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By Crofton Podiatry
September 18, 2018
Category: Children's Feet
Tags: swelling   corns   calluses   blisters   shoes   Sever's disease   gait problems  

Depending on the age of your children, they may or may not be able to vocalize their foot problems to you. Some children might even ignore or hide foot pain or discomfort so that they do not have to “go see the doctor.”

 

Remember: Foot pain is NOT normal for growing children. Pain in the feet or ankles should not be attributed to growing pains. If your child complains of discomfort, it’s more than likely that they have a foot problem that needs attention, such as Sever’s Disease. Bring them in as soon as possible to receive an assessment with our podiatrist.

The following are signs that your child might have a foot problem:

Non-verbal signs:

  • Cranky and keeps touching feet.
  • Does not want to put shoes on and/or does not want you to touch their feet.
  • Wants to be picked up more often, rather than spend time walking or running. Keeps going back to crawling, even after they have become “expert walkers.”

Verbal signs:

  • Complains of foot pain or discomfort (Make sure that their shoes are not too small or too tight).

Visual signs:

  • Redness, swelling, bruising, and/or heat. (After an injury, your child might have some of these symptoms. However, if they won’t go away after a few days of home treatment, there could be a more serious problem.)
  • Blisters, corns, or calluses developing on the feet (Look for these when you have them in the bath or when you are clipping toenails).
  • Toe or foot deformities.
  • Gait problems, such as in-toeing or toe walking. Watch them as they walk to see if something seems abnormal or if they seem to be tripping over their own feet. Some problems do correct themselves as children grow, but it doesn’t hurt to have them checked out.
  • Limping or refusal to run. If feet or ankles are uncomfortable, your children might limp without realizing that they are doing so.

Because children’s bodies continue to develop and grow, it’s best to correct problems before they become worse. Some children need some orthotics to help them feel better, while other children might need surgery to correct a major deformity. Our podiatrist can help you find the best solution for your children’s foot problems.

Make an appointment by calling (410) 721-4505 to see our board-certified foot doctor, Dr. Brad Toll at Crofton Podiatry. Our team is ready to assist you and your family at our Crofton, MD office, which also serves the surrounding Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD areas.

By Crofton Podiatry
September 05, 2018
Category: toe deformities
Tags: corns   bunions   Diabetes   Hammertoes   claw toe   curly toes  

If your toes look different from other people’s toes, there’s a good chance that you have a toe deformity. It can make you uncomfortable to take off your shoes or wear open-toed sandals. Read on to see what kind of toe deformity you might have – and to see if they can be helped.

Bunions and Tailor’s bunions – With this type of deformity, the big toe joint (or the small toe joint) is enlarged. Pressure on the big or small toe joints causes a bony spur to develop. You’ll notice a bump on the side of the joint, which can be painful if it is not cushioned in your shoes. Additionally, bunions can cause the big toes to point toward the other toes, rather than straight.

  • Treatment options include padding in the shoes, toe exercises, and in severe cases, surgery to set the bone straight and remove the bony spur.

Hammertoes – When shoes do not fit properly and the toes are cramped, toes can become bent. The muscles in the toes become tight and can eventually become rigid. Toes form a bent shape and can appear clenched, which is where the name of the deformity comes from. The unnatural shape can make it more likely for you to have pain from corns at the bent joint.

  • Help your toes by buying shoes with roomy toe boxes, using corn pads, and doing toe exercises to strengthen them and make them flexible.

Claw Toe – Certain diseases that damage nerves can cause foot muscles to weaken. This condition causes the toes to curl downward in a claw-like shape. When they are bent out of shape, the joints can become irritated and cause corns to develop.

  • Those with diabetes and alcoholic neuropathy should pay attention to the toes. Early detection is key to easier treatment. Toe exercises and splints can help to keep the toes in the proper shape.

Curly toes, underlapping, and overlapping toes – These deformities are usually present from birth and can be treated early as the foot develops.

  • Stretching, taping, and maybe even surgery can help to release the toes from the curled up shape.

Not all toe deformities are necessarily painful. However, they can cause long-term stress and side effects like corns. Exercising the toes can be very beneficial and can help reduce symptoms. If you need help improving your toe health and confidence, come to see our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll at Crofton Podiatry. Make an appointment by calling (410) 721-4505. Our foot care team is ready to assist you and your family at our Crofton, MD office. We also serve the surrounding areas of Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD. 

Heading to the beach this weekend? Don’t forget to put sunblock on your feet too!

There’s a reason why your skin is the body’s largest organ. It covers every inch of us, giving us information about the outside world, through the magic of touch. But that also means that in addition to soft and cuddly sensations, the skin is also exposed to harsh elements like the sun, rough surfaces, friction from shoes, pathogens, and anything you might be allergic to.

The skin on your feet are susceptible to the following:

  • Blisters, rash, or hives: Allergies can cause your skin to react to certain substances like sock materials or grass. You may feel itchy at the contact location, and pain if blisters occur in response to allergic contact dermatitis.
  • Athlete’s foot: Dry, itchy skin near the toes (as with Athlete’s foot) can be caused by the fungus, tinea. The same fungus can get into the toenails, causing brittle, discolored toenails, or fungal toenails.
  • Rash: Athlete’s foot can be a cause for a rash on the feet, but autoimmune skin diseases like eczema and psoriasis can also cause dry, itchy, scaly skin and rash.
  • Corns and calluses: These are caused by chronic friction, typically on the toes or near the balls of the feet. As a preventative measure, the skin thickens and can become painful and unsightly.
  • Smelly feet: Foot odor usually occurs when there is an overgrowth of bacteria or fungi. They can be contracted in communal areas such as locker rooms or community pools and can live in your socks and shoes. If you tend to sweat throughout the day, especially if you have hyperhidrosis, there’s a good chance that the bacteria and fungi thrive and make things stinky. They can also cause an infection!
  • Infection: Any cuts, scrapes, or large wounds are susceptible to attack by bacteria, fungi, or viruses. Any open skin allows for pathogens to enter and cause problems for your skin, including ulcers.
  • Warts: If you an open wound on your foot comes into contact with a surface in which someone else with warts has touched it, you are at risk of getting warts on your feet too. They can come and go on their own, but warts can become painful and continue to live in your body if not properly treated.
  • Malignant melanoma: While not commonly found on the foot, it is still possible to find an unusual looking mole on your feet, especially if your feet are often exposed to the sun.
  • Dry skin and heels: Just like the rest of your skin, your feet might become dry as well. The most commonly dry area of your feet is the heel. When you’ve got heel fissures, your heels can become dry and cracked, even causing you pain.

If you’ve noticed some changes in the skin of your feet, make an appointment at our Crofton, MD office to see our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll. At Crofton Podiatry, we will use the latest treatment options to assess and take care of your foot and ankle care needs. Our Crofton, MD office serves the surrounding areas of Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD.

 

By Crofton Podiatry
January 16, 2018
Category: Footwear

What does a nurse, line cook, hairdresser, and a member of the Queen’s Guard at Buckingham Palace all have in common? The answer: they stand for the majority (if not all) of their time at work. While standing still or simply walking around doesn’t seem too difficult, it’s more challenging than you think. It’s especially tough on the feet and ankles, as they do not get enough rest to recover throughout the day.

People who stand all day at work tend to have more issues with their legs, feet, and back, especially if they do not maintain a good posture all day (and let’s be honest, who is able to maintain proper posture the WHOLE time – with the exception of the Queen’s guard?). The surfaces are usually hard, so unless you have supportive, cushioned shoes, as well as a cushioned standing mat, your body can feel much more fatigued than the average office desk employee.

So what kind of shoes can help you if you have to stand all day? Consider the following footwear factors when buying your work shoes:

  • Cushion – Look for shoes with more cushion on the insoles than regular shoes. If you have to, add orthotic inserts to give you even more cushioning.
  • Fit – Shoes should fit well. They shouldn’t be too small, narrow, or tight as that can cause problems like hammertoes, bunions, or corns. They shouldn’t be too big either, as your feet will have to strain to stabilize you, causing overuse problems like plantar fasciitis.
  • Support – If you have flat feet or fallen arches, you’ll want to make sure you have good arch support. Otherwise, you may be standing or walking in an overpronated position all day, straining other parts of the feet like your Achilles tendon (causing Achilles tendonitis).
  • Material/Protection – Depending on your worksite, try to choose shoes that are breathable so that they do not get overheated and sweaty, which could lead to foot odor and fungal or bacterial growth. However, if you will be at risk of injury from heavy or sharp falling objects, adhere to the work site’s dress code for shoes and add orthotic inserts as needed. You may also want to change your socks mid-shift if you tend to sweat a lot (like with hyperhidrosis). 

Take breaks when you can, and try to elevate your feet if you are prone to swelling. When you get home, take a warm foot soak and get a foot massage to find relief and rejuvenate your feet for the next workday!

Do you have overuse injuries or pain from your work shoes? Consult with our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll at Crofton Podiatry to get an assessment for the right treatment. Make an appointment at our office in Crofton, MD by calling (410) 721-4505. Our office also serves the surrounding areas of Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD.

By Crofton Podiatry
December 18, 2017
Category: Feet Safety

When you think about it, there are some clearly identifiable dangers to your foot health, such as blunt trauma and sports injuries. But did you know that some of your everyday habits might be posing risks as well? While some are a bit more obvious than others, we encourage you to review the following risk factors to see how much you know about what can be affecting your foot health!

Where you walk:

  • Outdoors – For those who like to be barefoot, you can have exposure to disease and sharp objects.
  • Indoors –When walking on smooth surfaces, you want to be careful of slipping. Older adults, in particular should wear non-slip socks or slippers. However, when walking on carpet, you do not want non-slip soles since they can trip you up.

The Way You walk:

  • Gait – Depending on the way you roll your ankles, the way the feet touch the ground, you may be more prone to having heel or ankle pain. You may want to get a gait analysis done by our podiatrist to screen for risks.
  • Heavy stomping – If you tend to have “lead” feet when you walk, you may be more prone to ankle, knee, and hip pain from the impact on hard floors. Wearing cushioned slippers can reduce the impact experienced by your legs.

Shoes you wear:

  • Size matters! – Be sure that you and your children wear shoes that fit appropriately. If shoes are too small, feet will be crammed and can develop corns and calluses. If shoes are too big, feet can slide around inside and they have to work harder to stabilize you, resulting in sore muscles.
  • Flats, flip flops, high heels, and pointy toe shoes – These do not have adequate support and can lead to injury as well as strained muscles and tendons as your feet and ankles work overtime to keep you stable. High heels put excessive pressure on the balls of the feet as well as cram the toes. This can lead to bunions and other foot deformities, as well as arch and heel pain.

Your workouts:

  • Not stretching your ankles and calves, sudden increases in workout, and high impact activities can all be causes of injury due to your physical activity routines. Overuse injuries, such as plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis are typical foot problems from your workouts. 

Lifestyle and other Risk Factors:

  • Being overweight or obese and/or having a sedentary lifestyle can lead to poor circulation and excessive strain on the feet.
  • Smoking – Among a host of other health problems, you have a higher chance of developing Peripheral Artery Disease, in which plaque builds up in your arteries, making it hard for blood to reach your feet. Your feet can begin to feel pain and be slower to heal injuries.
  • Drinking excessively – This can lead to alcoholic neuropathy, in which there is weakness, pain, and tingling in the hands and feet. Eventually, nerve damage can result in loss of sensation and poor circulation, which means poor healing.

While not a complete list, these are risk factors that you should check often when considering foot health. If you have found that one or more of these may be affecting your foot health, consult with our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll at Crofton Podiatry. Make an appointment by calling (410) 721-4505 to receive a thorough assessment. Contact our dedicated team at our Crofton office, which also serves the surrounding Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD areas.

 




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2411 Crofton Lane, Suite 25
Crofton, MD 21114

Podiatrist - Crofton, Crofton Podiatry, 2411 Crofton Lane, Suite 25, Crofton MD, 21114 (410) 721-4505