Look good, feel good feet

Multiple skin changes affecting the appearance of your feet can occur at any age.

Perhaps you are curious about the recent or long-standing colour changes of your toenails or other unusual skin changes including growths or bumps. Patients presenting with toenails that are discoloured, thickened, or have an abnormal appearance will sometimes complain of embarrassment when at the beach or when wearing open toed sandals or shoes. In addition to colour changes of the toenails, some toenails can become abnormally thick and in turn they can rub inside of your shoes, putting added pressure on your toes and causing discomfort.

While it is possible that these changes may be temporary, they often require treatment intervention of some kind. In addition to nail changes, patients visiting our office will complain of unusual bumps, lumps or skin discolouration’s between the toes, around the heel and ankle, or on the top of the foot. Lumps and bumps will likely carry different diagnoses depending on their location, size, duration and other factors.

The good news is that whatever aesthetic changes are happening with your feet, there is always a reason for them and it is important to get the right information and treatment options to help reverse these problems.

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Common foot problems

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NAILS

The altered appearance of your toenails can sometimes be an indication of underlying health problems. Nails that become discolored with a yellow or darkened appearance may be a sign that fungus is living beneath the nail. Diabetic patients are almost three times more likely to have toenail fungus than people without diabetes. If you suspect discolouration, thickening, or pain in your toenails, you should be evaluated by a podiatrist.

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WARTS

Warts are caused by a particular strain of the human papillomavirus and cause unsightly and sometimes painful lesions. Because they have many blood vessels, they will bleed easily if scraped or filed. They are often on the sole, or plantar aspect of the foot. Warts should be treated sooner rather than later and numerous treatment options are available.

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SKIN

Chronic redness, itching, and cracking of your skin is usually a sign of athletes foot caused by fungus. Changing the environment between your toes, addressing shoe wear and using topical agents are all required for a timely cure. Pain felt on the sole of the foot may be a sign of a painful callus that could be caused by the unique shape of your foot or your gait (how you walk). Careful removal of the callus and addressing the biomechanical cause of the callus can prevent it from recurring.

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