Did I Break My Foot? Signs You Need to See a Doctor

Have you ever broken your foot? Chances are, you may have. According to WebMD, “about 1 out of every 10 broken bones occurs in the foot.” This may seem unrealistic, but not when you consider that “25 percent of all the bones in the human body are down in your feet,” according to Foot.com. Furthermore, “when these bones are out of alignment, so is the rest of your body.” Unfortunately, many people ignore problems with their feet because they don’t consider them important, but, as Foot.com points out, your feet are the foundation of your well-being. Read on to learn about the signs of a fracture and find out when you need to see a doctor like Austin podiatrist, Dr. Jeffery LaMour.

Broken Foot Basics

As WebMD describes, “the human foot has 26 bones.” If one or more of these fractures, you have a broken foot. You may think that a break would be obvious, but this is not always the case. Of course, you may have a dramatic crack in the bone, shifting part of it to the side and making the nature of your injury clear. However, it’s also possible to develop a thin, tiny fracture, subtle enough to ignore, but unwise not to treat, as it will most likely worsen as you continue to put pressure on your feet. WebMD labels these “stress fractures…small cracks can form in bones over a longer period of time from repeated stress on the bones.”

There are many potential reasons your foot may break. WebMD reports: “bones usually break when something happens to crush, bend, twist, or stretch” them. Kicking too hard, tripping, falling, or misaligning your feet could all be the culprits of a fracture. You can minimize your risks for a broken foot by avoiding strenuous exercise, wearing appropriate footwear, and seeing your podiatrist for regular checkups.

Sprains Explained

If you’ve ever injured your foot, you may have found yourself pondering: “is it a sprain or a fracture?” These can be difficult to distinguish from each other, and they often occur at the same time. So, what exactly is a sprain? The American Podiatric Medical Association explains that unlike a broken bone, “a foot or ankle sprain is a soft tissue injury. Most often, a sprain occurs when an injury pulls, stretches, or tears the ligaments that connect bone to bone.” If you sustain enough damage to your foot to break a bone, chances are, you’ve also injured your soft tissue, as well. Sprains share many symptoms with fractures (particularly discomfort and swelling), so it can be difficult to tell them apart. However, even if your injury is “just a sprain,” it’s crucial that you see your podiatrist for treatment to heal properly.

See Your Austin Podiatrist If…

When is it time to see your doctor? We recommend coming in for a consultation if:

  • You experience discomfort when walking, running, or putting weight on your foot. However, WebMD points out: “broken bones in the toes cause less pain, and you may be able to walk with a broken toe.”
  • You notice blue, purple, or red discoloration in one or more areas of your foot. Changes in blood flow can indicate damage to the bone.
  • Your foot appears larger. Inflammation is also a symptom of fractures.
  • You notice a loss of sensation in your foot, which may manifest as a cold feeling.
  • Your foot appears visually “misshapen, deformed, or pointing in the wrong direction.”
  • You have other severe injuries to your foot, such as “a large cut or wound near a possible broken bone.”

If you believe you’ve broken a bone in your foot, we are here to help you! We can assist you with any type of fracture. We will take x-rays of your foot to ascertain if it is, indeed, broken, and recommend an appropriate treatment to help you recover.

Did You Break Your Foot?

If you believe you may have broken your foot or suffer from any of the above symptoms, we encourage you to come in to our Austin podiatry practice. Contact us today to find our more and schedule your appointment.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/sports-injuries/did-i-break-my-foot-signs-you-need-to-see-a-doctor/

Best Shoes for Plantar Fascitis Relief

Do you suffer from a stabbing pain in your heels? In addition to being irritating, embarrassing, and unhealthy, this sensation can make it difficult to find comfortable shoes. While high heels are some of the most common culprits, certain sneakers or even flats can hurt your feet. If you’re struggling with sore feet and can’t find the right shoes, never fear! Austin podiatrist, Dr. Jeffery LaMour, is here to help. We can help diagnose your plantar fasciitis and recommend the right shoe styles for your condition. Read on to learn more about plantar fasciitis and find the right footwear for your aching heels.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Although it has a seemingly complex name, plantar fasciitis is actually a relatively basic and unfortunately widespread disorder. As The Walking Company explains: “plantar fasciitis, the most common cause of heel pain, is inflammation of the band of tissue connecting the heel bone to the toes, supporting the arch of the foot.” This band, called the fascia, bears the brunt of the force on your feet. Mayo Clinic describes: “Under normal circumstances, your plantar fascia acts like a shock-absorbing bowstring, supporting the arch in your foot. If tension and stress on that bowstring become too great, small tears can arise in the fascia.” A wide variety of situations can put undue pressure on your fascia: excessive exercise, sitting for too long, standing for hours without rest, weight gain, arch issues, and more.

Symptoms

Many people suffer from plantar fasciitis without knowing the name of this disease. Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • A sharp, stabbing sensation in the bottom of the foot near the heel.
  • “Pain at the beginning of exercise that gets better or goes away as exercise continues but returns when exercise is completed,” reports WebMD.
  • Discomfort upon walking up stairs or “after you stand for long periods.”
  • According to WebMD, “stiffness and pain in the morning or after resting that gets better after a few steps but gets worse as the day progresses.”

If you suffer from any of the above, Dr. LaMour can help diagnose your condition and recommend an appropriate treatment plan.

Fasciitis-Friendly Footwear

Certain shoes can help ease the discomfort of your sore heels. Fasciitis-friendly footwear typically provides two key components: excellent arch support to hold your foot in the proper position, and solid shock absorption, with the strength and suppleness to take the place of your pummeled fascia.

Beat Plantar Fasciitis points out: “do realize that finding a pair of shoes that work with YOUR Plantar Fasciitis is going to be a bit of a trial and error,” since each person’s feet are different, and you’ll also need to factor in the types of activities you do and styles you prefer. Accordingly, the site breaks down fasciitis-friendly shoes into categories: running, walking, tennis, hiking, slippers, flip flops, and dress shoes. The Walking Company also offers dozens of styles of sandals, sneakers, and dressier options that are appropriate for those who suffer from plantar fasciitis. Shoe Finale also ranks the top ten shoes for women and men with plantar fasciitis, as well as categorizing them according to motion control, type, upper material, and number of color options.

How We Can Help

While the above resources are a great place to start, Dr. LaMour can also consult with you to help you find a good pair for your feet. We can also prescribe and custom-fit orthotic inserts for your shoes. While changing your footwear can work wonders, we may also recommend our minimally invasive Topaz Treatment to help your fascia heal and ease your heel pain.

Do You Suffer From Plantar Fasciitis?

Dr. LaMour and our team can help you enjoy healthier, more comfortable feet. If you suffer from plantar fasciitis or another podiatric condition, we’d be delighted to assist you. Contact our Austin podiatry practice today to find out more and schedule an appointment.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/best-shoes-for-plantar-fascitis-relief/

What To Do When Your Toes Won’t Stop Itching

You’ve probably experienced this beyond-irritating phenomenon: you’re minding your own business, sitting in class, chatting with a date, or even giving an important work presentation, and your toes start to itch. No matter how hard you try, you can’t get the thought of scratching them out of your head. This prickling sensation can become more than annoying, disrupting your daily life. At our Austin podiatry practice, Dr. Jeffery LaMour and our team are dedicated to helping patients enjoy excellent foot health. We can help you diagnose your condition and recommend appropriate treatments to help you find relief. Read on to learn more about what to do when your toes won’t stop itching.

Symptoms

If you’re dealing with persistent itching, the most obvious symptom will be the regular urge to claw at your toes just to stop the sensation. However, you may also experience the following:

  • Swelling
  • Discoloration
  • Peeling
  • Soreness
  • leeding
  • Cracks
  • Blistering

Foot Vitals explains: “many of these symptoms arise after the person continually scratches the foot for a long time. It does not take much scratching to turn your skin red and weaken it, making it susceptible to flaking or cracking.” Likewise, “itchy feet are usually an indicator of another problem,” so you should be vigilant for any other abnormal sensations in your feet or body.

Switch Out Your Soap

While we strongly advocate maintaining a cleanly environment for your toes, some of the ingredients in soaps can actually cause itchiness. As Livestrong describes: “soaps that you use to wash your body and clothes can contain fragrances and alcohol. These are drying agents that can leave skin irritated and itchy. Try soaps with natural products or ones that are hypoallergenic…for clothing detergent, use one that is free of perfumes or dyes.” Solving your scratching could be as simple as making a quick trip to the grocery store.

Check for Skin Conditions

Especially if your itching problem extends beyond your toes, it could be part of a larger skin issue. Livestrong advises readers: “consult a dermatologist. The itching you’ve been feeling may be caused by eczema, a skin disease that produces red, itchy patches followed by scaling and flaking of the skin. Another skin disease that can cause severe itching is psoriasis.” The sooner you can begin treatment for these disorders, the better.

Get Rid of Pesky Pests

Since your feet are close to the ground and often uncovered, they can be particularly prone to bug bites. Foot Vitals lists “insect, tick, or flea bites” as potential causes for itchy feet. If you notice bite marks or see these critters around your home, it may be time to start extermination.

Assess Your Allergies

Allergies come in many forms. You may not be sneezing or breaking out in hives, but your itchy feet could be a sign that you’re suffering from allergies. Livestrong points out: “Your feet come into contact with all types of things that can cause an allergic reaction.” Walking in grass or even across a wool carpet could be an explanation for your itching. Staying away from the offending substance should help you heal your toes.

Stop Going Barefoot

One of the most common causes for itchy toes is a fungal infection called Athlete’s Foot. It runs rampant in moist, public places, which is why you should avoid going barefoot in gyms, saunas, spas, or other similar locations. If you’ve been infected, Dr. LaMour can provide medication and other treatments to help you treat your Athlete’s Foot.

Contact Our Austin Podiatry Practice

One of the best things you can do to stop chronic toe itchiness is come and see us! Dr. LaMour and our team would be happy to help you identify what’s causing this irritating symptom so you can alleviate it. To find out more and schedule your appointment, contact us today!

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/what-to-do-when-your-toes-wont-stop-itching/

Foot Anatomy 101: The Basics Behind Your Feet!

Most people take their feet for granted. You probably don’t think about them on a daily basis, but they literally carry you through life. In his To Your Life piece on the subject, Dr. Kevin Wong explains: “After all, [your feet] are the foundation of your body, which means keeping your feet healthy can keep you healthy.” He expands on this by describing the “complex set of steps that makes movement seem smooth and easy…it is truly a symphony of movement when we walk.” This great ability is made possible by the foot’s complex anatomical structure.

Dr. Jeffery LaMour and our team are intensely interested in the magic of feet. As a podiatric practice, we think everyone should know at least a little more about what makes feet so impressive and important. In the following blog, we go over Foot Anatomy 101 so you can better understand and care for what you’re walking with.

Foot Fundamentals

Your feet are much more complicated and carefully calibrated than you might initially realize. In his Everyday Health piece, Eric Metcalf describes: “The American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) considers your feet a marvel of engineering. Together, your feet contain more than 50 bones, accounting for about one-fourth of all the bones in your body.” That’s right—25 percent of your bones for your whole body are contained just in your feet! Metcalfe continues: “And somehow they also make room for more than 60 joints and 200 muscles, tendons, and ligaments that hold them together and help them move.” We could truly go on for days about the hundreds of puzzle pieces that come together in perfect harmony to form your feet. In the following, we’ll have to settle for giving you some of the basics.

These Bones Are Made for Walkin’

28 bones come together to form your feet and allow you to move about. The Arthritis Foundation describes the basic categories of foot bones:

  • Talus – the bone on top of the foot that forms a joint…
  • Calcaneus – the largest bone of the foot, which lies beneath the talus to form the heel bone.
  • Tarsals – five irregularly shaped bones of the midfoot that form the foot’s arch…
  • Metatarsals – five bones (labeled one through five, starting with the big toe) that make up the forefoot.
  • Phalanges (singular: phalanx) – the 14 bones that make up the toes. The big toe consists of two phalanges…the other toes have three.
  • Sesamoids – two small, pea shaped bones that lie beneath the head of the first metatarsal in the ball of the foot.”

These bones function like gears in the elaborate machinery of your feet, allowing you to jump, dance, skip, bike, and beyond. Of course, having so many bones in your feet also makes them particularly vulnerable to fracture. You might not even realize you’ve cracked one of these bones, which is why you should come and see Dr. LaMour if you develop any discomfort or notice anything abnormal with your foot structure. We can diagnose and treat all types of foot fractures.

Great Arches

Dr. Wong asks readers: “do you know how many arches each foot has? If you answered one, you answered like 95 percent of people do – incorrectly. Each foot actually has three arches: one on the inside of the foot, one on the outside, and one across the ball of the foot. These arches are all important and must be functioning properly to facilitate healthy movement and weight-bearing.” Just like a great architectural structure, the curvature of your foot is key. Wearing the wrong shoes, exercising improperly, genetic disorders, or a variety of other factors can cause your arches to be too low (causing flat feet) or too high, which is also unhealthy. If your arches aren’t shaped like they should be, Dr. LaMour can help you correct this.

The Rest

Bones and arches may garner most of the attention when it comes to foot anatomy, but there are many other parts at play in your feet. The Arthritis Foundation explains that, in addition to its impressive 28 bones, each foot contains “30 joints and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments, all of which work together to provide support, balance, and mobility.” We can’t cover all of these (we wish!), but we can shine a spotlight on the superstar tendon of your feet – WebMD explains: “The Achilles tendon connects the heel to the calf muscle and is essential for running, jumping, and standing on the toes.” This tissue, which was the downfall of its mythical namesake, is imminently important, but also particularly prone to injury. Fortunately, Dr. LaMour can assist you if you suffer from tendonitis or another related injury to this important tissue band.

Do You Want to Learn More About Your Feet?

Our Austin podiatry practice is here to educate you and help you enhance your foot health! Contact us today to find out more and schedule your appointment with Dr. LaMour.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/foot-anatomy-101-the-basics-behind-your-feet/

Why is the Ball of My Foot Swollen

The ball of your foot takes the brunt of your foot as you walk, run, dance, and more. This thicker portion of the foot lies between your toes and your heel, and it carries your weight as you move. The ball is already a bigger segment of your foot, but if you notice it getting larger, this could indicate a podiaic problem. Austin podiatrist, Dr. Jeffery LaMour, is available to answer all of your common foot questions so you can take better care of your feet. One query we often hear from our patients is: “why is the ball of my foot swollen?” There are many potential causes for inflammation in this area. In the following blog, we explain a few of the most common reasons for swelling and explain what you can do to address them.

Ball Basics

While we rely on the balls of our feet to carry us through life, many of us may not fully understand what podiatrists call the “metatarsal,” or the conditions that can affect it. Medical News Today explains: “Metatarsalgia, also known as stone bruise, is a type of pain and inflammation that occurs in the part of the foot known as the metatarsal (ball of foot). It often occurs in the metatarsal heads – where the three middle toes meet the ball of the foot. It is a common problem.” Your metatarsal is so vital to your foot function that swelling in the ball of your foot can significantly disrupt your daily life. In addition, the metatarsal is so versatile that there are many related conditions and activities that can affect it.

Medical News Today goes on: “A lot of physically active people suffer from [Metatarsalgia]…the severity of the pain can vary and may affect just one or two toes – sometimes the whole foot or even both feet might be affected.” Although “it is most common in middle aged females,” Medical News Today notes that “Metatarsalgia can affect males and females of all ages.” It makes sense for all of us to know more about the balls of our feet so we can prevent and treat Metatarsalgia.

The Arthritis Answer

Arthritis is a bone condition characterized by swelling and discomfort in the joints. It can affect every area of the body, including the ball of the foot, so inflammation could very well be due to arthritis. Medical News Today writes: “rheumatoid arthritis – swelled joints in the foot, or gout [arthritis caused by uric acid production] can cause Metatarsalgia.” If arthritis is the culprit, Dr. LaMour and our team offer comprehensive arthritic foot and ankle care to help you manage your condition and reduce swelling.

Nailing Your Feet with Hammertoes

Your feet are carefully calibrated systems designed to carry your weight. If one part is malformed, it can affect the rest quite easily. Therefore, a condition known as hammertoes can lead to Metatarsalgia. In this disorder, one of the middle toes is pulled downward, leading the foot as a whole to look like a hammer. Because they don’t distribute the body’s weight properly, hammertoes can stress the metatarsals and lead to swelling in the ball of the foot. In some cases, hammertoes are congenital, but they are often caused by constantly wearing unhealthy shoes that constrict the foot. If caught early enough, Dr. LaMour can help you treat hammertoes with flexible shoes, special exercises, and comforting devices such as cushions. In advanced cases, Dr. LaMour may recommend surgery.

Arch Issues

The curvature of your foot can also have a major impact on the ball of your foot. Foot Smart explains that one of the “common causes of metatarsal imbalances include[s] a high arch or flat feet, either of which places abnormal pressure across your metatarsals.” Genetic conditions, improper footwear, and a host of other factors can cause your arch to be too high or too low. To help re-balance your metatarsals, Dr. LaMour can fit you for custom orthotics, as well as prescribing other treatments as needed.

Metatarsal Management

Arthritis, hammertoes, and arch issues are some of the most likely reasons for metatarsalgia, but there are numerous potential causes for swelling in the ball of your foot. If you notice inflammation in this region, we suggest that you come in and see us for assistance. The sooner we can determine the underlying cause, the sooner we can treat it and restore your foot health.

Find Out Why the Ball of Your Foot is Swollen

Dr. LaMour and our team can help you diagnose your condition so you can find relief from inflammation. Contact us today to learn more and schedule your appointment!

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/why-is-the-ball-of-my-foot-swollen/

My Toe is Purple!

It sounds like a bizarre nightmare: you look down and see that one of your toes has turned purple. This may seem like a strange symptom, but, actually, there are a number of reasons your toes can become discolored. If the tips of your feet have taken on a purple hue, Dr. Jeffery LaMour and our team are here to help. Our podiatry practice can assist you with a wide variety of foot-related ailments so you can enjoy excellent health. In the following blog, we explain the common reasons your toe may have turned purple and describe how we can help you return it to its natural color.

It Could be Purple Toe Syndrome

The name of this disorder speaks for itself. Reference defines it: “Purple Toe Syndrome is a medical condition characterized by the blockage of the blood vessels in the foot, which hinders the flow of blood to the tissues.” You may have noticed that other parts of your body take on a bluish purple color when they become too cold, or if you wear tight clothing, which can cut off blood circulation. The same can happen to a toe.

Reference goes on to explain: “the blockage is usually caused by the build-up of cholesterol or by a lump of plaque [a waxy substance consisting of things such as fatty acids, cholesterol, and calcium] becoming lodged in the blood vessels of the foot.”  This material can “strangle” parts of your foot, limiting blood flow, destroying cells, and causing the area to become purple “in a process known as cyanosis.” Purple Toe Syndrome is a somewhat serious disorder that “develops suddenly and rapidly and may affect many toes on a foot.” In order to treat this syndrome, you may need to have a stent inserted to facilitate circulation, or, in severe cases, Dr. LaMour may recommend surgery.

Crucial Circulation

One of the primary factors in the color of your skin is your blood flow. While Purple Toe Syndrome is more localized, Livestrong points out that “cold, purple feet signal an abnormality with the arterial circulation, the part of the circulatory system that delivers oxygenated blood from the heart to the body organs and tissues…Peripheral artery disease is the most common culprit for these symptoms.” If your feet are discolored due to PAD (Peripheral Artery Disease), they might also appear pale or white when your circulation is poor, and then become “purplish-red as blood rushes back into the foot.”

PAD can be a serious issue, especially since it can affect your whole body, but “PAD of the lower extremities is a treatable condition—and the sooner, the better.” Particularly if you suffer from diabetes or high cholesterol, come and see Dr. LaMour as soon as you notice a purple color in your feet (which may also be accompanied by a cold feeling). We will assess your feet, recommend appropriate treatment, and refer you to an appropriate specialist if needed.

Blood Blues

While Purple Toe Syndrome and PAD may be the most well known, virtually any disorder that can interfere with blood function can cause your toes to turn purple. Livestrong mentions “Buerger disease… an inflammatory condition that affects small-to-medium sized arteries…inflammation of the involved blood vessels triggers formation of clots that obstruct blood flow.” The website also notes: “Acrocyanosis is another uncommon condition characterized by abnormal regulation of blood vessels.”

Similarly, Heal Treat Cure names “poor blood circulation in your blood” and “anemia or low iron in your body” as potential reasons for purple nail beds. The connection between overall blood flow and purple toes is an excellent reminder that your feet are an important part of your holistic health care. If you notice purple toes, definitely come and see us so we can run diagnostic tests and determine the proper course of treatment.

The Flush of Fungus

A fungal infection could be the root of your purple toe, particularly if the tint is in the toenail. Nice Feet describes: “a fungal nail infection can cause discoloration of fingernails and toenails. Toenail fungus can cause the nail to appear dark.” Fungus can create a whole rainbow of toe colors, including purple, yellow, and green, to name a few. If you have a toenail fungus, Dr. LaMour can help you treat it with our advanced Pinpointe™ FootLaser™ and other excellent options.

Toe Trauma

If you’ve recently banged up your feet, your purple toe could be the result of your injury. Bruises often appear purple, and bleeding beneath the toenail can also cause a darker appearance. Dr. LaMour and our team offer a wide variety of options to assist patients with podiatric injuries.

Is Your Toe Purple?

Have you noticed a purple tint to your toe? Dr. LaMour and our team can help you figure out why your toe has changed its color and help you get the treatment you need to return your natural hue. Contact our Austin podiatry practice today to find out more and schedule your appointment!

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-diseases/my-toe-is-purple/

Numb Toes: Why it Happens & What It Means

Have your toes ever gone numb? Numbness in any part of your body can be unsettling and uncomfortable. Loss of sensation in your toes can make it difficult to exercise, walk, or even stand, depending on the severity. In addition, you might think nothing of the numbness, but it could be a symptom of other conditions, so it’s important to pay attention to it, especially if it is more intense or frequent. Austin foot doctor, Jeffery LaMour, and our team are here to assist you with every aspect of your foot health, from heel to toe. We’re happy to answer any questions you have about your feet. In the following blog, we cover the phenomenon of numb toes. We explain why this happens and what it means.

Symptoms

If your toes are numb, you may experience:

  • A complete loss of sensation, so that you can’t feel it when you touch your toes.
  • A cold feeling in your toes.
  •  The perception that ants are crawling on your toes, which is often associated with numbness or an area of the body “falling asleep.”
  • General tingling in and around your toes.
  • A lessened ability to move your toes.

Most likely, if your toes are numb, you’ll know it. If this occurs on a frequent basis or is severe enough to interfere with your daily activities, we recommend that you come in and see Dr. LaMour for assistance.

Numbness and Nerves

To answer questions about why toes lose sensation and what this means, it’s important to understand how nerves and numbness go together. Nerves are the fibers in your body that send messages so you can feel and sense things. If you’re experiencing numbness, this means that something is interfering with proper nerve function. As Medicine Net explains: “numbness of the toes generally is a result of conditions that affect the nerves and/or blood vessels that supply the foot.” While there are many specific circumstances that could be causing numbness, a disruption in nerve transmission (and blood flow, which affects the nerves) is the basic root of the problem.

Common Causes

What in the world is making your feet go numb? There are many potential factors, but some of the most prevalent include:

  • An injury. Trauma to your toes can make them go numb. Livestrong explains: “An injury that causes the tissue in the foot to swell, or causes direct damage to a nerve, can lead to foot numbness.”
  • Flat feet. If your foot doesn’t have a sufficient arch to support your weight and the pressure you exert through activity, the nerves in your feet could become compressed when you move, numbing your toes.
  • Spinal issues. Your spine is a major control center for nerves, so if your toes become numb, it could actually be due to a more general spinal condition. Heathline lists spinal stenosis and a herniated disc as potential causes of toe numbness, for example.
  • Ill-fitting footwear. Wearing shoes that pinch your toes could restrict blood flow and compress your nerves.
  • Colder conditions. If your toes become too cold, this could cause them to go numb.
  • Prolonged sitting or standing. Staying in one place can put undue pressure on your toes and impair the nerves. Wiki How notes: “Often numbness in the feet or toes occurs when you have sitting or standing in one place for a long time…numbness is often triggered by seating positions that pinch the nerves in your legs and/or feet.”
  • Morton’s neuroma. If your numbness is specifically between your third and fourth toes, you could be suffering from a condition known as Morton’s neuroma. This occurs when the tissue becomes denser around a particular nerve.

Dr. LaMour can help you determine exactly what your numb toes mean and why they’re happening when you come see us for an examination. We will conduct thorough assessments to make an accurate diagnosis and create a customized treatment program just for you!

Are Your Toes Numb?

Find out why and what you can do about it! Come see Dr. LaMour at our Austin podiatry practice. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-diseases/numb-toes-why-it-happens-what-it-means/

What Does ‘Arch Support’ Really Mean?

You may have heard the term “arch support” bandied about. Perhaps it was advertised as an important quality in those fancy new running shoes you were considering buying, or maybe you’ve seen shoe inserts at the drug store to help hold up your arches. However, most people likely don’t know what “arch support” actually is. Austin podiatrist, Dr. Jeffery LaMour, and our team are committed to educating patients about their feet so they can take better care of their podiatric health. After all, your feet are in many ways the foundation for your well-being, since you walk, run, skip, dance, and skate through life on them. Having a healthy arch is, in fact, an important facet of your foot health. In the following blog, we explain what “arch support” really means and how you can achieve it.

What is the Foot’s Arch?

The arch is exactly what it sounds like—the curved portion. Just like the carefully designed bend in a bridge, your arch is key to the structure of your foot. Livestrong’s “5 Things You Need to Know About Arch Support” explains: “The arch usually starts just below the ball of the foot and the toes and extends to the heel. The width and length varies, but your arches should be about the same size and shape on both feet. Arches can shift and change as the body grows, so the size and curve of the arch may change from childhood to adulthood.”

This is the general definition of the foot’s arch, but if we’re going to get truly technical, Teach Me Anatomy points out that there are actually three arches in the foot: “two longitudinal [running from the toes to the heel]…and one anterior transverse arch,” which connects the two longitudinal near the ball of the foot. These three arches form a triangle. However, since they are all so interconnected and interdependent, many people simply think of this entire triangle of the foot as its arch.

Arch Analysis

Not all arches are created equal. Arches are much like fingerprints—no two are exactly alike. However, there is a normal range at which your feet can adequately hold your weight and handle the pressure put on them. There are three basic categories of arch: too high, too low, and healthy. Foot Smart explains that you can do a “simple test on yourself” to determine what kind of arch you have (and if yours could be a problem). All you have to do is:

  1. “Get your feet wet.
  2. Stand normally on a flat surface where you can see the imprint of your feet, such as a sidewalk or a newspaper.
  3. Step away from your imprints and look at the wet marks.”

Once you’ve made your footprints, you can tell that “you have a low arch if your imprint shows the entire bottom of your feet….if you have a normal arch, you will see an imprint with the inside curve of your foot missing…[and] you have a high arch if you cannot see anything but your heel and the top of your foot near your toes.”

Of course, for a truly comprehensive understanding of your arches and how they behave, you would need an examination by a podiatrist like Dr. LaMour. We can assess your arches and determine if any treatment or care is necessary.

If You Don’t Support Your Arch

What if you leave your arch unsupported? There are a few symptoms that could result. First off, you’re likely to experience discomfort in your feet. In her Livestrong article, “The Importance of Arch Support,” Lauren Hutchens describes how arches “bear 200,000 to 300,000 lbs. of stress each mile we walk. Arches absorb the brunt of the pressure our bodies thrust upon our feet with each stride.” This is no small job, and repeatedly forcing your foot to bear your weight at an improper angle could definitely take a toll.

If you never develop arches, you suffer from flat feet, which can lead to more severe swelling. Having your arches too high or too low could also cause a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which can be quite painful. Improper arch support could also raise your risk for injury and other foot conditions.

Support Solutions

Dr. LaMour and our team could help you enjoy healthy arches with proper treatment. First of all, it is important to find the right footwear. Hutchens explains that you should wear shoes that support your particular arch type: “support low or high arches with well-fitting, appropriate footwear, particularly for athletic activities. People with low arches should look for shoes classified as ‘motion control,’” while “people with high arches should consider ‘cushioning’ shoes.” Both motion control and cushioning designs gently nudge your foot into proper position. For your convenience, we’ve compiled a list of great shoe brands and styles for all arch types.

In addition, we can custom make orthotic inserts to help you modify your existing shoes for better arch support. If you’re suffering from flat feet, plantar fasciitis, injury, or any other podiatric condition, our team can help diagnose your condition and provide a customized treatment plan.

Find Out More About What Podiatry Really Means

Dr. LaMour and our team are here to answer your foot health related questions. Contact our Austin podiatry practice today to find out more and schedule your appointment!

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/what-does-arch-support-really-mean/

Chronic Ingrown Toenails: Causes & Treatment

Suffering through an ingrown toenail one time is bad enough, but dealing with ingrown toenails all the time is a whole different story. If you find yourself constantly wincing with discomfort as you walk, struggling with swelling, or battling with ingrown infections, it’s time to take charge of your foot health. Chronic ingrown toenails can interfere with your daily life, but they don’t have to. Austin podiatrist, Dr. Jeffery LaMour is here to help you, along with the rest of our experienced, dedicated team. This condition is technically referred to as “onychrocryptosis,” and we can assist you in preventing an treating it. Read on to learn more about the causes and treatments of chronic ingrown toenails. May you never have another!

Do You Have an Ingrown Toenail?

Basically, an ingrown toenail occurs when the nail begins to grow into the surrounding tissue rather than remaining next to it. You might experience the discomfort of an ingrown toenail without realizing what is actually occurring. You may be suffering from this condition if:

  • Your toenail takes on a curved appearance at the edges, or you cannot see the edge of part of the toenail
  • Your toe becomes inflamed around the nail
  • The side of your nail feels sensitive
  • Your toenail begins to look red around the edges
  • You notice a yellow color, pus, or a warm sensation in the surrounding skin (which are signs of infection)
  • The skin of your toenail begins to feel numb

If you experience any of the above, you may have an ingrown toenail. If you notice these symptoms often, this may be a chronic condition for you.

What Causes This Chronic Condition? 

Why would the nail begin to grow into the skin? Some of the most widespread sources of ingrown toenails include:

  • Improper grooming. At least once a month, you should cut your toenails across their entire width using a toenail clipper designed for this purpose. We’ve found that most of our patients who have ingrown toenails are not doing this. Using a pair of scissors or simply ripping the extending portion of the nail with your hand is not an appropriate technique. When you trim your toenails in an uneven manner, they can grow back into the flesh.
  • Toe trauma. If you’ve stubbed your toe particularly hard or suffered an injury to the foot, this might have nudged your nail in the wrong direction.
  • Constricting footwear. Foot.com notes: “tight hosiery or shoes with narrow toe boxes” could cause or worsen ingrown toenails, forcing the nail to grow into the skin because it has nowhere else to go.
  • Foot shape. Although rare, your foot structure might impede healthy toenail growth. Mayo Clinic explains: “having unusually curved toenails” could be a cause.
  •  Toenail fungus. An infection under the nail bed could push the growing nail in a different direction or even begin to split it apart.

No matter the cause of your chronic ingrown toenails, Dr. LaMour and our team can pinpoint and treat it.

Treating Ingrown Toenails

We see and assist many patients with ingrown toenails every year. If grooming or improper footwear is the cause, Dr. LaMour may suggest a simple outpatient procedure to numb the toe, remove the ingrown segment of the nail, and bandage the toe to alleviate the discomfort and put the toenail on the right track. We may utilize this outpatient surgery for ingrown toenails in combination with any other appropriate treatments to repair your foot after an injury. If toenail fungus is the source, we can utilize our state-of-the-art Pinpointe™ FootLaser™ in combination with the above treatment. For foot structural issues, Dr. LaMour can perform a surgery to extract the root of the toenail. We will customize a treatment plan according to your unique needs and preferences.

We Can Help You

You don’t have to suffer through chronic ingrown toenails again and again! Contact our Austin podiatry practice today to schedule your appointment with Dr. LaMour.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-diseases/chronic-ingrown-toenails-causes-treatment/

Why Are My Toenails Yellow?

Have you ever noticed your toenails taking on a yellow hue? You might have assumed that this is normal, but it isn’t. This discoloration could be relatively harmless, but it could also originate under the surface of your toenails and might become more serious if you fail to treat it. Fortunately, Dr. Jeffery LaMour and the rest of our Austin podiatry practice are here to help you better understand and care for your feet. You spend a good portion of every day on them, and they can have an impact on your overall well-being, so you ought to keep them healthy! In the following blog, Dr. LaMour and our team will answer a question patients often ask us: “why are my toenails yellow?”

Symptoms

Most probably, if you have yellow toenails, you’ll know it just by looking down at them. However, there are certain symptoms that often accompany this toenail transformation. Yellowing often occurs alongside:

  • Harder, denser nail texture. Nails might begin to feel heavier, become more difficult to cut, and become visibly thicker.
  • A reduction of shine in nails. Yellow nails also tend to be dull.
  • Changes in nail shape. Your toenails may begin to deviate from their usual form.
  • Small cracks or breaks in the nails. Your nails may appear as if they’re falling apart.
  • Jagged or deteriorating edges.
  • Other health concerns. This may seem odd, but Livestrong reports: “The color and overall health of your nails can be a reflection of your overall health.” The reverse is also true; more general body conditions can cause symptoms related to your toenails.

If you experience any of the above, contact our office for an appointment with Dr. LaMour.

Common Culprits of Color Changes

There are a variety of reasons your nails may become yellow. These include:

  • Fungus. This is by far the most common cause of yellow nails. Livestrong explains: “Yellow toenails are characteristic of a common fungal nail infection called onychomycosis, which affects some 12 percent of the U.S. population, according to the AAD.” In moist conditions—such as within a sweat-filled sock, or walking across a wet, dirty locker room floor—fungi can thrive and infect the tissue beneath your nail. If you don’t treat foot fungus early on, it can eventually take over your toenail, even cracking it.
  • Yellow Nail Syndrome. Yellow nails are the characteristic symptom of a rare systemic disease believed to be genetic. Rare Diseases describes: “Yellow nail syndrome is an extremely rare disorder characterized by malformations affecting the fingernails and toenails, abnormalities affecting the lungs and the airways…and swelling or puffiness.” This is just one of many reasons to contact a podiatrist quickly if you begin to notice yellowing. Enki Village points out: “people with conditions like bronchiectasis, sinusitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and cancer are more likely to develop yellow nail syndrome.”
  • Polish. The most benign beginnings of yellowing nails lie in small, shiny beauty bottles. Red, blue, black, and purple nail polish may be a bold fashion statement, but it can leave behind a considerably less attractive mustard hue.

These are but a few of the most prevalent possible sources of yellowing nails. For a more customized, complete diagnosis, you should come see Dr. LaMour for an examination.

Treatment Options

The treatment Dr. LaMour recommends will depend on the specific source of your discoloration. We often utilize our advanced Pinpointe™ FootLaser™ to treat patients with toenail fungus. Unfortunately, if you suffer from Yellow Nail Syndrome, the color of your nails may be irreversible, but we can recommend options to better care for them and refer you to an appropriate doctor to help you with your other symptoms. If nail polish is the root of your yellowing, Enki Village describes how you can return them to their original color by “buffing your nails lightly,” scrubbing your feet with a little hydrogen peroxide, putting baking soda on your toenails, or even “[applying] toothpaste” with a “nailbrush to scrub your nails gently.” To prevent this yellow after-effect from recurring, you should use one or two base coats of clear polish, which creates a buffer between the dark color and your natural nail. After Dr. LaMour assesses your feet, he will determine which treatment (or combination of treatments) is appropriate for you.

Are Your Toenails Yellow?

Don’t hesitate to call our podiatry practice! A trip to your Austin foot doctor could help you improve your toenail color and protect your overall health. Contact us today! We look forward to hearing from you.

Original Source: https://www.drjefflamour.com/foot-care/why-are-my-toenails-yellow/