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By Dr. Jade Gittens
May 24, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Toenail Fungus   foot fungus  

Developing a fungal infection on the toenails is a common problem. However, many people do not immediately realize they have an foot fungusinfection. Unfortunately, leaving toenail fungus untreated can lead to other health problems. Therefore, it is important to seek treatment as soon as you suspect a possible infection. In Somerset, NJ, toenail fungus treatment options are available from experienced podiatrist Dr. Jade Gittens.

Symptoms & Causes of Toenail Fungus

One of the signs of a toenail fungal infection is a change in the color of the toenails. Nails can appear yellowish in color or have white spots when infected. The toenails can also become brittle, thicker, loose or oddly shaped. Toenail fungus can develop for a variety of reasons, including injury to the nail plate. Individuals with diabetes, circulatory problems, a history of athlete’s foot, or a weakened immune system are more likely to develop a fungal infection in the toenails.

Treatments Options

Several possible treatment options are available for treating toenail fungus. The type of treatment applied will depend on the specific type of fungus on the nails. Treatments can include topical creams and nail lacquers, anti-fungal pills and removal of infected nails. A podiatrist can examine your toenails and determine which type of treatment is needed, which might be a combination of treatments. See a podiatrist in Somerset for the treatment of your toenail fungus as soon as possible to prevent the infection from spreading.

Preventing Toenail Fungus

There are several things you can do to prevent toenail fungus from developing. Preventive measures include:

  • Keeping the feet clean and dry.
  • Maintaining good hygiene.
  • Regularly checking the feet and toes for signs of fungal infection.
  • Wearing flip-flops when using public showers, such as at the gym.
  • Wearing flip flops when walking around public pool areas.
  • Using a talcum foot powder to keep the feet dry.
  • Wearing properly fitting footwear with room for the toes to move.
  • Wearing socks made from moisture wicking materials.
  • Regularly disinfecting home pedicure tools, including nail clippers.

Untreated toenail fungus can lead to the development of other problems so it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible. For treatment of toenail fungus in Somerset, NJ, contact the office of Dr. Gittens by calling (732) 412-1282.

By Dr. Jade Gittens
April 26, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Shin Splints  

Although a shin splint is commonly used to describe various pains between the ankle and the knee, it actually refers to a specific inflammatory condition of the tibia -- a condition called medial tibial stress syndrome.

A type of "overuse injury" to the legs, the most common causes of shin splints include excessive running, poor conditioning and over-pronation (flattening of the arch). The result is pain in the front or inside of the lower leg that usually gets worse with a sudden increase in distance or intensity of training. Shin splints are a common problem for many runners and athletes. Muscle weakness, non-supportive shoes and overtraining are also contributing factors.

To prevent shin splints, warm up and stretch muscles before starting any workout activity and choose supportive footwear. Begin workouts gradually and avoid over-training. All of these methods will go a long way in helping to prevent many lower leg problems. Conservative treatment for most shin splint pain includes rest, ice, compression and elevation. Strengthening exercises, anti-inflammatory agents and custom foot orthotics may also be recommended to reduce symptoms.

Shin pain isn't always indicative of a shin splint. Lower leg pain may actually signal a more serious problem, including a stress fracture, partial muscle tear and tendonitis, all of which require special treatment. Always seek the professional care of a podiatrist if:

  • You have severe pain in your shin following an injury.
  • Your shin is hot and inflamed.
  • Swelling in your shin increases.
  • Shin pain persists during rest.

Proper diagnosis of the cause of pain is necessary in order to administer the most appropriate treatment. If you suffer from shin pain, visit your podiatrist for an evaluation and proper treatment.

By Dr. Jade Gittens
March 30, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Healthy Feet  

Looking fabulous in your favorite pair of heels does have a price. In fact, shoes that fit poorly or have high heels frequently cause foot problems, including calluses, corns, bunions, and blisters, just to name a few.

All footwear eventually show signs of wear and tear. Inspect the condition of your own shoes. Do they appear stretched out or worn? Then you probably need a new pair. Creasing of the midsole is also a good indication that your shoes have lost their cushion and support.

Maximize Fit, Minimize Discomfort

The following tips can help you avoid purchasing a pair of shoes that may contribute to a long list of foot problems:

  • Try on shoes late in the day, when the feet tend to be a bit larger due to natural swelling
  • Women should opt for low, stable heels
  • Try on both shoes to be sure that they fit comfortably on both feet
  • Choose breathable shoe materials, such as leather, to prevent excessive sweating and blisters
  • Have your feet measured to ensure the best fit
  • Avoid pointy-toed shoes which cause bunions and hammertoes
  • Walk around the store with both shoes on to make sure the fit is comfortable
  • For athletes, choose shoes that are specific to the sport you play
  • Choose the right shoe for your foot type (e.g. if you have flat feet, select shoes with good arch support)

Still not ready to part with your favorite pair of sneakers or trendy heels? Not sure if the shoes you currently wear are right for your feet? A professional podiatrist can evaluate the condition of your feet, and work with you to find the best pair of shoes for you!

By Dr. Jade Gittens
March 01, 2017
Category: Podiatry
Tags: Foot pain   Pregnancy  

During pregnancy, it's not uncommon for women to experience an array of aches and pains all over the body. Among these complaints are tired, swollen, achy feet - a common and painful symptom experienced by mothers-to-be during their nine months of pregnancy.

One of the most common foot problems to occur during pregnancy is swelling, or edema, which results from an extra accumulation of blood. The natural weight gain and enlarging uterus puts pressure on the veins that lead to the legs, causing circulation to slow down and increasing fluid retention. The legs and feet may become swollen, making shoes tight, and in some cases causing pain and discomfort. Slight swelling during pregnancy is normal and usually subsides after giving birth. Women should pay close attention to edema symptoms. Swelling to the face or a sudden onset of swelling could be a sign of a more serious condition called preeclampsia and should be reported immediately.

Another troubling foot problem that can occur during pregnancy is over-pronation (flat feet) which is caused when a person's arch flattens out upon weight bearing causing the feet to turn in abnormally. This condition develops when the dense band of tissue in the arch of the foot called the plantar fascia becomes strained and inflamed due to increased flattening of the feet. Over-pronation is common in pregnancy due to the increased weight gain which stresses the feet and flattens the arches. Walking can become very painful, and women may experience increased discomfort and strain on the feet, calves and back.

There are various remedies available to help minimize and alleviate foot pain during pregnancy.

  • Take short breaks during the day and elevate your feet to relieve pressure and swelling.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Wear shoes that are soft, comfortable and give your feet room to move.
  • Wear seamless socks that do not constrict circulation.
  • Exercise or walk regularly to promote overall health.
  • Stretch legs frequently and avoid crossing your legs when sitting.
  • To prevent arch pain, stretch daily, avoid going barefoot and wear supportive low-heeled shoes.

When foot pain persists, visit your podiatrist. We'll work with you to find the best treatments for your foot pain. Pregnancy and pending motherhood should be a pleasant, enjoyable experience. Understanding the causes of foot pain and learning easy home remedies can help women step more comfortably throughout these special nine months.

By Dr. Jade Gittens
February 24, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: warts  

If you do not know what to do about warts on the feet, don’t worry. There are prescription treatments for getting rid of foot warts, but it is wartsimportant to see a podiatrist for the most effective treatment. In more serious cases when prescription medications or ointments are not an option, warts can be removed through laser cautery. At Premier Foot & Ankle Center, Dr. Jade Gittens is your Somerset, NJ, podiatrist and can recommend the best treatment method for you.

Causes of Foot Warts

Foot warts are caused by a virus. The virus usually enters the skin through tiny cuts or abrasions, then proceeds to produce an infection. Plantar warts are a specific type of wart that grows on the bottoms of the feet. Plantar warts tend to develop after walking around barefoot on an unclean surface, such as a locker room floor or the cement walk around a public pool. The warm, moist environment of a locker room or indoor pool is especially conducive to contracting plantar warts.

Treatments for Foot Warts

Foot warts have a tendency to be recurring, as well as resistant to various treatment methods. Patients with foot warts often first try treating warts with an over-the-counter product. However, these treatments are not usually effective and can also damage healthy tissue surrounding the area where the wart is located. To effectively treat foot warts, it is best to see your Somerset podiatrist. Possible treatments the podiatrist might recommend include:

  • Laser Cautery
  • Prescription Ointments
  • Prescription Medication

Before you even begin treatment there are some things you can do to prevent warts from spreading to other areas of the feet or body. Avoid directly touching warts, as that can encourage them to spread. Also, avoid walking around barefoot, particularly on dirty or damp surfaces. Keep the feet clean and dry and be sure to wear fresh socks everyday. Try to wear a different pair of shoes daily, as well, or allow shoes to air out a bit in between wearings.

If you have foot warts and do not know what to do about them, it is best to see a podiatrist in Somerset, NJ. An expert podiatrist, such as Dr. Gittens, can evaluate your feet and determine which treatment method will work best for you. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Gittens, contact Premier Foot & Ankle Center at (732) 412-1282.

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