You have ten toes and ten healthy nails, right? Well, sometimes toenails disappoint and cause discomfort when misshapen and surrounded by swollen skin. At Diamond Podiatry in Bethlehem, Macungie, and Quakertown, PA, your podiatrists call this Onychocrytosis or an ingrown toenail. Common to millions of people across the US, ingrown toenails should be treated to avoid infection and relieve pain.
Causes of ingrown toenails
Usually located on the outer edge of the big toe, an ingrown toenail intrudes on the skin, causing redness, pain, swelling and sometimes, infection. The most frequent reason people develop Onychocryptosis is poor pedicure techniques. When toenails are cut, shaped and rounded at the edges, the skin grows right over the nail, and hence the problem which bothers adults, teens and children alike.
Additional causes are shoes that are too pointed and tight in the toes, improperly fitting socks, poor foot hygiene, injury to the nail bed and even fungal toenails and their cousin, athlete's foot. Some research indicates ingrown nails run in families because, at least in some part, foot structure is inherited.
What you can do
Once you notice ingrown toenail symptoms, act on them right away. A warm soak in a foot bath will soften both the nail and the sore skin. Analgesics such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen relieve pain temporarily. Wear well-fitting sneakers or other shoes with ample room in the toes. Sandals work well during the warm weather.
However, if inflammation and discomfort continue, contact Diamond Podiatry for an appointment. After examining your foot, the doctor may prescribe oral antibiotics to heal infection. Also, he may cut the toenail the appropriate way (straight across and never at an angle).
Finally, if the condition is really bad, your podiatrist may do a simple, in-office surgery called partial nail avulsion. This treatment removes a thin strip of the toenail from top to bottom on the affected side, alleviating friction and pressure.
Stay healthy with preventive measures
To ward off ingrown toenails, wear roomy shoes, wash your feet daily, and make sure your socks fit appropriately and don't bunch up in the toe area. Use a clean nail clipper to trim your nails, but never shape them at the corners the way you do with your fingernails. Cut straight across only.
Find out more
If you're hurting, worried about a toenail or wish to know more about preventing common foot problems, such as ingrown toenails, contact Diamond Podiatry. There's an office near you. In Bethlehem or Macungie, PA, call (610) 865-0311, or in Quakertown, PA phone (215) 529-5222.
Find out how your Bethlehem, Macungie and Quakertown podiatrists can help you with your heel pain
The podiatrists at Diamond Podiatry & Podiatry Associates of the Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem, Macungie and Quakertown, PA, have years of experience and knowledge of how to examine your feet, prescribe the proper course of treatment and resolving issues and problems like heel pain.
Heel and Causes of Pain
The plantar fascia, a connective tissue that extends from the heel bone, across the arch and to the toes, becomes irritated or inflamed, which is when people start to feel pain.
This happens when:
- The foot rolls inward excessively while walking
- The foot subsequently flattens, lengthening the arch, and puts adding tension on the connective tissue
- With time, inflammation occurs
Other causes of heel pain include:
- Heel spurs, a growth on the bone that may be painless in many cases but may also result in chronic pain.
- Arthritis, which is swelling of cartilage and lining in joints.
- Gout, which is the buildup of uric acid salts, a normal byproduct of the diet, in the joints.
There are also other disorders and issues including, collagen disorders, nerve injuries, heel bone abnormalities and tumors.
Caring for heel pain
Here are a few noninvasive options to consider.
- Wear comfortable shoes made of soft rubber.
- Avoid rigorous sports and exercises.
- Stretch your feet out daily.
If all else fails, there's the option of getting a surgical treatment that'll eliminate heel pain and remove connective tissue and heel spurs.
For more information regarding your heel pain, contact the podiatrists of Diamond Podiatry & Podiatry Associates of the Lehigh Valley. Their office is conveniently located in three locations: Bethlehem, Macungie and Quakertown, PA.
Just call at the most convenient location to you:
Bethlehem: (610) 865-0311
Macungie: (610) 865-0311
Quakertown: (215) 529-5222
Do you need foot surgery and aren't sure what to do? Is the pain too much to tolerate? You shouldn't have to deal with any foot trauma.Dr. Robert Diamond, Dr. Brent Bernstein, Dr. Jung Lee and Dr. Eric Bronfenbrenner of Diamond Podiatry & Podiatry Associates of Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem, Macungie, and Quakertown, PA, offer several solutions, including foot and ankle surgery.
More on Foot and Ankle Surgery
Foot and ankle surgery is a podiatric specialty. They treat common foot issues, like bunions, severe problems, like Morton's Neuroma, and detect other foot-related diseases such as diabetes. Other diseases they help treat or manage include arthritis and cardiovascular disease. You need to speak with your Bethlehem, Macungie, and Quakertown podiatrist when you're suffering from foot problems that may persist or affect your overall health.
When you meet with your podiatrist, expect the following questions, especially since your doctor will be assessing the need for foot surgery:
- What are your symptoms? Do you feel a sharp or dull pain, for example?
- How bad are your symptoms?
- Does the pain have an effect on your everyday life?
- How is your response to other treatments, like drugs?
- Do you need special footwear?
Dr. Diamond has years of experience when it comes to dealing with foot problems and can tell you if any of the following should be something worrying, or a simple annoyance:
- Metatarsal Surgery
- Achilles Tendon Disorders
- Morton’s Neuroma
- Hammer Toes
- Ankle Arthritis, which may need ankle fusions, triple fusions, and ankle replacements
- Tibialis Posterior Dysfunction
- Plantar Fasciitis
Foot and ankle surgery has several advantages. It may lead to long-lasting pain relief, give you a greater choice of comfortable footwear, improve function and mobility, and help create aesthetically pleasing feet, depending on the procedure.
If foot pains aren't resolved, foot surgery may be the answer. Contact Diamond Podiatry & Podiatry Associates of Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem, Macungie, and Quakertown, PA, today!
Here are all the office location phone numbers:
Macungie: (610) 865-0311
Quakertown: (215) 529-5222
If you're diabetic, you know how important it is to control your blood sugars, to exercise and to watch your diet. But, do you and your family understand how important proper foot care is? Podiatry Today states that a full 15 percent of diabetics experience dangerous foot ulcers which can lead to localized infections, sepsis and even limb amputation. The professional staff at Diamond Podiatry in Quakertown, PA, wants you to understand diabetic wound care to improve your quality of life and prevent serious complications.
Causes of diabetic foot ulcers
Diabetics are prone to infection, decreased peripheral circulation and impaired sensation in the hands and feet. As such, even a small injury can cause an open sore (even down to the bone), callus build-up around the site, and infection.
Besides trauma to the foot, excess pressure or friction from poorly fitting shoes or bunched up socks can literally wear holes in the feet, particularly on the soles or on bony prominences such as the base of the big toe. Sometimes there's resulting pain. Sometimes the patient feels nothing at all. That's why primary care physicians and podiatrists urge their patients inspect their feet daily, looking for hard or reddened spots, abrasions, blisters or discolorations.
Finally, a big cause of impaired circulation in the diabetic foot is smoking. The doctors at Diamond Podiatry urge diabetics to start a smoking cessation program under the supervision of the primary care physician.
Diabetic wound care in Quakertown
Of course, blood glucose management is key to diabetic wound care. However, if a foot ulcer already has developed, you should see your podiatrist right away for treatment. He will evaluate your wound and chart out a care plan to heal it and to keep another from developing.
These steps commonly help diabetic foot wounds to heal successfully:
- Debridement of the wound This involves in-office removal of infected tissue and treatment with locally applied medications and/or oral antibiotics.
- Callus removal This takes pressure off the ulcer and helps correct gait problems.
- Decreasing pressure on the wound and any other areas prone to ulceration Your podiatrist may fit you with a special soft boot or cast or customized orthotics, or shoe inserts. He may simply recommend shoes which provide better support and more room in the toe box.
You can take control of your diabetes. Avoid foot ulcers with routine at-home care, and if you suspect you are developing a problem, contact Diamond Podiatry right away. The doctors and their staff want you to have the healthiest feet possible and a full, active life.
For an appointment at the Bethlehem or Macungie offices, call (610) 865-0311. In Quakertown, phone (215) 529-5222.
Bunions are something your grandmother used to complain about, right? Well, unfortunately, bunions plague today's American adult, too, with pain, inflammation, redness, and changes in gait. What exactly is a bunion? How can it be treated? And, if you have one, could bunion surgery help? For answers, learn from the experts at Diamond Podiatry in Macungie, Quakertown, and Bethlehem, PA. This team of four board-certified foot surgeons Dr. Robert Diamond, Dr. Brent Bernstein, Dr. Jung Lee and Dr. Eric Bronfenbrenner know this deformity well and can help you overcome it.
Exactly what is a bunion?
A bunion is a bony prominence located at the base of the big toe on the inner aspect of the foot. The location is the metatarsophalangeal joint, and it's particularly susceptible to pressure from tightly-fitting shoes, overuse, high heels, and obesity.
While people of all ages fall prey to the discomforts of bunions, women and the elderly tend to develop them more easily. Also, bunions seem to run in families. So if your grandmother had bunions, you could develop them, too.
Symptoms of bunions
Bunions can cause considerable pain and deformity. To compensate for the discomfort, the affected foot often develops thick skin on the sole or corns and calluses on the bunion itself or on other toes.
As a bunion worsens, it may turn the big toe toward the second and third toe, even overlapping them in extreme cases. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons says that claw toe and hammer toe deformities result from untreated bunions.
Your foot doctor at Diamond Podiatry can tell by physical examination and digital X-rays what treatments would help your bunion. Common sense strategies work in most instances and may include:
- Shoe padding
- Custom-made shoe inserts, or orthotics
- Stretching exercises and physical therapy
- Shoes with low heels, good support, and room in the toes
- Splints to re-align the big toe joint
Your podiatrist will customize a treatment plan based on his findings, your symptoms, and your lifestyle.
When surgery is needed
Bunionectomy is a last resort. However, when deformity, inflammation, stiffness, and pain seem intractable, your foot doctor may recommend it.
Foot surgeons approach bunion correction in a number of ways. Broadly, these operations center on the head of the metatarsal, or foot, bones. The very top of the bone is modified and the joint realigned and fixed in place with a screw or pin.
After surgery and healing, your foot doctor advises a program of physical therapy and stretching. Of course, proper footwear is a must to keep correct gait and avoid tension and pressure on the big toe joint.
Don't wait any longer. Contact Diamond Podiatry for a bunion consultation. In Bethlehem and Macungie, phone (610) 865-0311, and in Quakertown, call (215) 529-5222.
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