When Should You Call a Podiatrist for Help?

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After a foot injury, or if you have had foot, toe or heel pain for a while but you haven’t done anything about it, you may be hesitant to seek the help of a podiatrist.

Well, we are here to help!  It’s much better to come in for an evaluation by our expert doctors than it is to make a foot or ankle problem even worse by ignoring it.

Here are a few examples of foot or ankle problems and when you should seek professional help:

  • Ankle sprain. An ankle sprain is painful and the ankle will appear swollen. You can try the R.I.C.E. method of resting, applying ice regularly, using a compression bandage and elevating the leg. When to see a podiatrist: If after 2 days of self-care your ankle is still painful and swollen and you are having difficulty walking, please give us a call. You may have more than a sprain and may need immobilization, crutches, physical therapy and, in rare cases, surgery.

  • Calluses and corns. These grow from pressure or friction on the bottom of the foot or on the tops and sides of the toes. Moisturizing your feet daily and wearing comfortable, well-fitting shoes with lots of toe room can help, as can gently rubbing the growth away with a pumice stone. When to see a podiatrist: If these skin problems become painful, we can reduce the pressure by shaving them down.

  • Heel pain. The most common source of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, or inflammation of the fibrous tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot. Overpronation is a common cause as is overuse by standing on your feet for long periods or by wearing improper shoes. R.I.C.E. treatment can help relieve the pain. When to see a podiatrist: If the pain persists more than a couple of days, you need a doctor’s care. We will examine you to confirm the reason for your heel pain and have many treatment options, including non-invasive Low Level Light Laser Therapy.

  • Ingrown toenail. This painful condition can be relieved by easing out the corner of the toenail from the tissue with a small piece of cotton, to let it grow out properly. When to see a podiatrist: If you see any sign of infection, or if the nail continues to grow into the skin and causes pain, please come see us. We can lift the nail or remove part of the nail permanently so the problem won’t reoccur.

Important note for patients with diabetes: Please contact us right away if you have any foot, toe or heel pain or if you notice any change to the skin of your feet. Do not try any home remedies.

It’s Our Job To Help You! Please Call Us

Foot or toe pain is not normal! If you have heel pain or plantar fasciitis, discomfort from arthritis, an injury or just from overuse, please call Michele Kurlanski, DPM at Lighthouse Foot and Ankle Center. Dr. Kurlanski offers expert and professional podiatry services in Cumberland County, Maine. Please call us today at 207-774-0028 to schedule your appointment in our Scarborough office.