physical examination of your foot and digital X-rays tells the podiatrist the nature of your problem.
Your podiatrist normally recommends prudent lifestyle strategies to control the inflammation and discomfort from this condition.
These interventions include:
- Losing weight
- Wearing quality shoes with good arch support
- Over-the-counter analgesics
- Stretching exercises, to be performed particularly in the morning
- Custom-made shoe orthotics
- Posterior night splints worn while you sleep to support the Achilles tendon
- Cortisone injections to reduce inflammation
- Physical therapy
Over time, most patients find relief from their heel pain. In resistant cases, non-invasive Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy and surgery may be considered.
What about your heel pain?
Don't suffer from persistent heel pain. Have it correctly diagnosed and treated at New England Podiatry. We have two offices in the Boston area to serve all your lower extremity needs. In Chestnut Hill, phone (617) 232-1752, or for the Newton-Wellesley Hospital office, call (617) 630-8280.
A bunion is a bony protrusion that changes the shape of the front half of the foot. If it forms on one foot, the problem will most likely happen on the other as well. Unfortunately, many people don’t have this foot deformity corrected soon after it begins to appear. No matter the stage of bunion formation, treatments are available at New England Podiatry in Chestnut Hill and Newton-Wellesley, MA, and serving patients in Boston, Metro West and North and South Shores, to help patients get relief.
How Bunions Form
Bunions often hurt due to wearing tight, ill-fitting shoes. For example, some pointed-toe shoes crush the toes into a triangular shape over time, causing the bone on the side of the foot to push outward. Some patients have a family history of foot bunions because of the way their feet are structured. A bunion deformity may also be present at birth, which is why some school children have this foot issue. Patients who have arthritis and other degenerative conditions may struggle with this problem.
Patients are often inspired to seek treatment for bunions because of the way they make the feet look. The deformity looks like an unusual growth on the foot, which can be embarrassing when wearing sandals and similar open-toed shoes. You may also have a problem trying on new shoes when you have a bunion. Additionally, because the bunion causes the toes to press together, the big toe often lays on top of the other four. People who have bunions may also develop hammertoes, which can also be treated by our podiatrists.
Bunions: How They Are Treated
Treating a moderate to severe case of a bunion requires time and patience. In many cases, the toe bone can be trained back to its proper alignment using splinting, foot wrapping and other therapies. Padding placed between the toes can also help. Your podiatrist may prescribe rest and activity changes. A foot surgery called a bunionectomy may be the only viable solution in an advanced case of bunions.
Life Without Bunions
If you’ve been plagued with bunions for much of your life, it’s comforting to know that there’s a solution available at New England Podiatry. Call today to schedule an appointment to discuss the ways a podiatrist can help your feet.
If someone has diabetes, it impacts their peripheral circulation, nerve sensation and ability to heal. Feet and ankles are prone to serious wounds and infections-- through injury and prolonged periods of high blood sugar levels. The American Diabetes Association encourages people with Type-1 and Type-2 diabetes to pay close attention to their feet through a daily self-care routine. Your podiatrists at New England Podiatry in Boston, MA, avidly support this philosophy. Read here about how people with diabetes can have healthy, mobile feet.
You only have two feet
And, you need to keep them functional, pain-free and strong. If you are diabetic, your Boston, MA, podiatrists ask that you come to New England Podiatry at least twice a year, or as the need arises, for comprehensive foot examinations which will assess any deformities, skin issues, gait problems and existing or developing sores or pressure points. Preventive care from a highly trained foot doctor wards off deep ulcers, Charcot arthropathy (a deformity affecting the ankle), hammertoes, plantar fasciitis, bunions and other deformities.
Common sense strategies
Simply looking at your feet daily allows you to see changes which could develop into big problems if ignored or unnoticed. Watch for any redness, swelling, blisters or skin irritations from pressure created by ill-fitting shoes or poor gait. When you have your shoes and socks off, be sure to:
- Bathe your feet daily with warm water and mild soap.
- Moisturize your feet to avoid dry skin.
- Change your socks daily, and make sure they fit smoothly.
- Put on well-fitting shoes with good support and ample room for the toes to move.
- Note any corns or calluses, but do not treat them at home. Tell your Boston, MA, podiatrist.
- Always wear shoes outdoors to avoid injury.
Additionally, daily exercise as tolerated improves circulation and range of motion in the joints of the foot and ankle. If you smoke, please seek out a smoking cessation program with your primary care physician because cigarettes impair peripheral circulation, a condition which even non-smoking diabetics may struggle with.
Receive the best podiatric care
When you come to New England Podiatry, you'll receive thorough, compassionate care for your feet and ankles. You can reduce your risk of diabetic complications. For your routine examination, please contact either one of our convenient locations. In Chestnut Hill, call (617) 232-1752, and for the Newton-Wellesley Hospital office, phone (617) 630-8280.
If this fungal infection happens to you find out the best methods for eliminating it.
Whether you forgo shower shoes in your gym locker room or you have particularly sweaty feet, there are a variety of risk factors that could lead to athlete’s foot. This fungal infection causes a red, itchy rash on the feet and while the symptoms may only be self-limiting, it’s still important that you treat the problem as soon as it arises. Our Boston, MA, area podiatrists are here to tell you more about this common foot infection and what you can do to get rid of it.
What is athlete’s foot?
This contagious fungal infection (medically known as tinea pedis) is often found on the feet but can spread to other areas of the body. If you notice blistering, itching red patches between the toes or on the soles of your feet then you may be dealing with athlete’s foot. Even though it’s called athlete’s foot, even non-athletes can develop this inflammatory skin infection.
How can you develop athlete’s foot?
Fungus is all around us, so it goes without saying that it’s easy for anyone to develop a fungal infection if they don’t take precautionary measures. Knowing where fungus can thrive is important if you are prone to athlete’s foot.
Fungus loves to live in dark, damp environments such as swimming pools, gym locker rooms and showers, and even the salon where you get your pedicures. Since athlete’s foot is contagious it’s easy for this problem to spread if you come in contact with someone who has it. This is why it’s important to wear shoes and to never go barefoot in these areas where fungus can grow.
How is athlete’s foot treated?
There are many antifungal medications that you can get to treat your infection. In fact, a lot of these medications can be found over-the-counter at your local drugstore. Common athlete’s foot medications include Lotrimin and Lamisil, to name a few.
Of course, it’s always a good idea to talk to one of our Boston, MA, area podiatrists before you start taking any new medications to treat the infection. You should always follow the instructions exactly as they appear on the medication. In most cases, you will continue treatment for several weeks before the infection is fully gone.
If you find that your symptoms are severe, getting worse or don’t respond to at-home treatment then you may need to turn to us for a prescription-strength oral medication to nip the problem in the bud. You will want to seek treatment as soon as possible to ensure that the infection doesn’t continue to spread.
New England Podiatry offers two convenient locations in Chestnut Hill and Newton serving the greater Boston, MA area. We handle everything from athlete’s foot to severe foot deformities (and everything in between). Call us today to learn more from our podiatrists.