The Effects of Psoriatic Arthritis on the Feet

Psoriatic arthritis or PsA is an inflammatory arthritis that can affect people with psoriasis. Psoriasis is a condition that causes red patches of skin with silvery scales on the body. PsA causes pain, swelling, and tenderness in the joints and can affect one’s toes, toenails, soles, heels, and ankles. A common symptom of PsA is swelling of one or more toes. This is known as dactylitis and gives the toe a sausage-like appearance. In fact, swelling of various parts of the foot is common with PsA and can be accompanied by color changes and extreme tenderness. A heel ailment, called enthesitis, can also affect those with PsA. This is characterized by inflammation at the point where tendons and ligaments connect with the bone and can impact the Achilles tendon and the soles of the feet among PsA sufferers. Nail problems can also occur among people with PsA, especially those who have nail psoriasis. The nails may appear pitted, with ridges, flaking, and discoloration, and there may be a lifting up of the nail. This might happen because of inflammation and cellular disruption caused by PsA. The goal of treating PsA-related foot problems is to reduce pain and prevent permanent damage to bones. If you have PsA and are suffering with foot pain, you might see a podiatrist who can help you in developing a plan of treatment towards living a more comfortable life.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain.  The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it.  Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.

Symptoms

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased Range of Motion

Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.

Risk Factors

  • Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
  • Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
  • Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
  • Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
  • Age – Risk increases with age
  • Gender –Most types are more common in women
  • Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary

If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, SC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Children’s Ankle Sprains and Sports

Ankle sprains are quite common in active children, especially those who participate in sports. A sprain occurs when one or more of the tough, fibrous bands of tissue (ligaments) that hold the ankle bones together get overly stretched. Making sudden changes in direction or rolling the foot over while playing sports can sometimes cause the ankle ligaments to stretch beyond their limits and become sprained. Properly warming up the feet and ankles prior to playing sports can sometimes help to avoid an ankle sprain from occurring. Symptoms of an ankle sprain typically include various degrees of pain (depending on how intense the sprain is), swelling, bruising, and—in severe cases—an inability to put weight on the affected foot. Receiving proper care for an ankle sprain is important, as an improperly healed sprain may lead to further sprains and even chronic ankle weakness. If your child has sprained their ankle, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist for your child to be evaluated and treated properly.  

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, SC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Simple Fall Prevention Methods

Research has indicated that approximately one in three adults fall at least once per year. This can lead to serious foot injuries that can hinder completing daily activities. There are simple methods that can be implemented that may help to reduce falling episodes. When the lighting is improved in the household, it will become easier to see steps and obstacles that may be easy to trip over. Additionally, removing frayed rugs can reduce the number of falls incurred, and it is important to hold on to handrails while going up and down the steps. Many patients find it helpful to install grab bars in the shower and toilet area, and using a non-skid bathmat can provide stability in the shower. When a walker or cane is used, the sense of balance is often increased, and it is beneficial to keep a phone within reach in case a mishap occurs. It is helpful to have routine physical and eye exams performed, and this is needed to monitor existing medication and eyeglasses. If you would like more information about how falling can affect the feet, and effective fall prevention methods, please consult with a podiatrist.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, SC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Stretches That Can Help Flat Feet

People who have flat feet may notice their gait is affected by their abnormal foot structure. The majority of babies are born with flat feet, and the arch generally develops in the teenage years. Adults who have flat feet may have acquired this condition genetically, and certain stretches can be done that may help existing pain and stiffness. There are two shin muscles that contribute to the shape of the arch. An effective stretch is called the “windshield wiper” and can be done by sitting in a chair, followed by lifting the toes toward the shin, and away from the body. After holding this stretch for a few seconds, return to the original position. The toes can be brought up again facing inward toward the body. Many people enjoy practicing the “towel scrunch” by placing their feet on a towel while sitting in a chair. The toes are curled as the towel gets scrunched, and this is continued until the far edge of the towel is under the foot. There are many exercises that can help flat feet, and if you are afflicted with this condition, please consult with a podiatrist.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle Specialists. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, SC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Let the Expert Treat Your Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails can be painful and can make wearing shoes or walking uncomfortable. Seek professional help if you believe you've developed an ingrown toenail and be treated safely.