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Podiatry

Relief for Foot Pains

Medical professionals recommend that people take at least 10,000 steps every day, which can be a difficult goal if your feet are in pain. Walking is an easy way to give your body much-needed cardiovascular exercise. It strengthens your heart, lungs and skeletal system and keeps your body healthy. Foot problems, in addition to the pain they cause, can seriously impede a person’s ability to stay healthy.

Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System is here to help. At our podiatry center, skilled orthopedists with comprehensive knowledge of foot care utilize a wide variety of exercises and surgeries to treat foot and ankle problems.

Podiatry Treatments

It’s sometimes easy to forget the wear and tear your feet go through on a daily basis. Foot pain can develop instantly from an accident, or develop gradually from conditions you did not even realize were affecting you. In either case, a podiatrist is trained in numerous treatments to help remedy the problem.

Podiatry services include treatment for the following conditions:

  • Hammertoe – Hammertoe is an abnormal growth in the lesser toes in which they curve sharply from the joint. This can be painful and possibly result in problems with the other toes. In mild cases it can be treated with medical corrective padding. More severe cases will require surgery.
  • Heel pain – The most common cause of heel pain is an abnormal gait that places too much pressure on the heel as you walk. Other causes include heel spurs (abnormal growths), disease and injury. Podiatrists treat foot pain with anti-inflammatory medications, heel braces and orthotic devices. In rare cases surgery may be recommended.
  • Clubfoot – Clubfoot is a non-life-threatening birth defect in which the foot, ankle and heel all twist at an odd angle, making the foot appear broken. Clubfoot makes it difficult to walk, but it is otherwise not painful. Treating clubfoot is a lengthy process that involves the doctor stretching the foot into place, holding it in place with a cast for a few weeks, and then repeating until the condition is corrected.
  • Bunions – Bunions are an excessive growth of tissue and bone on the big toe that irritate the foot and can become more painful over time. Large bunions can crowd the other toes and may even result in hammertoe. They can sometimes be treated with medication, but failing that, a doctor may recommend a bunionectomy. This is a relatively simple operation where the doctor removes the bunion completely.
  • Ingrown toenails – An ingrown toenail is a common, painful condition in which the nail grows into the skin. The condition sometimes is caused by clipping toenails too short. Because of the way toes are curved, when the nail is too short it can grow at an odd angle that cuts into the skin. The pain is chronic, and an infection may develop. When treated early, ingrown toenails can be removed simply and managed with antifungal medication. If the nail is far along in its development, it might require permanent removal.