Foot injuries happen to all of us at some point, causing foot pain and possibly debilitating problems – usually temporarily. Fortunately, many of these injuries are preventable.
Let’s talk about some of the main types of preventable foot injuries that are often treated by podiatrists, how you can prevent them from occurring, and where you can go in Southern Texas if you have a hurt foot that warrants a medical evaluation and treatment by a foot doctor.
Common Types of Foot Injuries
A few of the most common foot injuries include the following:
- Sprains (injury to a ligament, which connects bone to bone)
- Strains (injury to a muscle or a tendon, which connects bone to muscle)
- Puncture wounds (such as from stepping on a nail)
- Lacerations (cuts)
- Tendonitis (inflammation of a tendon)
- Joint dislocation
- Nerve impingement
- Stress fractures (hairline cracks in a bone)
- Bursitis (inflammation of a fluid-filled sac around a joint)
- Plantar fasciitis (inflammation of the band of connective tissue between the toes and the heel)
When symptoms such as foot pain, swelling, stiffness, and redness persist and do not respond to the RICE method (rest, ice, compression, and elevation), it is in your best interest to see a podiatrist so that the issue doesn’t become worse or turn into a permanent injury. For example, if you have a sprained ankle that is getting worse after a week, see a physician who is dedicated to foot injuries.
The foot doctor will examine your foot and ankle, probably take an X-ray of the area, determine a diagnosis of the injury, and recommend treatment that will return your foot to full function and health.
How to Prevent a Foot Injury
You may be able to avoid many of the most common foot injuries by implementing the following methods:
Wear Good Shoes
Wear footwear that is in good condition, fits properly, provides cushiony support, has plenty of room in the toe boxes (so your toes aren’t squished), and features a sensible heel height (no higher than 2-½ inches). Children need to wear properly sized shoes, and to get new shoes as they grow – shoes should never be too tight.
For people in active professions such as construction, this means protective footwear with steel toes and thick soles. Athletes must wear shoes that are appropriate to their sport because different sports involve different movements and pressures on the feet.
Women who must wear heels can avoid developing bunions and plantar fasciitis (which causes heel pain) by wearing dress shoes that have wide heels, plenty of room for the toes, and a cushiony footbed.
Wear Sandals Rather than Going Barefoot
Walking barefoot, especially outdoors, subjects your feet to possible cuts, scrapes, and infections. It is better to wear comfortable sandals or flip-flops to protect your feet.
Wear shower sandals or flip-flops when walking in gym locker rooms, public bathroom areas, and beaches to avoid athlete’s foot and slip-and-fall accidents.
Keep Your Body Healthy
Exercise of any kind strengthens your muscles and improves your endurance. Moving around and being active is good for your circulation, your heart, and your lungs, so having a strong body will help you avoid injuries of all kinds.
Wearing customized orthotic shoes or orthotic shoe inserts which are designed by your podiatrist will help to correct gait problems, support your arches, and protect your feet. Your foot doctor will explain the best solution for you.
Outstanding Podiatry Services in Greater San Antonio
For strong and healthy feet for a lifetime, partner with one of our expert foot doctors at The Podiatry Group of South Texas. Our experienced podiatrists understand the reasons behind foot injuries, and we help people of all ages with tailor-made footwear and comprehensive plans to help keep your feet strong.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, call our location near you or fill out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to being your partner in health!