Items filtered by date: January 2022

An ingrown toenail occurs when the nail grows into the surrounding skin on the sides of the nail. This condition can affect people of all ages (even babies). Ingrown toenails can be quite painful and may even become inflamed and infected. Rounding your toenails off when trimming them (rather than cutting them straight across) or cutting them too short can lead to an ingrown toenail. Wearing high heels and improperly fitted shoes that force the toes to squish together can also lead to ingrown toenails. Other possible contributing factors to ingrown toenails include injuries to the toenail, fungal toenail infections, nail deformity, and certain medications which can sometimes cause nail dystrophy. If you develop an ingrown toenail, make an appointment with a podiatrist who can treat your ingrown toenail with a variety of methods, while avoiding possible infection and preventing it from becoming ingrown again.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Kenneth H. Nixon, DPM of Western Reserve Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Stow, OH . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 11 January 2022 00:00

Not All Ankle Sprains Are Alike

You don’t have to be an athlete to sprain your ankle. This common injury can occur whenever the ligaments—which bind and support your ankle and connect bones—get overly stretched or even torn. If you sprain your ankle you may feel pain, notice swelling, and it may be difficult for you to walk. Most ankle sprains are lateral, which means they affect the outside of your ankle. Ankle sprains are graded according to the severity of the sprain as well as the damage caused. Grade 1 sprains involve mild stretching of the ligaments with no tearing. Typically, this type of sprain will produce minimal pain, tenderness and swelling with no joint instability or bruising. There is usually no difficulty walking either. Partial tears, moderate pain/swelling/tenderness and bruising are indicative of a Grade 2 sprain. There may also be difficulty walking and some ankle instability. Grade 3 sprains result in ruptures or tears of the ligament. They can produce severe symptoms of pain, bruising and tenderness. The ankle will be unable to bear weight, and there may be a great deal of instability and dysfunction. If you’ve suffered an ankle sprain and the symptoms do not improve soon after being injured, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist right away. You will receive a full examination and assessment, with an appropriate treatment plan depending on your grade of ankle sprain and other factors.

Ankle sprains are common but need immediate attention. If you need your feet checked, contact Kenneth H. Nixon, DPM from Western Reserve Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains take place when the ligaments in your ankle are torn or stretched beyond their limits. There are multiple ways that the ankle can become injured, including twisting or rolling over onto your ankle, putting undue stress on it, or causing trauma to the ankle itself.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Mild to moderate bruising
  • Limited mobility
  • Swelling
  • Discoloration of the skin (depending on severity)

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

Treatment of a sprain depends on the severity.  Many times, people are told to rest and remain off their feet completely, while others are given an air cast. If the sprain is very severe, surgery may be required.

If you have suffered an ankle sprain previously, you may want to consider additional support such as a brace and regular exercises to strengthen the ankle.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Stow, OH . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 04 January 2022 00:00

Ways to Treat Toenail Fungus

Signs that you may have contracted a fungal toenail infection are rather easy to spot. Typically, you will notice a whitening or yellowing of the nail, and it will appear to be thicker and more brittle. The fungus, known as onychomycosis, is often spread in swimming pools, saunas, gyms, or nail salons – places where you are likely to walk barefoot. Tight socks that hold in moisture may also be a contributing factor. Heat, humidity, and perspiration help spread the infection, which is highly contagious. A few natural remedies that may help reduce the fungus from spreading include applying tea tree, lavender, lemon, or thyme oils to the affected nails. A foot bath with baking soda or white vinegar may help too. However, if the nail condition persists or spreads it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist for an examination and treatment plan.

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact Kenneth H. Nixon, DPM of Western Reserve Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Stow, OH . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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