Health issues that result in pain or irritation in one or both of your feet can compromise your mobility and even diminish your quality of life. While many people turn to pain medication to relieve their discomfort, others are hesitant to take this approach because of the concerning side effects of many types of drugs. Whether you've been suffering from foot pain for a long time or you've recently noticed something that is bothering you, help can come in the form of an appointment with your local podiatrist. This healthcare professional who focuses on feet can diagnose your issue, provide you with the right treatment plan and even suggest ways you can reduce the issue from returning in the future. Here are three reasons to give podiatry a try.
Chronic Ingrown Toenails
While anyone can periodically develop an ingrown toenail, it's worth scheduling a visit with your podiatrist if you find yourself frequently dealing with this nagging issue. Ingrown toenails can cause pain and inflammation in the area to the point that walking becomes uncomfortable. Your podiatrist will assess the nature of the problem and even clip away part of the affected nail to allow it to grow in more naturally. He or she will also identify whether you have an infection that requires medication and talk to you about avoiding ingrown toenails in the future. In many cases, the way in which you trim your nails can prevent ingrown issues.
Presence Of Bunions
A bunion is a large bump located on the outside of the base of your big toe that can cause pain and, ultimately, require surgery if it's not treated in time. If you notice this issue, it's important to schedule a visit with your podiatrist right away. He or she will note the extent of the bunion and provide you with some helpful ways to reduce its size and prevent it from causing you pain while you walk. Typically, these solutions can include learning how to pad the bunion in your shoe or taping it in a specific manner before plan to be standing or walking for a long duration.
Athlete's foot can be chronic or come and go at infrequent intervals. In either case, a visit with a local podiatrist (such as one from Laurel Podiatry Associates, LLC) can be beneficial to helping you manage this fungal infection. Upon determining the severity of your case, your podiatrist will provide you with the right type of ointment to reduce the infection and also suggest footwear changes that you can make to keep the problem at bay. For example, you'll typically be told to change your socks a couple times per day and wear sandals, when possible, to keep your feet dry.