Relieving Your Foot Care Stress and Concerns

When you’re feeling lousy or have inexplicable pain, not knowing the reason behind it can make the discomfort seem that much worse. However, before you fall into the paranoid well of online diagnosis, allow us—the professionals—the chance to answer your questions and relieve your concerns. Our extensive knowledge and experience with all types of foot-related problems not only can help you understand your pain, but also can convince you to get the proper treatment. Come see what we have to offer.

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  • What is the difference between a stress fracture and a full fracture?

    When considering stress fracture vs. full fracture, remember that both are breaks in your bones that will cause pain and will need some time for the bone to heal. That said, there are some basic differences.

    One is the location of the break. A stress fracture only affects the surface of the outer bone layer. It is a hairline crack or fissure in the hard outer tissue that is usually damaged by repetitive stress or trauma to the bone, such as with running long distances, practicing and playing sports, or other repetitive movements.

    A full fracture goes completely through the bone so it breaks into two (or more) pieces. It usually occurs from a sudden impact: something landing on it, a bad twist of the foot, or landing from a jump are common examples. A crush injury can break the bone in several places, making surgery necessary to repair it with plates, pins or wires. A full fracture can also involve dislocation (where the bones move out of position) and ligament damage, too.

    Bones take about 6 weeks to heal, so with either type of fracture, plan on rest and weight-bearing restrictions for some time. Call Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates in Daytona Beach at (386) 274-3336 (or one of our other Florida locations) for an evaluation of any suspected break.

  • How can I prevent athlete‚Äôs foot?

    Because the itchy rash on your feet is caused by a fungus, the best way to prevent athlete’s foot is to keep them fungus free—easier said than done sometimes! Fungus love moist, warm, dark places—like sweaty feet inside your shoes—so whatever you can do to keep feet clean and dry will make things more inhospitable for them. Here’s what you do:

    • Dry feet well after your shower or water activities (blot with a towel between your toes, too)
    • Use cornstarch or talcum powder on your feet, and antifungal powder if you’ve had an infection
    • Wear shoes and socks that breathe and allow moisture escape
    • Change socks twice a day (or more) to remove dampness from your skin
    • Switch out shoes every day for a fresh pair that has dried for at least 24 hours since last wearing
    • Protect your feet from contact with damp public places (pools, showers, saunas) by wearing flip flops or sandals

    Need more help? The staff at Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates is happy to evaluate an existing infection and prescribe products to treat it and prevent its return. Reach us at one of our Florida coast locations:

    Daytona Beach: (386) 274-3336
    Edgewater: (386) 957-4818
    Orange City: (386) 775-2281
    Port Orange: (386) 788-6333
    Palm Coast: (386) 586-7373

  • What should I look for when buying shoes for children?

    Buying shoes for children can be difficult. You want something that is cute and easy to put on and take off, but do you know the three main characteristics of a good shoe for kids? They are:Shoes for children

    • The shoe bends under the forefoot where your child’s toes bend.
    • It does NOT bend or twist at the shank—the part that goes under your child’s arch in the middle of the foot.
    • The heel is firm and does not collapse when you pinch it on the sides.

    Other shopping hints are to take your child along and have them try on the shoe. Have feet measured each time, as kids’ feet change quickly, and fit to the bigger foot. Ask them if the shoes pinch or rub anywhere, or your child will constantly be kicking them off and running barefoot because they irritate his or her feet. Check current shoes for wear patterns that may give you (or a trained salesperson) clues about what styles might be best for your kid’s feet.

    Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates can tell you if your child has any special foot characteristics to work around. Even better, we have our own store at our Palm Coast location! You can reach The Right Fit Shoe Store at (386) 313-5953 for more information.

  • Is Extracorporeal Pulse Activated Therapy (EPAT) safe?

    Extracorporeal Pulse Activated Therapy is a relatively new treatment method for many types of foot pain, including plantar fasciitis and tendonitis. Because there is no incision, no anesthesia, and no chemical or medication involved, EPAT risks are quite low. This FDA-approved therapy uses low energy sound waves targeted to the affected area to stimulate your metabolism. It causes increased blood flow in the area to speed up the healing process.

    Each EPAT device is the result of extensive engineering research, medical input, and quality control to make the treatment safe and effective. In the hands of properly trained podiatrists, such as those at Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates on Florida’s east coast, side effects are few. Patients may experience some tingling, redness, or minor pain at the treatment spot for a few days, or after a long period of exercise or work. If you have chronic foot pain that is not responding to other conservative remedies, call our Daytona Beach office at (386) 274-3336 and set up a consultation to see if EPAT is for you.

  • How does platelet-rich plasma therapy work?

    Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy uses your own blood to promote the healing of wounds and repair damaged tissue. The procedures starts when a vial of your blood is taken and a portion of it is spun in a centrifuge. This separates out the platelets, which contain proteins called growth factors. When the platelets are recombined with the remaining blood, the solution is richer in these growth factors. The concoction is injected into the affected area of your foot, or applied during surgery, to increase the nutrients needed to bring quicker healing.

    PRP therapy is used for repairing damaged tendons, such as your Achilles or plantar fascia, or to help your tissues heal more quickly after surgery. At Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates, our podiatrists use the latest technology to treat your foot problems conservatively and avoid surgery when possible. Call our office in Port Orange at (386) 788-6333 or check our website for additional locations in the Daytona Beach area.

  • How do I know if my shoes are fitting properly?

    The easy answer to finding great shoes is to come in to Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates’ new shoe store at our Palm Coast, FL, office and let us fit you! We offer two shoe lines that are quality-crafted to give the support, roominess, and cushioning your busy feet need. We follow all the common-sense tips for properly fitting shoes:

    • Measuring your feet
    • Matching shoe size to the larger foot
    • Leaving space at the front
    • Choosing styles that are shaped like your foot and don’t pinch anywhere
    • Making sure they are wide enough for the ball of the foot to fit comfortably
    • Checking that your feet don’t slip on and off your heel when you walk
    • Choosing pairs with soft, flexible uppers, solid soles, adequate arch support, and low heels

    Your part is trying them at home on carpeting for a couple of days to make sure there aren’t any problems. We believe that making sure you have good shoes is part of effective treatment for your foot issues. Come in to our Palm Coast, FL office today, or call (386) 586-7373 for an appointment, and let us keep your feet happy!

  • How do I know if I have a neuroma?

    One of the main symptoms of neuromas—as with any injury—is pain. When you have Morton’s neuroma, you will feel a sharp pain under the ball of your foot. It usually occurs between the third and fourth toes. Also called a pinched nerve or a nerve tumor, this benign swelling of the tissue results from the area being pinched between the bones. Other symptoms include a thick feeling between the toes or the sensation of having a bunched up sock under the ball of your foot. You may also have numbness, tingling, or a burning sensation in your toes.

    If you experiencing pain in your forefoot, contact Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates for a proper diagnosis, as other conditions can have similar symptoms. We have digital X-ray capability right in our office and can quickly pinpoint your problem and devise a treatment plan. Call our Daytona Beach office at (386) 274-3336 today or consult our webpage for other locations and phone numbers.

  • Can neuropathy be treated?

    Nerve damage is caused by many conditions, so neuropathy treatment depends on your specific situation, but yes—this condition can be treated. If your problem is due to vitamin deficiency, it can be addressed with diet and supplements. For pain from pressure on a certain nerve, physical therapy, injections, and surgeryare possible options. When an autoimmune disease like multiple sclerosis is the cause, treating the underlying condition can bring relief to your nerve pain as well. If you have shingles, early injections can avoid letting it progress to a more serious neuralgia.

    With peripheral neuropathy from diabetes, the best treatment requires you to maintain healthy blood sugar levels, because the nerve damage from diabetes is usually not reversible. Medication is often used to address the pain and control other nerve reactions, but these may have undesirable side effects. At Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates, we are using a new technology called Neurogenx that is providing good results using analgesic blocs and electrical stimulation.

    There is hope for nerve pain relief! Call our office in Daytona Beach, FL, at (386) 274-3336 or Palm Coast at (386) 586-7373 to learn more about this new way of treating neuropathy.

  • Can you treat hammertoes?

    There are many treatments for hammertoes that will help relieve your pain. Start with shoe choice. Make sure the toe boxes are wide and high enough to accommodate the bent joint. Keep the heels fairly low, as well—2 inches or less works well. This keeps your foot from being shoved toward the front and cramping the toe in a bent-up position.

    You can buy donut pads that encircle the pointed joint and keep the pressure off from it. Metatarsal pads can also help with this if they are used correctly. You can use ice packs and gentle massage to reduce discomfort.  In the early stages, buddy taping or splinting may help keep the toes straight. We can teach you exercises to help loosen or strengthen opposing muscles, so they are able to hold your toe in a better position. In cases where other remedies don’t work, surgery may be the answer.

    Give Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates a call at one of our five Florida locations and set up an appointment for expert help with your painful toes.

  • Do I have a sprained ankle?

    Check for the following sprained ankle symptoms to determine whether you have this injury. First, notice any pain around the joint. It can range from mild to severe when you stand or move your foot around. Second, look for swelling, especially around the bone on the outside of your ankle. Third, see if there is skin discoloration from bruising. Finally, notice whether the joint looks inflamed (red) or feels warm.

    If you can’t stand on it, have a lot of swelling, or are in extreme pain, don’t wait. Come into Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates for an examination. We want to make sure the ligament is not torn and there are no fractures. With digital X-rays right in our office and treatment for acute injuries within 24 hours, we are your one-stop shop for urgent care of ankle injuries, saving you an expensive trip to the ER. Call (386) 274-3336 in Daytona Beach, or check for our four other convenient locations on our website. Ankle sprains need to heal correctly to avoid ongoing weakness and future problems, so come to the experts and start the road to recovery right away.