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Posts for: March, 2019

By Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia, PC
March 21, 2019
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Foot Injuries  

An unexpected fall or twist can result in an injury of the foot or ankle, such as a sprain or strain. Immediate first aid can help prevent complications, reduce pain and improve recovery.

Rest, ice, compression and elevation--commonly referred to as R.I.C.E.--is the first and best treatment for minor injuries. The following tips can aid in the early treatment of common foot and ankle injuries to help reduce swelling and control the inflammatory process during the initial phase of injury.

Rest: Whether you have a strain or a sprain, rest from any physical activity is essential to protecting your injured ligaments, tendons or muscles from further damage while your body starts the repair process.  Avoid putting weight on the injured foot or ankle as much as possible. In some cases, complete immobilization may be required.

Ice: Gently ice your foot or ankle with ice wrapped in a towel in a 20-minute-on, 40-minute-off cycle for the first few days post-injury. Ice is excellent at reducing inflammation and pain. 

Compression: Applying some type of compressive wrap or bandage to an injured area can greatly reduce the amount of initial swelling.

Elevation: Prop your foot up while lying down or sitting so that it is higher than or equal to the level of the heart.

After a few days of R.I.C.E., many acute injuries will begin to heal. If pain or swelling does not subside after a few days, or if you are unsure of the severity of your injury, make an appointment with your podiatrist. A skilled podiatrist can properly diagnose your injury and recommend the best course of treatment.


By Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia, PC
March 13, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Bunions   Orthotics   Bunionectomy  

5 Treatment Options for Bunions

Treatment For BunionsA bunion is a “bump” on the outer edge of the big toe that forms when the bone or tissue at the base of the big toe joint shifts out of place. Bunions tend to run in families. Footwear choices play a role too. Wearing high heels or tight shoes can cause bunions. Your symptoms can get worse if the bunions are left untreated, so it's best to see a podiatrist. Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers, which has offices in Lake Ridge, VA, and Stafford, VA, offers treatments for bunions. Read on to learn about several treatment options for bunions.

1. Padding- Padding is often the first step in a treatment plan. Padding using materials such as fleecy foam, fleecy web, gel, or felt hallux valgus covers can help protect the skin and joints from footwear friction and rubbing caused by your shoes. Padding the bunions will ease your pain and allow you to continue a normal, active life. Padding also prevents bunions from getting worse.

2. Medication- Your healthcare provider may recommend a prescription medication or over-the-counter pain medicine for the pain. Acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen sodium can help you control the pain of bunions. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin and ibuprofen, can reduce pain and swelling. Be safe with medication. Follow your healthcare provider's directions when taking medication.

3. Custom Orthotics- Custom foot orthotics can be a valuable treatment for bunions. Orthotics can help take the pressure off your toes and alleviate your pain. Custom orthotics will keep your feet, legs and body well-aligned and pain-free, making it possible for you to perform activities and sports better. You can get custom-made orthotics from your podiatrist.

4. Steroid Shots- Steroid shots, or cortisone shots, can also be added to your treatment program. Steroid shots can relieve your pain temporarily. The injections usually comprise a local anesthetic and corticosteroid medication. Steroids work by reducing inflammation and reducing the activity of the immune system. You can get steroid injections at your healthcare provider's office.

5. Bunionectomy- If your symptoms are severe, your healthcare provider may recommend surgery to remove your bunions. The procedure is called bunionectomy. The aim of surgery is to correct the deformity and eliminate pain. Bunion surgery is performed in a surgery center under local or general anesthesia. With all surgical procedures, there are risks and complications, therefore surgery is not usually advised unless nonsurgical treatment methods don't relieve your pain.


Say hello to healthy and happy feet. Call Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers at (703) 491-9500 today to schedule an appointment in Lake Ridge, VA. Call us at (540) 720-0700 to schedule an appointment in Stafford, VA. We can help you get rid of those bunions once and for all. You will experience exemplary service and state-of-the-art care at Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers!


By Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia, PC
March 06, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Is heel pain keeping you down? Pain that occurs following an injury or early in an illness may play a protective role, warning us about the damage we have suffered. SoYour Heel Pain Could Be Plantar Fasciitis what causes heel pain?
 
Plantar fasciitis is a foot condition in which a band of tissue in the sole of the foot becomes inflamed, leading to severe heel pain. The pain can be so bad that it hurts to walk, much less exercise or perform daily activities. If one step causes shooting pain in your heel—especially when you first get out of bed in the morning or stand up after sitting for a long period of time—plantar fasciitis may be to blame. Contact your podiatrist immediately for proper diagnosis and treatment of your pain. 
 

Understanding Heel Pain with Help from Your Podiatrist

Plantar fasciitis, or heel pain, occurs when the plantar fascia is strained over time beyond its normal extension. This causes the soft tissue fibers of the fascia to tear or stretch at points along its length, leading to inflammation, pain and possibly the growth of a bone spur where it attaches to the heel bone.
 
Inflammation may become irritated by shoes that lack appropriate support, mainly in the arch area and by the constant irritation associated with an athletic lifestyle. Resting may provide temporary relief, but when you resume walking you may experience a sudden elongation of the fascia band, which stretches and pulls on the heel. As you walk the pain may lessen or even disappear, but that may just be a false sense of relief, as the pain will often return after prolonged rest or extensive walking.  
 
You can take steps now to avoid heel pain, including:
  • Wear shoes that fit well
  • Wear proper shoes for each activity
  • Do not wear shoes with excessive wear on heels or soles
  • Prepare properly before exercising by stretching and warming up
  • Pace yourself when you participate in athletic activities
  • Don’t underestimate your body’s need for rest and good nutrition
  • Lose excess weight
If pain and other symptoms of inflammation persist, you should limit your normal daily activities and contact your podiatrist immediately.