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6 signs it’s time to see a foot doctor

1. Ingrown toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when the edges of your toenail pierce the surrounding soft tissue. This can be caused by a number of factors, such as wearing shoes that are too small, suffering a toenail injury, or cutting your toenails on the diagonal or too short.

Foot specialists employ a variety of treatment methods for ingrown toenails, including lifting the nail, partially removing the nail, and removing the nail and the tissue.

If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can infect the bone, leading to serious complications.

2. Heel pain

While the cause of heel pain can be as simple as a pair of stilettos, it can also be something more serious. If you experience persistent heel pain, a good doctor can diagnose and treat everything from bone spurs to gout.

3. Hammertoes

A hammertoe occurs when the joints of the toe curl and get stuck in a contracted position. This irritating condition is often caused by ill-fitting footwear, although genetics and arthritis can also lead to the formation of hammertoes.

Mild hammertoe cases can be treated with pads and insoles, while more severe instances may require surgery.

4. Bunions

A large prominence at the juncture of your foot and the base of the big toe is called a bunion. Because of where they are located, bunions can be very painful during normal walking and may detrimentally affect your gait.

Often hereditary, bunions may begin in early adulthood and grow worse with age. While wearing proper footwear can help prevent bunions, a visit to the podiatrist is in order if your bunions are causing severe pain or interfering with your everyday activities.

5. Swollen feet

Do you believe swollen feet are the price you have to pay for wearing chic shoes? Think again. Ill-fitting shoes can cut off the blood circulation in your feet, leading to trouble with walking and running, skin discoloration, ulcers, and dangerous infection.

A foot doctor can help reduce inflammation via special exercise and massage techniques. He or she can also evaluate you for any underlying conditions.

6. Nail discoloration

Yellow toenails may be a sign that you left your nail polish on for too long. However, discolored toenails may also indicate a nail fungus. A podiatrist can diagnose nail fungus and prescribe a topical medication.

Unfortunately, ignoring symptoms can cause otherwise very treatable conditions to worsen. Consulting with a foot doctor ensures optimal care and healthy feet. Have a foot-related question of your own? Request an appointment with one of our foot specialists today.