The feet suffer a lot of daily punishment from walking, running, jumping, and climbing, so consequently, they are vulnerable to many various types of issues.
From traumas to inflammation, various different sorts of damage and malfunctions can lead to foot problems.
The feet are made up of 26 bones each, making them one of the most complicated parts of the body. Nevertheless, according to the College of Podiatry, a person will walk an estimated 150,000 miles in their lifetime, roughly the equivalent of walking around the world six times.
Improper footwear, diabetes, and age are some of the primary factors contributing to foot disorders. This post will highlight some of the most common foot concerns, their causes, and when to seek treatment.
Bunions are foot abnormalities that cause a lump to form on the big toe joint. The big toe may bend slightly inward as a result of this. Bunions are referred to as “hallux valgus” by doctors.
Due to higher pressures from narrow footwear, women are more likely to develop bunions.
Bunions can be caused by wearing shoes that are too tight or too narrow. Tight shoes put strain on the metatarsophalangeal joint (MTP), which connects the foot bone to the big toe bone.
It’s also a risk factor if you have a family history of bunions. Furthermore, several diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis or polio, increase the risk of acquiring a bunion.
Bunion sufferers may experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- visible bump on the side of the foot
- tenderness on or around the big toe
- callus or corn on the bone below the big toe
- difficulty moving the big toe
- pain in the big toe when walking
People with diabetes are more susceptible to blood sugar fluctuations. Diabetic neuropathy is a collection of disorders that cause damage to the foot as a result of diabetes.
High blood sugar levels, especially in the foot, can damage nerves over time. Other variables, such as a history of smoking, drinking, or a family history of diabetic neuropathy, might exacerbate nerve damage.
Numbness, tingling, and discomfort in the foot are all symptoms of diabetic neuropathy. Due to a lack of feeling, this can increase the chance of a person suffering cuts or injuries to their foot.
Diabetic neuropathy can be treated by maintaining good health and blood sugar control. While a doctor cannot repair nerve damage, he or she can suggest treatments to keep it from getting worse.
A diabetic should get their feet examined on a regular basis. They should have their toenails properly clipped and seek medical help if they see any wounds on their feet.
Athlete’s foot is a skin infection caused by a fungus that generally appears between the toes. The infection, on the other hand, has the potential to spread and cause substantial irritation, itching, and even pain.
The fungus that causes athlete’s foot is most typically spread in places where people walk around barefoot, such as a gym, shower, or pool. Fungus thrives in warm, moist environments.
The fungus can grow and spread if you wear shoes that are warm and humid. It can spread to other parts of the body, such as the hands, groin, and scalp, and is very contagious.
Itching, cracking, blistering, and peeling of the feet are all symptoms of athlete’s foot. The problem normally begins between the fourth and fifth toes and expands from there. Cracks in the heels or the skin of the toes are also possible.
A person’s feet should be kept clean and dry, and they should be dried with a separate towel. Antifungal therapies for the feet are available in most drugstores as sprays, powders, or creams.
If the fungus is spreading or getting worse following therapy, a person should consult their doctor, who can prescribe antifungal medications.
Ingrown toenails are caused by the toenail growing into the nail groove, causing substantial pain and discomfort.
Ingrown toenails are most commonly caused by wearing shoes that are too tight. Extra pressure on the toes might be caused by shoes that are excessively thin or too tight at the top.
Other causes include improper toenail trimming, such as cutting toenails too short, or trauma to the foot from activities such as running. A person’s risk of ingrown toenails is further increased if they have a family history of them.
Ingrown toenails cause redness, swelling, pain, and even discharge from the toenail, all of which can suggest the presence of an infection.
Ingrown toenails can be treated and prevented in a variety of methods, including:
- Washing the feet with antibacterial soap and keeping them clean and dry.
- Cutting the toenails straight across after a bath when the nails are soft.
- Avoiding cutting the nails in a rounded pattern, as it can increase the risk of inward growth.
- Wearing shoes that fit well and do not have a pointy tip.
A person should contact a podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon if the toenail is infected or if at-home therapy does not improve the disease. To treat the infection, the orthopedic surgeon or podiatrist may need to remove a piece of the toenail and give medications.
When the plantar fascia on the bottom of the foot gets inflamed, the disease develops. This ligament is in charge of supporting the arch of the foot.
Plantar fasciitis is a painful inflammatory ailment with no obvious reason. Idiopathic plantar fasciitis is the term used by doctors to describe this ailment.
Obesity, a very high arch, tight calf muscles, and engaging in activities that repeatedly stress the heel, such as jogging, are all risk factors.
Plantar fasciitis is a painful condition that affects the bottom of the heel. When you first get out of bed in the morning, this discomfort is usually the worst. The pain worsens as you move about.
Plantar fasciitis may usually be treated at home by most people. Inflammation can be reduced by resting the foot and applying ice. NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium, can help manage pain.
Heel discomfort can be alleviated by stretching the foot fully before and after physical exercise, as well as during the day. Supportive footwear can also help.
If a person’s plantar fasciitis does not improve with these treatments, they can try physical therapy or seek further treatment from a podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon.
A doctor may prescribe custom-made orthotics to provide extra support to the heel, or steroid injections to relieve inflammation.
Blisters are very common, and almost everyone will get them at some point in their people.
They commonly arise after extended hours of walking or jogging, particularly if the feet have been damp or when wearing shoes that do not fit well.
Blisters are elevated fluid-filled pockets that aren’t usually a big deal. It’s preferable not to pop blisters and to let them heal naturally. Applying a bandage to the affected area can bring relief.
Consult a doctor if blisters appear frequently along with flu-like symptoms.
Corns are thickened skin patches that commonly appear on the soles of the feet or between the toes. They are usually painless at first. These zones arise to protect the skin and prevent blisters from forming.
Bunions, hammer toe, and ill-fitting shoes can all create corns. They may become painful over time and should be treated. Corn plasters are over-the-counter (OTC) treatments that relieve pressure on the corn and allow it to heal.
A doctor may prescribe surgical removal in some instances.
An protrusion of calcium between the heel bone and the arch of the foot is known as a heel spur. There are no symptoms in many people, but it can be uncomfortable and cause inflammation in others.
This is a difficult disorder to identify, and confirmation requires medical imaging.
A cold compress, anti-inflammatory injections, over-the-counter pain relievers, rest, and orthotic shoe inserts are all options for treatment.
When the first toe joint points up and the second toe joint points down, it is called a claw toe. This condition might be present since birth, or it can emerge unexpectedly. It may be painless for some people, but it might be unpleasant for others.
Diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and cerebral palsy are all illnesses that can cause claw toe.
Splints, correct shoes, exercises, specific drugs, and, in certain cases, surgery are all options for treatment.
Metatarsalgia is another name for stone bruises. They can arise as a result of high-impact exercises or wearing ill-fitting shoes, or they can be a symptom of an underlying ailment.
The area between your toes and the arch of your foot may seem numb, with intense aches every now and then, as if you have a stone in your shoe. Symptoms can become more severe over time.
Rest, putting an ice pack, and having better-fitting shoes are all common treatments. It is important to see a doctor if the pain does not improve or worsens.