How To Clip Your Nails Properly To Avoid Ingrown Nails

An ingrown toenail may not seem like a big deal, but they can be quite painful! And when inflamed, they can make it exceptionally difficult to walk and usually a surgical procedure to remove the nail to avoid further damage. Today, Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing some important tips to help avoid ingrown toenails.

What Causes Ingrown Toenails?

In many cases, an ingrown toenail is caused by the way the toenails are cut. If they’re trimmed too short or the edges are cut too far back, the skin can grow over the nail and dig into the skin. But while this is a common cause, it’s not the only reason why people develop ingrown toenails.

If you frequently wear tight socks, stockings, tights, or shoes, you’re putting more pressure on the skin surrounding the toenail and probably pushing it against the sharp edges of your nails.

Many people develop an ingrown nail following an injury to the toe. For instance, if you unintentionally drop something on your toe, stub it, or join in activities where the toes are subject to continuous pressure, the nail will probably be impacted.

Dampness in the feet can also soften the skin around the nails so the skin can grow over them. If you spend a substantial amount of time in the water or experience sweaty feet, it provides for the perfect environment for a nail to grow into the skin.

How Can Ingrown Toenails Be Treated?

It’s important to try to avoid infection whenever possible, but sometimes, the nail has to be removed in order to relieve the irritation. This can be accomplished in two different ways.

Doctors will either remove part of the nail or the whole nail. Podiatrists typically prescribe antibiotics to help clear an infection after the nail has been removed, but there are still things you can do to relieve the painful symptoms before seeking professional help.

Always try to cut toenails straight, and wear shoes that let your feet breathe.

If you regularly suffer from ingrown nails but are nervous about having the nail removed, it may be worth consulting with Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists.  Call our office today at (425) 455-0936 to book your visit or schedule an appointment online.

8 Ways That Aging Affects Your Feet

Aging affects your feet just as it does the rest of your body. When you consider the amount of stress we place on our feet throughout our lifetime, it’s easy to see why these issues develop. Today, Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing information regarding 8 effects that aging has on your feet.

Watch out for these aging issues that can occur with your feet!

  1. Dry Skin: Dry skin, particularly on the soles of the feet, is a problem that may necessitate the daily use of moisturizer to prevent cracking. The gradual reduction of collagen, worsened by the absence of proper foot care, can lead to cracked heels and calluses. When left untreated, the cracked skin around the heel can make it uncomfortable to walk or even stand.
  2. Seborrheic Keratosis: Another condition affecting older adults is called stucco keratosis due to its barnacle-like appearance. These raised lesions are often mistaken for warts and they usually affect the top of the toes, feet, and ankles. Although they are not painful, they can be itchy or cause irritation when wearing shoes.
  3. Flat Feet: As you and your feet age, ligaments can begin to stretch out, thereby lessening the height of your arch and leading to a condition referred to as flat feet. The pain tends to increase with activity and is often accompanied by inflammation along the arch and inner ankle. Flat feet can increase the risk of foot and ankle sprains.
  4. Shortened Achilles Tendon: Tendons connect bone to muscle, and if these are shortened due to water loss, you can end up flat-footed because you won’t be able to flex your toes, ankles, and midfoot as well. This is especially true of the Achilles tendon, which connects the calf muscle to the heel bone.
  5. Changes in the Toenails: Toenails typically become brittle and thicker as you age, making them more difficult to maintain. One reason for this is that nails grow slower when hormonal production is decreased.
  6. Hammertoe: Hammertoe is the irregular bend in the joint of one or more of your toes. It is typically the result of wearing high heels or narrow shoes that force the toes deeper into the toe box. They are prone to calluses and corns, and once they mature, they are essentially permanent unless surgery is utilized to realign the toe joints.
  7. Arthritis: Osteoarthritis (OA) also referred to as wear-and-tear arthritis, affects approximately 10 percent of men and 16 percent of women over the age of 60. Risk factors include hammertoe, bunions, obesity, or a previous foot or ankle injury.
  8. Circulation Problems: One of the most common foot and ankle symptoms in older people is inflammation, which is commonly connected with poor circulation, especially in the ankles and feet. Diabetes can also affect circulation, particularly as you get older. Diabetic neuropathy is an additional consequence of long-term diabetes.

If you or a loved one is having issues with the effects of aging feet, contact the office of Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule a consultation. Call our office today at (425) 455-0936 to book your visit or schedule an appointment online.

 

 

 

 

April is National Foot Awareness Month: 12 Tips for Healthy Feet Year Round

It’s April, National Foot Health Awareness Month. This is the month when podiatrists across the country try to shed light on common sources of foot pain, deformity, and disease. Today, our podiatrist, Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing important tips to help you keep your feet healthy and pain-free.

12 Tips To Help Take Care Of Your Feet Properly

Even when nothing appears to be wrong, good foot care requires some diligence on your part. Follow these tips to keep your feet happy and healthy.

  1. Stretch your ankles and feet prior to your workouts to prevent injury.
  2. Always dry your feet completely after bathing, especially between the toes.
  3. Moisturize your feet daily – particularly the heels – to stop the skin from cracking.
  4. Don’t walk barefoot when you’re in public places; scratches and cuts can result in infection and it leaves you an easy target for fungal infection, athlete’s foot, and plantar warts.
  5. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes that provide support to the arch and defend the foot against damage; try to avoid high heels, exceptionally pointy-toe shoes, and flip-flops.
  6. Replace your athletic shoes every six months or 500 miles.
  7. Purchase orthotic inserts to help make your shoes a bit more foot-friendly. You can also visit your podiatrist for custom orthotic inserts.
  8. Maintain a healthy weight through exercise and diet. Extra weight puts pressure on the feet and often leads to foot pain and other problems.
  9. Control your diabetes and have an annual foot exam so your podiatrist can examine your feet for problems such as loss of sensation (neuropathy) and a loss of circulation.
  10. If your child complains of recurrent foot pain, trips frequently or has trouble keeping up with his or her peers in normal sports or activities, take them to see a podiatrist for a thorough assessment.
  11. As you age, your feet typically get wider, flatter and longer. Your shoe size can change as this happens, so be sure to have your feet measured regularly.
  12. If you suffer a foot, ankle or toe injury, get medical attention from a podiatrist, as untreated injuries can cause limited mobility and chronic pain.

If you or your children are experiencing any of these issues, contact the office of Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule a consultation. Call our office today at (425) 455-0936 to book your visit or schedule an appointment online. And celebrate your healthy feet!