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The Ultimate Guide to Dealing with an Infected Toenail

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The Ultimate Guide to Dealing with an Infected Toenail

Even well-maintained feet can be subject to infection. As we age, infected toenails are often a reality. Nails become dry and brittle and can crack. These cracks in the nails allow fungi to enter and wreak havoc.

A fungus infection can also be caused by a weakened immune system or poor blood circulation to the feet, which is often a symptom of diabetes. Also, athlete’s foot can sometimes spread into the toenail. However, these kinds of fungal infections are rarely contagious to others.

Mild symptoms can often be treated at home with over-the-counter medications. For persistent or severe symptoms, it’s best to consult a physician.

Symptoms of an Infected Toenail

Some of the symptoms of nail fungus include:

  • Thickened nails
  • Discolored nails, white, yellow or brown
  • Brittle or crumbly nails
  • Nails that are distorted in shape
  • Slightly foul smelling nails

Obviously, none of these are ideal conditions for your feet.

Causes of Toenail Fungus

Infected toenails are usually caused by a fungus, called dermatophyte. Although nail infections can happen to anyone at any age, it’s most common in older people with brittle and cracked nails.

Risk Factors include:

  • Being older
  • Reduced blood flow
  • Sweating heavily
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Walking barefoot in damp areas (swimming pools, gyms, and shower rooms)
  • Nail injury
  • Psoriasis
  • Diabetes
  • Weakened immune system

Some of these factors are easy to avoid. Others not so much. So what can you do if an infection occurs?

Home Treatment

1. Vicks VapoRub

A study at Harvard Medical School asserts that Vicks VapoRub, applied daily on the infected toenail, “might be at least as effective as most of the topical treatments for toenail fungus that are available by prescription or over the counter.”

2. Ozonized Sunflower Oil

One study found that Oleozon, or ozonized sunflower oil, when applied topically twice a day, cured 90% of fungal nail infections within three months of use.

3. Snakeroot Extract

Snakeroot plant extract, applied once or twice a week has also been shown to have great success. Traditionally used in Mexico, this plant extract contains encecalin, which has antifungal qualities.

4. Pau d’Arco Tea

Pau d’Arco contains naphthoquinones, which is an antifungal compound. The tea is made from the inner bark of a tree, native to South America. It’s important to note that soaking your feet in the tea, rather than drinking it, is how to apply treatment.

5. Oregano Oil

Mix 2 drops of oregano oil with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and apply to the infected toenail daily for no longer than 3 weeks. Thymol and carvacrol are both found in oregano oil, and both have antifungal qualities.

6. Apple Cider Vinegar

Soak toenails in a 1:2 ratio of vinegar to warm water for 20 minutes a day. The acetic acid in vinegar is antifungal.

7. Tea Tree Oil

Apply tea tree oil with a cotton swab twice daily to the mildly infected toenail. One study found tea tree oil to be just as effective as the antifungal medicine clotrimazole for mild cases.

Prevention

There are many precautions you can take to prevent fungal infections:

  • Wash your hands and feet regularly
  • Moisturize
  • Trim nails straight across to prevent ingrown nails
  • Disinfect your nail clippers
  • Wear absorbent socks
  • Wear shoes made of breathable materials
  • Disinfect shoes regularly
  • Wear flip-flops or water shoes in pool areas and locker rooms
  • Only go to nail salons that sterilize manicure tools after each customer

These are easy tips to follow and are very effective at preventing a nasty infection.

When to See a Physician

See a physician if self-care isn’t working, especially in severe cases and when symptoms are persisting.

Also, if you have diabetes or a weakened immune system, fungal infections can lead to more serious complications, so it’s important to see a doctor right away.

If you have complications from a toenail infection, it might be time to talk to a podiatrist.

Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

5 Tips for Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

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5 Tips for Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

Up to seven out of 10 people with diabetes deal with neuropathy, which can lead to severe pain.

Peripheral neuropathy, the most common in diabetics, typically begins in the legs and feet. This is a reason why those who suffer from diabetic neuropathy are two to three times more likely to experience falls than other diabetics.

Having trouble finding diabetic foot pain relief? Keep reading to learn what steps you can take to enjoy a more pain-free lifestyle.

1. Take the Right Supplements

Low levels of vitamin D are common in diabetics suffering from peripheral neuropathy. Since it’s tough to get your daily recommended amount of vitamin D from your diet, it may be necessary to start supplementing.

Meanwhile, B complex vitamins fight inflammation and promote nerve damage repair. Leafy green vegetables and beef are both high in B complex vitamins.

It may be a good idea to try other natural anti-inflammatories such as omega-3 and alpha lipoic acid as well.

2. Say Goodbye to Smoking

There are many diabetic products that help provide diabetic foot pain relief. But if you’re a smoker, a good way to start getting immediate relief is by kicking the habit.

Nicotine in cigarettes constricts blood vessels and can damage arteries. Therefore, diabetics who smoke actually prevent blood from getting to their limbs, which can contribute to the pain.

By quitting smoking, you improve the circulation in your legs and feet.

3. Exercise Regularly

Believe it or not, there’s evidence showing that exercise mitigates neuropathic pain. It accomplishes this by reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines.

But there are even more ways that exercise helps diabetic foot pain sufferers. Regular exercise can lower your blood sugar and improve your blood circulation.

You can start taking advantage of its benefits by going on short walks every day. However, if you want an intense but joint-friendly workout, try swimming.

4. Enjoy Warm Baths

Research shows that passive heating dilates blood vessels and boosts peripheral circulation. This means that enjoying a warm bath is not only relaxing, but it may also fight against diabetic foot pain.

If you don’t find baths particularly appealing, you can opt for a warm foot soak instead. It will provide similar benefits.

5. Keep Your Stress and Anxiety Levels in Check

Do you find yourself stressed out all the time?

Well, your foot might be suffering as a result. High stress and anxiety levels can actually worsen your pain.

Getting a hold of your stress levels starts with adequate rest and exercise. But you don’t have to stop there.

If massages relax you, feel free to indulge in them when you get the chance. Breathing exercises and meditation may also reduce your stress hormone levels.

Final Thoughts on Diabetic Foot Pain Relief

It’s important to keep in mind that, like with diabetes, a cure for peripheral neuropathy doesn’t currently exist. Any pain medication you take won’t treat the nerve damage itself. But you can manage the pain by employing some of the tips outlined above.

Looking for even more ways to relieve your diabetic foot pain? If so, make sure to check our list of services today.

Everything You Need to Know About Wart Removal

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Everything You Need to Know About Wart Removal

Warts are skin growths that appear due to a virus under your skin. While they aren’t cancerous or necessarily dangerous, they can be embarrassing and unsightly.

Leaving warts on your skin can also cause them to spread, creating even more growths. Wart removal is often the best option for those experiencing these skin growths. Keep reading to learn more about your options.

Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy is one of the most common wart removal treatments. This refers to freezing the wart in order to get rid of it and prevent it from spreading.

This treatment will be done by your doctor in the doctor’s office. It is a relatively short procedure. It can be slightly painful, but since the procedure takes so little time that it’s not much pain.

This method is known for minimal scarring, which makes it good for warts in highly visible areas like on your arms or your face. However, it can cause scarring on darker skin, which is something to keep in mind.

The doctor will apply liquid nitrogen directly to the wart and some of the surrounding area. It may go numb and form a blister, but you should be good to go back to your normal life the minute you leave the office.

A scab will form and fall off within a week of the procedure.

Cantharidin Treatment

Cantharidin is a liquid that causes blisters to form. For wart removal, the doctor will put a layer of cantharidin on the wart that will cause a blister to form underneath the wart and essentially push it up off of your skin.

You’ll wait about a week and go back to see the doctor, where they will then clip the wart off of your skin.

While this treatment isn’t painful, it can cause some itching and irritation around the blister site. But the good news is, there is little to no scarring with this procedure, and the pain is minimal to non-existent.

Excision and Electrosurgery

Electrosurgery involves burning the wart away with an electrical charge. A doctor will use a specialty charge needle to burn the tissue on and around the wart.

You’ll be numbed with a local anesthetic in order to dull any pain you’d feel during the procedure. While a local anesthetic will numb the pain, the actual injection of the anesthetic can be painful.

Oftentimes, curettage or excision techniques will be used alongside electrosurgery. This is where the doctor physically scrapes or cuts the wart tissue off of your normal tissue. You will be numbed with anesthetic for this technique.

The downside to these techniques is that they can leave scars and be more painful than other removal options.

Wrapping Up: Wart Removal Treatments

Having warts removed isn’t necessarily the most fun or exciting thing to happen in your life. However, it can be necessary for your physical and mental health.

Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand some of your options when it comes to wart removal. Feel free to contact us with any questions.

How to Find the Best Podiatrist in Your Area


How to Find the Best Podiatrist in Your Area

When you think about all the time we spend on our feet, it’s no wonder that so many people experience foot pain. Daily activity can put stress on this part of the body, and certain health issues like diabetes can also cause foot problems.

Taking care of your feet should be a health priority, and there are lots of things you can do to ensure foot health. Most importantly, if you do experience issues with your feet, you need to book an appointment with a podiatrist.

Finding the best podiatrist in your area doesn’t have to be a daunting task, and the sooner you book an appointment, the sooner you’ll be on the road to recovery.

Below, we’re sharing a few tips on how you can find the podiatrist that will work best for you so you can get back on your feet–literally.

Read on to learn more.

1. Online Resources

Finding the best podiatrist for you could be as simple as spending some time on the Internet. There are a lot of online resources that will help you locate what podiatrists are in your area.

Podiatric associations can be a good place to start. They typically keep a database of podiatrists who are members of their organization, and make it easy for patients to search podiatrists in their area.

Most pediatric associations will require podiatrists to adhere to a code of ethics as well, so any doctor you find through that resource should deliver the highest quality patient care.

2. Former Patients

Because foot problems are so common–especially among athletes or those with similar medical conditions–you probably know someone who has been to a podiatrist in your area.

Don’t be afraid to reach out to former patients to ask them about their experience with a particular podiatrist. Many will be happy to share. Whether they had a good experience or a bad one, they can help you make an informed decision.

3. Ask Questions

In order to determine if a particular podiatrist will be right for you, you need to have as much information about them and their practice as possible.

Create a list of questions that you want answered, so you can compare all of your options. For example, do they accept your insurance? Do they provide the specific services you need? What is their expertise or training in a particular area?

You should also pay attention to their attitude in answering your questions. Friendly staff who are happy to provide you with the information you request will likely make for a better medical team.

Ready to Book an Appointment with the Best Podiatrist in Your Area?

No one ever wants to have to visit the doctor. But if you do have a foot problem that requires a podiatrist’s attention, you want to do everything you can to ensure you’re getting the best care possible.

Do your research and ask questions so that you can find the podiatrist who will get you on your way to a fast recovery. For more information or to book an appointment, please contact us at any time.

5 Things to Immediately Do After a Foot Sprain

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5 Things to Immediately Do After a Foot Sprain

A foot sprain can be as painful as a break but rather than involving the bones it’s an injury to the ligaments. Rolling, twisting, or turning of the ankle can lead to a sprain.

The ligaments on the outside of the ankles are the most common ones affected by this injury. The ligaments tear and stretch when the ankle is rolled, twisted or turned in an unnatural way.

Initial treatment and first aid for a foot sprain are important. They can help you avoid further damage or injury to the ankle.

Keep reading to know the five most important things to do to treat a sprained ankle.

Symptoms of a Foot Sprain

It’s always a good idea to have your injury evaluated by a doctor. This will ensure you’re providing the proper care and treatment.

If there are no complications from foot sprain you will likely heal with self-care. Consult a doctor if you have any concerns or questions. A doctor can diagnose the injury and confirm the best course of treatment.

The signs and symptoms of a foot sprain may include:

  • discomfort particularly when putting weight on the injured ankle
  • swelling and bruising
  • tenderness when touched
  • sudden pain or popping sensation at the time of injury
  • smaller range of motion and instability

Take note of any new sensations, pain or difficulties experienced after injury.

If you are diabetic make sure you perform a diabetic foot exam. It’s particularly important to be proactive in foot care when dealing with diabetes. Ensure there are no cuts or skin tears that may affect your overall health.

Once you know it’s a sprain you can take some initial steps to care for it.

Many know the prescribed course of treatment for a foot sprain as R.I.C.E.

1. Rest

The strained ligaments need to rest so they can heal. Limit any weight-bearing activities. This can be done through the use of crutches.

Avoid putting any pressure on the affected ankle until it no longer hurts to do so.

2. Ice

Apply ice as soon as possible after the injury. This will help keep swelling down. It’s good to ice it for approximately 15-20 minutes several times a day for the first few days after hurting it.

After a couple days of icing, you should find that swelling has gone down and the ankle is stronger.

Continue to ice four to eight times a day but avoid using any longer than 20 minutes at a time. Icing for too long can cause tissue damage.

3. Compression

Immediately after suffering a foot sprain applying compression is important to minimize swelling. If a compression bandage is not available find another way to provide compression. It can be as simple as tying your shoe tight to apply pressure.

Many people make the mistake of taking their shoe off when they hurt their ankle. They are unable to get it back on because it swells up. High top shoes work well in this situation.

Compression socks are an option if you don’t have shoes or a compression bandage on the injury.

4. Elevate

Elevating the ankle above the heart can reduce swelling and pain. This is especially true when sleeping at night. Use pillows to prop your ankle up allowing fluids to drain and swelling to go down.

This will also help reduce throbbing and pain sensations.

Manage Pain and Monitor Progress

Over the counter pain medications such as Ibuprofen, Advil, naproxen or Tylenol can reduce pain. Use as directed when experiencing discomfort.

Always ensure you consult a doctor about any medications you wish to take. Mention all herbal, OTC or prescribed medications you are currently taking to avoid contraindicated complications.

Prevention Is the Best Medicine

The best way to treat a foot sprain is to prevent it from happening in the first place and avoiding reinjury.

  • Proper footwear for the activity. Good support for the ankle.
  • warm up before physical activity
  • keep muscles limber and strong
  • avoid heels or shoes that don’t fit properly

You don’t have to avoid the things you love to do. You just have to be smart about how you do them.

Check out our blog to learn more about caring for your feet

How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

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How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

In the United States, an estimated 7 million people suffer from a condition called hammer toe. If you are suffering from this problem, you may be wondering how you can correct it. It’s worth exploring hammer toe treatment options, as it can bring long-term relief to the issue.

You don’t have to give over control of your life to reverse the effects of this disorder. There is a solution out there for you ranging from something simple like getting a new pair of shoes, to surgery.

Let’s explore the causes of hammer toe as well as find the right treatment options for you.

What is Hammer Toe?

If you want to understand hammer toe treatment options, it helps to understand how this disorder occurs in the first place. When the deformity develops it happens in the second, third, or fourth toe on either foot.

The toe ends up bending around the middle joint and gains an awkward curvature. The name “hammer toe” comes from the shape the toe takes on after the curve worsens.

Causes

This foot deformity can happen due to a number of circumstances. To understand what kind of treatment method you need it is crucial that you think about how your hammer toe occurred.

Some of the leading causes include:

  • A serious foot injury
  • Wearing shoes that do not fit
  • Constant tension in foot muscles
  • Bunions
  • An arching foot

Hammer Toe Treatment Options

Aside from how your hammer toe occurred, you should also consider the severity of the bend. Treatment will depend on how bad the issue had progressed.

In mild cases, the curvature of the toe can get corrected through simple foot exercises such as picking up small marbles with the toes and changing shoe types. Your best bet is to look for shoes that have plenty of room in the front.

The extra room will allow you to exercise your toes in your shoe and help straighten your toes back out. It is recommended that you shoe inserts to help reduce pain and inflammation during the healing process.

Serious Cases

In serious cases of hammer toe, surgery is the most logical answer. There’s a variety of different surgery types for people looking for a solution to their physical ailment.

One such surgery is an Arthroplasty. This procedure involves removing about half of the joint from the toe so that it can get repositioned and go back to its normal spot.

Some people seek surgery as an option if they are unable to handle the pain that comes with hammer toe. On the other hand, others opt for surgery if they are self-conscious about the appearance of their feet.

Regardless of the reason, surgery is a viable treatment option for those who have severe hammer toe.

What’s Next?

Are you currently suffering from hammer toe and don’t know what to do next? Don’t worry; you’re not alone.

Contact us today so we can help assess your situation. We offer a variety of solutions no matter how the issue started or how severe it has become.

6 Must-Know Tips to Help Prevent Ingrown Toenails

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6 Must-Know Tips to Help Prevent Ingrown Toenails

Few pains in this world beat the pain of an ingrown toenail. The condition sends something of a sting through your entire body, and can be almost unbearable to live with.

While some people are prone to ingrown toenails, others only experience them on rare occasions. Whichever group you fall into, there are things which can be done to prevent ingrown toenails in the future.

Here are 6 must-know tips to help you prevent ingrown toenails.

1. Trim Your Nails

The best way to prevent the existence of ingrown toenails is to trim your toenails right in the first place.

Many people, when trimming their nails, tend to trim them down to the skin. This is improper. What you need to do is leave a bit of nail off of the skin, all the while trimming in a straight line.

Doing this will prevent skin from growing up over your nails.

2. Wear Comfortable Footwear

Wearing comfortable footwear is necessary for a number of reasons, one of which is to prevent nasty ingrown toenails.

Shoes which are too tight either in the front or on the sides tend to crowd your toes together. Because they have no room to move, they are constantly making contact with the shoes themselves.

This constant collision will put stress on the nails, causing them to grow in unpredictable ways.

3. Soak Your Feet

A great way to cease the growth of ingrown toenails, and to keep your feet healthy in general is by soaking them on a regular basis. Soaking your feet will keep both your skin and your nails soft, allowing them to grow in a satisfactory manner.

The best way to soak your feet is with warm water and perhaps a bit of Epsom salt. Essential oils can also help to soothe and moisturize your skin.

4. Prioritize Foot Freedom

Because your shoes tend to put a lot of stress on your toenails, you should do without them as much as possible. The less you wear shoes, the less chance you have of developing ingrown toenails.

When you’re lounging around the house, opt for either bare feet or socks.

5. Don’t Pick at Your Cuticles

If you’ve developed a nasty habit of picking and tearing at your cuticles are toenails, you’ve got to try and stop as soon as possible.

When you pick your nails and cuticles, you make them misshapen. Misshapen nails will grow in most of the time, causing ingrown toenails on occasion.

6. Consult a Podiatrist

If you’ve tried everything but are still having trouble with ingrown toenails, it’s time to consult a podiatrist. A podiatrist will be able to assess your specific case and assist you in a way that best benefits you.

In some cases, podiatrists can perform ingrown toenail surgery. This is a quick surgery which will have you pain-free in close to no time.

We Can Help to Prevent Ingrown Toenails

If you’ve got chronic trouble with ingrown toenails, it might be time to talk to a podiatrist. Do you live in the San Dimas, California area? We here at Pacific Foot & Ankle Associates are the podiatrists you’re looking for.

With years of experience on our side, we know exactly must be done to prevent ingrown toenails from occurring.

Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

5 Basic Foot Care Essentials for Diabetics

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5 Basic Foot Care Essentials for Diabetics

Around 9% of the population has diabetes. One possible complication of diabetes is nerve damage in your feet. This leaves one very susceptible to a foot injury.

Because having diabetes can also lead to struggles fighting off infections, it is important to take proper preventative measures.

Do you have diabetes and want to make sure you avoid potential food injuries? Read below for five basic foot care essentials everyone should know.

1. Skin Checks

This is one of the easiest steps you can take. Try to touch and inspect your feet every day. Keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary. This includes cuts, swelling, or bruises.

Also, make note of any areas that are tender. Don’t forget the sides and in between your toes.

If you have poor eyesight or flexibility that prevents you from checking your own feet, ask a loved one to help you.

Taking a few minutes each day to inspect your feet will help catch any problem early on.

2. Control Your Sugar

Another preventative aspect of basic foot care includes paying attention to your sugar levels. Work to stay within guidelines you have established with your doctor.

To accomplish this, be sure to eat according to your meal plan and pay lots of attention to carbohydrates. Always be consistent with any medication you take as part of managing your diabetes.

Another option for keeping your sugar in check is to do light non-impact exercise. This can be anything from walking and stretching to playing tennis or taking a dance class.

3. Always Wear Shoes

Managing diabetes doesn’t have to be stressful. There are many products available to help handle pain and prevent serious complications.

An important habit to get into is to never go barefoot. This can be hard during warm summer months, but simple injuries can become severe when you have diabetes.

Sometimes a stubbed toe can lead to ulcers. Keep slippers by your bed and always wear sturdy shoes when going outside. Avoid sandals and open-toe shoes.

You should also wear a clean pair of socks each day.

4. Wash and Dry Correctly

In order to keep your feet in good shape, you must properly wash and clean them. Doing this helps get rid of germs that may cause an infection.

Wash both your feet every day with soap. Try not to use hot water because it can damage the skin on your feet. If you have nerve damage in your feet, check the water temperature with your hand.

Gently remove any calluses with a pumice stone.

When finished, dry your feet completely. Rub some lotion to keep the skin soft.

5. Cut Toenails Straight Across

While this tip applies to everyone, it is especially important to those with diabetes. Always cut your toenails straight across. This helps avoid painful ingrown toenails.

Avoid cutting your toenails too short. If you have trouble cutting your own toenails, ask a loved one for help.

Get Started with Basic Foot Care

With these five tips, you are ready to start taking excellent care of your feet. Preventative care will help you avoid serious complications down the road.

If you are ready to get a better handle on your foot care or have some questions, schedule an appointment with us today.

Diabetic Socks: Everything You Need to Know about Them

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Everything You Need to Know about Diabetic Socks

More than 100 million Americans suffering from diabetes or prediabetes. It’s a growing health problem that causes pain and suffering.

One way diabetes causes problems is with the feet. But if you’re not careful, you can actually lose one or both feet because of diabetes.

Which is why diabetic socks are so necessary. Here’s what you need to know about these socks.

These Socks Wick Away Moisture

These amazing socks wick away moisture. This helps to prevent blistering.

But keeping your foot dry if you’re a diabetic is vitally important to your health. Wet feet means you’re more prone to infections.

Diabetic Socks Protect Your Feet

It’s uncomfortable for any sock wearer when the seam of their sock rubs against their shoe. With these socks, there’s no need to worry about additional foot pain because there are no seams.

There is also no elastic so they won’t form lumps in your shoe.

These socks fit snugly so there’s no problem with them falling down on your as you go throughout your day. They also won’t constrict your legs or feet.

They’re designed to minimize friction and pressure points. That means less pain and discomfort throughout your day.

This is great news since it’s recommended that diabetes patients should wear these socks from the moment they wake up until they go to bed at night.

They Offer Support

Diabetic socks are cushioned so you’ll feel supported while you’re wearing them.

You also have choices in what type of support you want in your socks. They come with different levels of padding and in different colors.

For active people who are on their feet for long periods of time, look for socks with adequate heel padding. That will provide long-lasting support and comfort for you.

Sports enthusiasts should choose socks with padding near the toes and heels.

Some socks have an increased thickness made of the same material. Other manufacturers use a special gel.

You can also choose between over-the-calf and over-the-knee socks. This depends on whether you suffer from circulation problems.

The Different Types of Socks Available

Not all socks work the same way. They are each made depending on the needs of the individual wearer. Here are the different types available on the market.

Enter Celiant

This synthetic yarn turns body heat into infrared energy. That energy is then reabsorbed by your body.

Infrared is known to boost the flow of blood, regulate temperature, and enhance cell performance.

Smart Socks

These use fiber optic technology. They incorporate pressure, moisture, and temperature sensors within the socks.

This provides the wearer with real-time feedback via a mobile app. You’ll know when your foot is about to get swollen or may be prone to infections.

You can then make necessary adjustments to avoid harm or pain to your foot.

Silver and Socks

These socks contain threads of silver. The silver minimizes heat loss to keep your feet warm. They also fight off bacterial and fungal infections.

Teflon-Reinforced Yarn

The Teflon is used in the heel and toe areas of the sock. Teflon helps to reduce friction against the skin. It also makes the socks more durable.

Get the Right Help

We’re here to help guide you toward a healthier, more active life with diabetes. Don’t wait until the problems become too big for you to handle alone.

If you’re new to our practice, fill out one of our forms and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

Best Athlete’s Foot Medicine and If You Need It


The Best Athlete’s Food Medicine and If You Need It

If you’ve ever experienced athlete’s foot, you know that the affliction can be painful and uncomfortable. For some, including those with diabetes or a compromised immune system, it can even be downright dangerous.

If you suspect you may have athlete’s foot, you may not know what steps to take next. The good news is that there are treatments available to help curb your symptoms and make the recovery process much easier.

Today, we’re taking a look at the best athlete’s foot medicine, and how to discern if it’s required for your case.

Ready to learn more? Let’s get started!

Learn the Symptoms of Athlete’s Foot

Before you begin researching the best athlete’s foot medicine, you’ll need to figure out whether or not you need it in the first place.

Some of the infection’s telltale symptoms, such as a rash and blisters, may actually signal another skin affliction.

If you experience one or more of these symptoms, check with a foot care professional to get a true diagnosis:

  • Burning, inflammation, and itching between your toes or on the soles of your feet
  • An itchy, blistering rash anywhere on your feet
  • Dry, cracked, exposed or peeling skin on your feet (mainly sides and soles)
  • Discolored, peeling, or dislodged toenails

Understand How It’s Contracted

Consider if you’ve entered into an environment recently where a fungal infection like athlete’s foot might be present. Some of the most common ways to contract the affliction include:

  • Sharing your shoes or socks with someone else
  • Going barefoot in a public place, such as a gym shower
  • Not allowing wet or sweaty feet to dry properly
  • Wearing too-tight shoes for too long

An expert analysis can determine if your symptoms are infection-related, or if another foot problem may be the root cause.

Research the Best Athlete’s Foot Medicine

If you’re diagnosed with athlete’s foot, you’ll want to get started on a treatment plan immediately. Taking quick action can help stop any fungal growth in its tracks and help you heal faster.

While it can be tempting to grab an over-the-counter antifungal cream, keep in mind that this well-meaning approach may be less effective than you hope.

Most of these store-bought creams will provide temporary relief but will not address the core of the issue.

The best athlete’s foot medicine for you will depend on the severity of your case.

Mild Cases of Athlete’s Foot

If your infection is mild, you may be able to solve the problem by improving your foot hygiene.

Wash your feet with soap and water regularly and apply powder to keep your feet dry. Be sure to take notice of the area between your toes!

More Serious Cases

If your case is more severe, or if your mild athlete’s foot doesn’t respond to better hygiene, it’s time to go in for a foot care consultation.

If a fungus caused your infection, a professional can prescribe you a more powerful antifungal medication to address it.

The medication may be a topical one, or you may take it orally, depending on your case.

On the other hand, bacteria might cause your infection, rather than a fungus. While they often cause many of the same symptoms, these are two distinct substances that require different treatments.

If bacteria are the culprits, you’ll take an antibiotic medication to address it.

Professional Foot Care You Can Trust

Healthy feet are critical to your well-being. In fact, your big toe alone helps control your gait, balance, and mobility!

Whether you’re dealing with athlete’s foot or a host of other foot-related injuries and afflictions, you want to work with a professional healthcare expert.

That’s where we come in.

We’re a team of foot and ankle associates dedicated to helping our clients address and overcome myriad needs. From common foot problems to more advanced issues such as those associated with diabetes, we’ve got you covered.

Request an appointment today to get started. We’ll get you back on your feet in no time.