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Monday, 18 December 2017 00:00

Preventing Athlete’s Foot Among Children

Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that affects the skin on the foot. While generally not a serious condition, it can be bothersome and is contagious. As a parent, making sure your children maintain proper foot care is an important step in preventing ailments like athlete’s foot. Here are some steps that you should teach your children to help prevent athlete’s foot. Make sure that they wear flip-flops or sandals in public bathrooms and around pools. When they are drying their feet, make sure they dry in between their toes, as athlete’s foot often occurs in this area. Keep your house and their play areas clean. Teach them to not share some items like towels or shoes, as these items may be contaminated already. Finally, check their feet for any symptoms of athlete’s foot such as redness, itchiness, or scaly skin.

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM.  Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Athlete's Foot
Monday, 11 December 2017 00:00

Plantar Warts are Caused By A Virus

When a wart occurs on the bottom of the foot, it is called a plantar wart. Commonly affecting children and young adults, plantar warts are often extremely painful and can make walking very difficult. Caused by the human papillomavirus, the condition may originate in public showers and can develop from a poor immune system. The virus can enter the skin through small cuts on the sole of the foot but may not become visible for several weeks. Resembling a small cauliflower, a plantar wart often has small black dots in the center, which may be hemorrhages under the skin. By avoiding direct contact with infected surfaces such as public pools and shower floors, contracting the HPV virus may be prevented. Treatment may include salicylic acid, cryotherapy, or surgical removal in severe cases. A consultation with a podiatrist is important for the diagnosis and treatment of plantar warts.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about All About Plantar Warts
Wednesday, 06 December 2017 00:00

Before you start dancing...

 

Foot ulcers can be very serious for diabetics, but knowing what to do and look for can help prevent them. A foot ulcer is an open wound on the foot. There are a number of ways they can occur and even the smallest wounds can be potentially very serious for a diabetic. The World Health Organization reports that more than half of all non-traumatic lower limb amputations are due to diabetes. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation, which typically greatly impacts the feet. One consequence of this is that when a diabetic sustains a wound on their foot, it will have a harder time healing and is more likely to become infected. If the wound becomes too infected, there is a chance that amputation may be necessary. To help prevent this, monitor your feet everyday to make sure you have no wounds or abnormalities. Be sure to maintain a healthy diet to help keep your diabetes in check. If you have a wound on your foot, keep off of it, and be sure to visit a podiatrist as soon as possible. A podiatrist can monitor the wound and clean it for you.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Diabetic Foot Care
Monday, 27 November 2017 00:00

Treating and Preventing Cracked Heels

Cracked heels are generally a minor and common – albeit discomforting – foot condition. The heels typically become cracked because of a lack of moisture. Therefore, it is important to moisturize your feet if they tend to become dry. Apply a moisturizer twice daily to help prevent the skin on the feet from becoming cracked. Washing your feet daily in a foot bath can help as well. It is important to keep the foot dry beyond moisturizing because bacteria and fungus thrive in wet and hot environments, like the feet. Wear socks that allow the feet to breath. Cotton socks are standard wear for most people and should be fine, but synthetic socks generally wick away moisture and allow for better air circulation. Similarly, shoes should be breathable as well.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How do you get them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Monday, 20 November 2017 00:00

Miami Heat Forward Breaks Foot

Miami Heat forward player Okaro White recently broke his left foot. The 6’ 8’’ second year player sustained the injury while performing a layup in a practice drill. The injury will most likely leave him on the sidelines for a couple of months, and he will be undergoing surgery to repair his fractured fifth metatarsal in his foot. Miami Heat general manager Andy Elisburg and president  Pat Riley are currently figuring out the best course of strategy to replace White while he recovers.

A broken foot requires immediate medical attention and treatment. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor  can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Broken Foot Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

A broken foot is caused by one of the bones in the foot typically breaking when bended, crushed, or stretched beyond its natural capabilities. Usually the location of the fracture indicates how the break occurred, whether it was through an object, fall, or any other type of injury. 

Common Symptoms of Broken Feet:

  • Bruising
  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Blue in color
  • Numbness
  • Cold
  • Misshapen
  • Cuts
  • Deformities

Those that suspect they have a broken foot shoot seek urgent medical attention where a medical professional could diagnose the severity.

Treatment for broken bones varies depending on the cause, severity and location. Some will require the use of splints, casts or crutches while others could even involve surgery to repair the broken bones. Personal care includes the use of ice and keeping the foot stabilized and elevated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Sports Related Foot And Ankle Injuries
Wednesday, 15 November 2017 00:00

Wounds that Don't Heal Need to be Checked

Your feet are covered a good part of the day. If you are diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often another sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

Researchers have recently examined data and found that elderly persons who engaged in exercise programs were 49 percent less likely to have an injury caused by a fall. In addition to this impressive result, those who partook in exercise programs and vision exams had 83 percent lower odds of an injury resulting from a fall. Those who took vitamin supplements and had geriatric assessments in addition to exercise programs and vision exams had 88 percent lower odds. This data helps to show that not only did these steps help prevent falls, they also reduced the impact of an injury from a fall.

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 Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor 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 The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Falls Prevention

When it comes to surgery, podiatrists ensure that all nonsurgical options are exhausted first. A bunion is a bony bump that occurs on the joint at the base of the big toe and can be treated with nonsurgical means. Not all bunions are serious or produce symptoms; however, they can become worse over time without treatment. Treatment options that podiatrists typically consider include roomier and comfortable shoes, bunion pads, and anti-inflammatory medication. Better-fitted shoes will help prevent the bunion from pressing up against the inside of the shoe. Bunion pads also help prevent the bunion from becoming compressed. Anti-inflammatory medication can help reduce inflammation and pain. A cortisone shot may be recommended for longer-lasting relief. If these or other options do not produce results, and the pain is severe, a podiatrist may then recommend surgery to treat the bunion.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why do Bunions Form?

Genetics – susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can cause bunions to form

How are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Bunions

While we should all take care of our feet, those who are active should be more proactive when it comes to foot care. Athletes and physically active people generally subject their feet to more stress than an average person normally would. This can increase their risk for foot injury and ailments. Here are some tips that active people can follow to help prevent injury. Make sure to pick the right shoes for the right activity. If you run, running shoes are best; if you play tennis, go with tennis shoes. Picking a quality pair of moisture-wicking socks can also help prevent foot fungus by keeping the feet dry. Runners reportedly also often suffer from dry skin on their feet. To help prevent dry feet, use a good moisturizer. Washing them often is a good way to keep them hydrated while also helping to prevent foot and toenail fungus. If you workout, don’t forget to workout your feet. Strong feet will aid in preventing foot injuries. Upon completing a workout make sure to give your feet time to rest. Finally, if your feet hurt, stop exercising and avoid putting pressure on them. If the pain doesn't go away it is recommended to see a podiatrist.
 

Everyday foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Everyday Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. Without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks.

It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before. For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops. Wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent Athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Every Day Foot Care
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