Find Answers From Our Roanoke Podiatrists About Your Foot and Ankle Pain...and About Our Practice!
We love to hear (and answer) your questions! Listed are some frequently asked questions we receive at office, as well as some answers to others that we think you may find very informative. Make sure to check out our blog as well, where you’ll find in-depth articles on common feet and ankle problems.
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How can flat feet be treated?
Treatment for flat feet includes a handful of conservative, nonsurgical options that work well. Before you seek medical assistance, you could try wearing shoes that are designed for individuals who have low arches. There are an array of athletic shoes that are tailored for people who have this particular condition, but you can also purchase over-the-counter inserts to help provide arch support.
Another form of flat feet treatment that is particularly effective is the use of orthotics. Orthotics are similar to inserts, but with the key distinction that these medical devices are prescribed and completely customized for your unique feet. The inserts you buy in stores are mass-produced and do not offer the same level of treatment for you.
When you suffer from issues that can arise from having flat feet, you need the experts at Shenandoah Podiatry. Dr. Jennifer Keller provides exceptional foot care for those who live in the Roanoke area. Call (540) 904-1458 for our Roanoke office or schedule an appointment online to receive the relief you need from foot and ankle pain today.
Is there a certain time of day to buy shoes?
Our feet tend to change size during the day, so the time you go shoe shopping actually can make a difference when it comes to finding a proper, comfortable fit. The best time to try on shoes is toward the end of the day, during the late afternoon or early evening. Our feet typically swell throughout the day, and the later hours is when our feet are usually at their largest. That’s the best time to fit; otherwise, a shoe purchased in the morning might not feel so perfect later on. Also remember to measure both feet and to concentrate on fitting the one that is larger, if one is.
If you have more questions about how footwear applies to your foot health, Dr. Jennifer Keller and the staff of Shenandoah Podiatry can provide the answers you need. You can schedule an appointment with us by calling (540) 904-1458 for our Roanoke office.
What is metatarsalgia?
Metatarsalgia is a common injury in which the long bones that run along the ball of your foot—the metatarsals—become inflamed. This often causes a burning, aching, or sharp pain just beneath the toes. It might also feel like there is a stone in your shoe when you walk.
Inflammation of the metatarsals often occurs as a result of overuse, especially with runners who regularly pound the ground with the fronts of their feet. Additional factors, including a tight Achilles tendon, flat feet, or improperly supportive footwear, can place excess pressure on the metatarsals and contribute to the problem.
If you suffer pain in the ball of the foot that doesn’t improve after several days of rest, contact Dr. Jennifer Keller and the staff of Shenandoah Podiatry. We can properly determine the source of your discomfort and recommend treatments and lifestyle changes that can find your relief. Schedule an appointment with our Blacksburg office by calling (540) 808-4343 or our Roanoke office by calling (540) 904-1458.
Can bunions be taken care of at home?
Bunion treatment at home can be effective in relieving pain and preventing the deformity from becoming worse. There are various methods to try and reduce toe pain, some of which may work better for you than others. You might try applying ice to the joint for 10-20 minutes, being careful not to expose your skin to too much cold. Warm soaks, stretches, and non-prescription medication may also prove comforting.
Perhaps the most helpful treatment is to wear proper shoes. Make sure they are roomy, have wide and deep toe boxes, and support your arch well. Keep heels low or flat, and avoid anything that places pressure on the big toe joint. Bunion pads and soft patches around pressure areas can also help.
While you can find some relief at home, Dr. Jennifer Keller and the staff at Shenandoah Podiatry can perform a full evaluation of your condition and offer special treatments, including custom orthotics, which can take pressure away from your bunion and have your foot feeling even better. Schedule an appointment by calling our Roanoke, VA office at (540) 904-1458 or our Blacksburg office at (540) 808-4343.
What is Charcot foot?
Charcot foot is a bone deformity in the foot that is the result of severe neuropathy. Someone who is unable to feel pain or other sensations in his or her feet from nerve damage may unknowingly walk in an abnormal manner or bear weight on an injury such as a sprain. Over time, this may weaken the bones to the point where they fracture and shift, eventually altering the shape of the foot.
In addition to the deformity, symptoms of this condition may include redness, warmth to the touch, swelling, and pain. Detecting this problem early is vital, as damage can become much worse the longer the foot is used without treatment.
If you have diabetes or neuropathy, report any signs of foot damage or abnormality to Dr. Jennifer Keller and the staff of Shenandoah Podiatry as soon as possible. We can fully evaluate your foot and determine the best route of action to provide healing and prevent serious conditions from developing. Schedule an appointment by calling our Roanoke office at (540) 904-1458 or our Blacksburg office at (540) 808-4343
Is this procedure going to hurt?
Every procedure is a little different, and the same is true of everyone’s pain tolerance, so this really depends on each individual case. We take every precaution to make all of our procedures as painless as possible. When administering shots, for example, we use a cold spray to reduce any sensitivity towards feeling the needle. No matter what type of podiatric care we are providing for you, we will go slowly and carefully explain what we are doing. Our goal is to make you feel as comfortable as possible, and we have found that this helps our patients.
At Shenandoah Podiatry we do our best to provide top-notch foot and ankle care with the least amount of pain or discomfort for you. If you have a medical condition that requires our services, come to either our Roanoke or Blacksburg, VA, offices and see Dr. Jennifer Keller or Dr. Marshal Gwynn. Call (540) 904-1458 for an appointment at our Roanoke office, or (540) 808-4343 for our Blacksburg office, and get the care you need today!
I am diabetic and found a blister. Should I be worried?
Blisters raise the potential for a break in the skin that could lead to infection, so you should absolutely be concerned. It is possible that diabetic blisters may appear on your legs or arms, and then go away on their own in 2-4 weeks, but these are quite rare. However, it is better to seek help and have it not be a big deal, than to let it go and face potential amputation.
Additionally, blisters may be an indication that you already have a severe infection. Keep in mind that your immune system cannot fight off infection particularly well, and this could lead to a dangerous condition for you. If the blister is intact, take every precaution to keep pressure off of it and come in to see us as soon as you possibly can.
If you have diabetes and discover a friction blister on your foot, contact Shenandoah Podiatry as soon as you can and make the earliest appointment possible. Dr. Jennifer Keller or Dr. Marshal Gwynn will give you the care you need at either our Roanoke or Blacksburg, VA, locations. Call (540) 904-1458 for our Roanoke office or (540) 808-4343 for Blacksburg today!
How do I know if I have toenail fungus?
Toenail fungus is a common nail condition with some distinct symptoms. A fungal infection damages keratin and changes it. Typically nails grow dull and discolored, often appearing yellow, gray, or brown. There may be a build-up of debris under the nail tissue. The keratin typically becomes brittle and crumbly or ragged. It may change shape and grow distorted as well. You may notice a slightly foul odor. Over time, you may find it more painful to wear certain shoes.
The most accurate way to tell if you have developed a fungus is to have your nails tested. Shenandoah Podiatry can scrape a little keratin off the top of your nail and have it analyzed in a lab to confirm any fungal infections. Once we’re sure of your condition, we help you begin treating it. Don’t just guess about your lower limb issues. Contact Shenandoah Podiatry in Roanoke and Blacksburg, Virginia for accurate care. Use the website or call to make an appointment with us: (540) 904-1458 for Roanoke, or (540) 808-4343 for Blacksburg.
How Often Should I Replace my Shoes?
When you replace your running shoes will depend on your unique foot needs and the type of shoes you wear. Most shoes last between 300 and 500 miles, though minimalist footwear may need to be retired sooner. The best tips for running shoes, though, advise you to consider your unique feet and footwear. These deciding factors include how your feet feel when you run and the visible signs of wear and tear on the shoes. Check to see how worn the tread on the outsole has become. If this is growing very thin, it may be time to replace your shoes.
How they feel when you run is also important. The shoe’s midsole, which isn’t visible, breaks down over time and loses its supportive properties. As this happens, you’ll notice a flat feeling to the shoe. Your feet may wear out and feel achier than normal. This is a sign that you definitely should replace your footwear. If you develop an injury, you’ve already waited too long. If you’re concerned about replacing your running shoes, let Shenandoah Podiatry in Virginia help. Contact us for more information through the website or by calling (540) 904-1458 for the Roanoke office, or (540) 808-4343 for the Blacksburg location.
How Can I Soothe Heel Pain After A Long Day at Work?
Being on your feet for long periods of time can make for a pretty painful end of the day—especially for your heels. One of the most common causes of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the ligament that spans the bottom of your foot. fPain is often worse in the morning since the ligament tightens in your sleep, making your first step difficult. As you walk around, the tissues will loosen up and pain will subside, but only temporarily. Left untreated, the problem will get increasingly worse, especially if you continue to stress it with overuse.
There are stretches you can do to soothe heel pain and help relieve symptoms, but the best thing you can do is rest. If you must be on your feet, take breaks often and try to avoid hard surfaces. Icing the area and taking anti-inflammatory medication can help as well. Also, wear shoes that provide plenty of arch support and slip in some custom orthotics to add even more.
If you are experiencing heel pain, Dr. Jennifer Keller and Dr. Marshal Gwynn can help. Call Shenandoah Podiatry at (540) 808-4343 in Blacksburg, VA, or (540) 904-1458 in Roanoke.