It’s a New Year and time for resolutions. Here at Texas Foot Specialists we would like our patients to commit to being more proactive about the health of their feet. One easy way to do this is by conducting regular self-exams on your feet and ankles. Follow these simple steps and in a few minutes, you’ll be able to give your feet a comprehensive once-over in order to detect any developing conditions.
1. Stand with your feet together and look down. Do your feet look to be the same shape and size? Do you notice any lumps, bumps or swelling? Are your toes all in alignment? Do any appear to be drifting out of place or turning under?
2. Sit in a chair and place one foot on the opposite leg. Look over the entire foot and ankle—top, bottom and sides. Notice the color of your skin. Do you see any redness, patches of dry, scaly skin, bruises, cuts that don’t appear to be healing or any changes in moles? Also, check your toenails. Make sure none of the edges is growing into the sides of the nail bed and becoming ingrown. Are your nails discolored? Crumbling edges may indicate a fungal nail infection. Examine the other foot in the same way.
3. While sitting, also test the ability for your feet to perceive sensations. The eraser end of a pencil works well for this. Trace the sides, tops and bottoms of your feet with the eraser. Do you feel the eraser equally on all parts of your feet? Are you experiencing any other unusual sensations in your feet such as burning, tingling or pins and needles?
4. Lastly, do you have pain or stiffness in any part of your feet, toes or ankles? If so, note whether the pain is constant or intermittent. Is it a sharp pain or a dull ache? Does the pain worsen with activity?
It’s important to report anything out of the ordinary that you find when examining your feet to our podiatrists, Dr. Gregory Mangum and Dr. Bruce Miller. The foot doctor will perform a professional exam on your feet and conduct the necessary tests to diagnose the source of your foot pain. Contact our Pasadena (281) 991-0600, Sugar Land (281) 242-4448 or Houston (713) 664-6677 office for an appointment.