WHAT IS A PODIATRIST?
A podiatrist is a specialist who provides medical diagnosis and treatment of foot, ankle, and lower leg. In addition to undergraduate medical school training, podiatrists also attend graduate school for a doctorate degree in podiatry. Following podiatry school, a 3 year residency is required to become a licensed provider. Podiatrists are required to take state and national exams. Podiatrists must be licensed by the state in which they practice.
WHAT INSURANCES DOES SWENSON FOOT & ANKLE ACCEPT?
Our office accepts a variety of HMOs, PPOs, and other health plans. Please contact our office to verify acceptance of your insurance carrier.
WHAT CAUSES SORE FEET?
Foot pain can be caused by a number of biomechanical, metabolic, and/or combination of structural deformities of the foot, ankle, or legs. Therefore, it is important that your podiatrist perform a thorough exam of your feet, ankles, and legs during the visit. A complete history of any medical problems, medications being taken, past foot, low back, hip or knee problems, surgeries, family history will be discussed. The podiatrist may perform certain in-office test, like X-rays to better assess your foot problem. The more information that is obtained at the time of your visit, then the more simple a task of making the proper diagnosis and treatment regimen to resolve your foot pain will be.
I’M A DIABETIC. WHAT CAN I DO TO PREVENT FOOT PROBLEMS?
Inspect your feet every day, and seek care early if you do get a foot injury. Make sure your a podiatrist checks your feet at least once a year – more often if you have foot problems. Your podiatrist should also give you a list and explain the do’s and don’ts of foot care. Most people can prevent any serious foot problem by following some simple steps. So let’s begin taking care of your feet today.
There are many things you can do to keep your feet healthy.
- Take care of your diabetes. Work with your health care team to keep your blood glucose in your target range.
- Check your feet every day. Look at your bare feet for red spots, cuts, swelling, and blisters. If you cannot see the bottoms of your feet, use a mirror or ask someone for help.
- Be more active. Plan your physical activity program with your health team.
- Ask your doctor about Medicare coverage for special shoes.
- Wash your feet every day. Dry them carefully, especially between the toes.
- Keep your skin soft and smooth. Rub a thin coat of skin lotion over the tops and bottoms of your feet, but not between your toes.
- If you can see and reach your toenails, trim them when needed. Trim your toenails straight across and file the edges with an emery board or nail file.
- Wear shoes and socks at all times. Never walk barefoot. Wear comfortable shoes that fit well and protect your feet. Check inside your shoes before wearing them. Make sure the lining is smooth and there are no objects inside.
- Protect your feet from hot and cold. Wear shoes at the beach or on hot pavement. Don’t put your feet into hot water. Test water before putting your feet in it just as you would before bathing a baby. Never use hot water bottles, heating pads, or electric blankets. You can burn your feet without realizing it.
- Keep the blood flowing to your feet. Put your feet up when sitting. Wiggle your toes and move your ankles up and down for 5 minutes, two (2) or three (3) times a day. Don’t cross your legs for long periods of time.
- Don’t smoke.
Get started now. Begin taking good care of your feet today. Set a time every day to check your feet.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I REPLACE MY RUNNING SHOES?
A good rule of thumb is replacing your running shoes after 250-300 miles of use. This number can change depending on the type of running surface.
HOW CAN I TREAT MY HEEL PAIN?
Heel pain is one of the most common conditions we treat in the office. Frequently it is caused by strain and inflammation to the plantar fascia on the bottom of the foot. Rest, calf stretching, icing, and anti-inflammatory medications often can relieve this pain. If the pain continues, Dr. Swenson has many other treatment modalities available to aid in the healing and recovery of this condition.
MY FEET ARE FLAT. DO THEY NEED TO BE TREATED?
Flat feet can be treated typically by wearing the correct supportive shoe gear. If this does not provide relief, then Dr. Swenson may help by prescribing arch supports or even custom orthotics that you wear in your shoes to help aid in providing more stability and support to the arch of your foot.
I HAVE A HAMMERTOE. WHAT CAN BE DONE TO FIX IT WITHOUT HAVING SURGERY?
A hammertoe is a retracting and “humped-up” appearance of a toe. It is usually caused by an imbalance of the muscles in the foot and improper mechanics of the foot. The easiest, non-surgical treatment would be to purchase a shoe with a “deep” toe box to prevent rubbing on the top of the toe. There are also multiple cushions you can purchase to protect the toe from shoe pressure.
I GET A TINGLING AND NUMB SENSATION IN MY TOES WHEN I WALK. WHAT COULD CAUSE THIS?
The most common reason for a tingling or numb sensation in two adjacent toes is a pinched nerve or a condition called a neuroma. This is an irritation and inflammation of the nerve, usually between the third and fourth toes.
Treatment may include steroid injections and oral anti-inflammatory medications to calm the nerve irritation and a shoe insert to off-load the area. Occasionally, surgery may be necessary.
If you’re concerned with the tingling or numbness you feel when you walk, contact us today to schedule your appointment.