Posts for: June, 2017
Just discovered that one of your toenails is purple? Find out what this means.
You just took your shoes and socks off and you suddenly noticed that one of your toenails is purple. What is going on, you may wonder? Should you visit one of our Reston, McLean, Ashburn and Fairfax, VA, podiatrists or is this an issue you can handle all on your own? Find out more about why toenails turn purple and if they require special care.
If you notice a purple toenail this is a sign that there is blood pooling under the toenail. This is usually due to an injury to the toenail. Perhaps you stubbed your toe on something, dropped a heavy object on the nail or clocked your foot while running. When the nail is injured the blood vessels underneath will break open and leak.
Besides an injury to the nail, tightly fitted shoes could also lead to a purple toenail. This is why it’s so important to make sure that your toes have enough room to wiggle and move around no matter what shoes you wear. Wearing proper footwear is not only important for the health of your toenails but your feet, as well.
You may also be more likely to develop a purple toenail if you keep your toenails longer than they should be. If you are an athlete you will want to strongly consider keeping your nails trimmed regularly, as running or playing sports with long toenails can increase your chances of stubbing the toe and damaging the toenail.
While discoloration is often the only symptom people experience, if there is enough blood that has pooled under the nail this can cause some discomfort and swelling. If you aren’t experiencing any pain then you won’t have to do anything about the nail (your toenail will grow out healthy over time).
However, if you are experiencing pain, then our Reston, McLean, Ashburn or Fairfax, VA, foot doctors will need to drain the fluid that’s under the nail. By drilling a tiny hole into the nail we can remove some of the excess blood, which will ease symptoms.
Family Foot and Ankle Center in Reston, McLean, Ashburn and Fairfax, VA, is here to answer all of your questions and address all of your concerns. We provide a comprehensive array of foot care services to meet everyone’s personal needs. Find out more about the services we offer by calling our office today.
Call us at (703) 723-9267 (Ashburn), (703) 273-9818 (Fairfax), (703) 556-8637 (McLean) or (703) 723-2719 (Reston).
Did you know that what you consume could actually be affecting your foot health?
When we sit down to enjoy a meal we sometimes think about how what we eat affects our overall health. While we consider the heart benefits, we might not realize that the food we are about to enjoy can also affect the health of our feet as well. It might sound rather strange to consider, but what we eat affects all parts of the body, feet included. If you want to maintain both good overall health and good foot health, then it’s time to find out just how diet can affect your feet.
The American Diet
While we don’t like to admit it, the American diet is detrimental to foot health, as it often causes an inflammatory response. With all the saturated fats, refined grains, trans fats and added sugar, it’s no wonder that a lot of us deal with inflamed and uncomfortable feet. While some people may have a food sensitivity that causes foot inflammation, for most of us it’s our heavy intake of foods loaded with these bad elements that lead to our foot problems.
The Healthy-Foot Diet
What can you do to promote better foot health? Follow these diet recommendations to reduce inflammation and prevent conditions such as plantar fasciitis from affecting your life:
- Incorporate more omega-3 fats: Next time you go to the grocery store, head to the seafood counter and snag some delicious salmon. Fatty fish like salmon are packed full of omega3s, which stave off inflammation. If you aren’t a seafood lover, then consider taking fish oil supplements to reap the omega3 benefits instead.
- Avoid refined foods: No matter how tempting it might be, sugary snacks and white, processed grains like bread and pasta can wreak havoc on your body’s inflammatory response. However, you don’t have to say goodbye to that weekly bowl of past. Instead, swap it for whole grains and dark, leafy vegetables and stay away from processed, packaged and refined foods. This is particularly important for those with diabetes.
- Say yes for lean meats: While a juicy steak might sound delicious, the saturated fats are anything but healthy for your feet. Instead, you should replace red meats with leaner meats like fish or chicken.
If you notice any foot symptoms that cause you concern, then you should talk to your podiatrist as soon as possible. If you are worried about how your diet is affecting your health then talk to us about foods to decrease inflammation and promote healthier feet. After all, our feet do a lot for us, so isn’t it time you did something for them?
High ankle sprains are uncommon, but treatable with patience and diligent care. Read on to understand why these injuries are especially irregular:
A sprain may not be as serious as a broken bone, but it can be every bit as painful and inconvenient. This is especially true of a high ankle sprain, which is fairly uncommon but typically takes longer to heal than other sprains, making them a dreaded injury for athletes.
What is a high ankle sprain?
High ankle sprains, sometimes called syndesmotic sprains, affect the ligaments connecting the tibia and fibula bones in the lower leg. These are considered "high" in relation to where sprains usually occur; high ankle sprains actually happen above the ankle and are a result of an outward twisting (rather than the inward rotation seen in lateral ankle sprains). These injuries are most often seen in sports that involve "cutting in" football, roller derby, pro wrestling, track and ice hockey, for example.
In most cases, the wellknown and highly effective RICE technique will be implemented:
- Rest - Staying off of the affected leg as much as possible is essential
- Ice - Applying ice packs to the area will help keep swelling down
- Compression - This may involve wrapping with a bandage at home or a doctor immobilizing the area with a cast
- Elevation - The leg should be propped up to the level of the heart. This promotes adequate circulation
Healing from high ankle sprains is dependent on the damage to the ligaments and can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months. Some of these sprains are found to be "unstable" and may require surgery. In most cases, regardless of the injury's severity, patients will use crutches to avoid putting weight on the ankle.
The ultimate goal in treating any sprain is to avoid loss of motion and scar tissue buildup. Your podiatrist will be able to evaluate the damage caused by your high ankle sprain and treat it accordingly.