Do you have a bump at the base of your big toe? You may have a bunion. Our New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists, Drs. Brandon and Sarah James of Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels, share some information about bunions and discuss treatment options.
What causes bunions?
Bunions form due to a misalignment in the joint at the bottom of your big toe. Due to the misalignment, your big toe leans toward your other toes, causing the bone at the base of the toe to protrude. If you have a bunion, you may experience pain and burning in your big toe and notice that the area around the bunion is red and swollen.
Because walking and standing puts significant pressure on your bunion, you may experience more pain when you're on your feet. Wearing shoes can be uncomfortable if the shoes rub against the bunion. Eventually, you may develop corns and calluses due to the constant friction.
Who gets bunions?
Although bunions are frequently diagnosed in women who wear high heels, the condition can affect anyone. If you regularly wear tight shoes or participate in an activity that puts significant pressure on the front of your foot, such as ballet dancing, you may develop bunions. If you have certain conditions, such as arthritis in your foot, low arches, flat feet or inflammatory joint disorders, your risk rises. When bunions run in families, problems with the structure and balance of your foot may be to blame. Although you may still get bunions no matter what shoes you wear, it makes sense to avoid tight shoes and high heels if many people in your family have had bunions.
How is bunion pain treated?
Choosing wide shoes or those that have more room in the toe area can reduce pain when you walk or stand. Have you tried home treatment but still have bunion pain? When you visit our New Braunfels office, we can offer treatments that will increase your comfort. Treatment may include padding and tapping your foot, prescription anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections, physical therapy and orthotics. If your bunion interferes with your life or pain is severe, surgery may be needed to correct the alignment of your joint.
A visit to the foot doctor can help relieve your bunion pain. Call our New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists, Drs. Brandon and Sarah James of Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels, at (830) 387-4427 to schedule an appointment.
Foot complications can often arise if you aren’t careful. Find out how to keep feet healthy and safe.
Have you just recently been diagnosed with diabetes? If so, you are probably trying to learn everything you can about your condition and how to keep yourself healthy. As you may already know, diabetics are prone to foot problems, from nerve damage to open wounds. Our New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists, Drs. Brandon and Sarah James, have some advice on how to keep feet problem-free.
Keep Diabetes Under Control
While this might sound obvious, the best way to protect your feet and the rest of your body from complications is to make sure that you are getting the proper treatment you need to keep your blood sugar levels in check. Work with your doctor and other specialists to ensure that you are getting the proper medication and treatment to help get your diabetes under control.
Perform Daily Exams
Changes to your feet can happen at any time. This is why it’s so important that you perform a self-exam every day so you’ll be the first to know if there is a problem brewing. Check the soles of your feet, the sides and between toes. Look for wounds, calluses, blisters, cuts, redness or swelling. If you notice any changes or symptoms of a problem call our New Braunfels foot doctors right away.
Always Wear Shoes
While it might feel great to walk barefoot through the house, it’s important that you wear shoes and socks at all times. Why? A lot of people with diabetes also have some form of nerve damage in their feet. Therefore, you may not even notice if you step on something or burn yourself until its too late. Protect your feet from injury by wearing comfortable but protective footwear at all times.
Trim Nails Regularly
One of the best ways to prevent ingrown toenails is to trim the nails regularly. If you are unable to trim your own toenails, don’t worry; we can trim them for you. Nails should always be level with the tips of your toes (trimming them too short may result in pain and other problems). When you do trim the nail, make sure to always cut it straight across rather than at a curve, which can increase your chances of an ingrown toenail.
Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels is here for you whenever you need podiatric care the most. If you have questions about caring for your feet or if you are noticing any worrisome symptoms or changes, don’t hesitate to call us anytime.
When is it time to pick up the phone and visit us for an ingrown toenail?
Getting an ingrown toenail can be painful and most certainly a nuisance, but it’s often easy enough to manage your symptoms until the issue heals itself, right? Well, unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Our New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists, Dr. Brandon James and Dr. Sarah James, provide some insight into when an ingrown toenail may be too much to tackle on your own.
Why do ingrown toenails happen?
There are many reasons why you could be dealing with an ingrown toenail. Of course, one of the most common causes is from not trimming your toenail properly. If you trim your nails too short or cut them at a curve (rather than straight) then you may be prone to developing an ingrown toenail.
Ingrown toenails can also happen if you’ve recently injured the toe (even stubbing your toe counts) or if the shoes you are wearing are just a little too tight.
What are the symptoms of an ingrown toenail?
If you have an ingrown toenail the first symptom you may experience is foot pain around the affected nail. The area may also be red, swollen or tender to the touch.
When should I call my New Braunfels, TX, foot doctor?
While soaking the toe and allowing it time to heal (you better stop wearing those tight-fitted shoes during this time!) can often be all that’s needed to manage your symptoms until the nail is healthy again, there are some circumstances that warrant visiting us for care:
- If soaking the toe in warm water and other at-home measures haven’t improved your symptoms within three days
- If pain gets worse (this could be a sign of infection)
- If the toe becomes severely swollen, is warm to the touch or begins to drain pus
- If you have nerve damage in your feet, diabetes or circulation problems
Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels is dedicated to giving you the foot care you need whenever you need. Whether you are dealing with an ingrown toenail or need diabetic foot care, our New Braunfels, TX, foot specialists are here for you!
Foot stretches help to prevent and treat a number of foot conditions. Dr. Brandon James and Dr. Sarah James at Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels in New Braunfels, TX, offer a full range of podiatric services. Stop neglecting your feet and start implementing these six stretches to your daily regime.
#1- Heel Raises- Stand with both feet about hip-width apart, holding onto the back of a chair for balance. Lift up onto the balls of your feet. Hold this position for a few seconds, then slowly lower your heels.
#2- Toe Curls- While barefoot, sit in a chair with both feet flat on the floor. Curl your toes under, as if you are making fists with your feet. Try to work each toe equally. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax your toes.
#3- MTP Extension Stretch- While seated, place your toes on the floor so that they bend upwards. Press down until you feel the stretch along the bottom of your foot and in your toes. Hold this position for 15 seconds, then relax your foot.
#4- Foot Roll- Take a tennis ball, and roll it back and forth from your heels to your toes. You can also use a frozen juice can or golf ball—your feet will love this, especially if you've been on them all day.
#5- Inversion Stretch- Sit in a chair and cross your legs so that the affected leg is on top. Hold your foot and pull upwards until you feel a stretch along the side of your ankle. Hold this position for 15 seconds, then relax your foot.
#6- Eversion Stretch- Sit in a chair and cross your legs so that the affected leg is on top. Hold your foot and push downward until you feel the stretch along the inner side of your ankle. Hold for 15 seconds, then relax your foot.
Regular checkups by your New Braunfels foot doctor, at least once a year, are the best way to ensure that your feet remain healthy. Call Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels, In New Braunfels, TX, at (830) 387-4427 today to schedule an appointment. The journey to healthy feet starts with you!
Have you been considering a total ankle replacement but aren't sure if it's the right treatment for you? Drs. Brandon and Sarah James, your New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists at Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels, share information that will help you decide.
Why is total ankle replacement surgery performed?
Total ankle replacement surgery offers a way to end your pain and improve your quality of life if more conservative treatments, such as physical therapy, anti-inflammatories or other types of medication, haven't helped. It's usually only recommended if you have difficulty walking, have range of movement issues and suffer from severe pain due to joint damage. Damage can occur if you've been in an accident, had a bone fracture or infection or have osteo or rheumatoid arthritis.
Am I a good candidate for surgery?
Your doctor will decide if surgery is a good choice for you after performing a physical examination and evaluating your test results. You must be in good health, have no current infections, have good skin coverage over your ankle and must have good muscle control. Surgery may not be recommended if you have diabetes, in some cases, as the disease can interfere with healing. Although total ankle replacement surgery is typically performed on older people, the decision to offer the surgery is based on your condition, not your age.
What happens during the surgery?
During surgery, the bones and cartilage in your ankle joint will be replaced with an artificial joint comprised of a bearing made of metal and plastic. You'll receive general anesthesia before surgery begins and will stay in the hospital for one or two nights. A cast or splint will help keep your ankle stable while you recover. Your New Braunfels foot doctor will probably advise you to avoid putting any weight on the ankle for two or three months. Physical therapy may also be recommended.
Total ankle replacement can change your life if you suffer from joint damage. Call Drs. Brandon and Sarah James, your New Braunfels, TX, podiatrists at Foot & Ankle Surgery of New Braunfels, at (830) 387- 4427 to schedule an appointment to discuss your ankle pain.
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