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Posts for tag: cosmetic treatments

Today we continue our look at the amazing uses of lasers. Everyone wants to look and feel their best, but having unsightly spider veins can bring your mood down. Spider veins affect both women and men, but are more common in women. They generally occur on the face and legs. Your podiatrists at the Foot and Ankle Wellness Center offer non-invasive treatment for spider veins with our Aerolase LightPro Neo Laser.

Spider veins are small red or purple blood vessels that twist and turn beneath the skin. They can be painful and are highly visible. Many people who spend long days on their feet will develop spider veins although they can also occur due to heredity, pregnancy, and blood clots. The simple laser treatment is easy, quick, and can greatly reduce the appearance of these spider veins. The heat from the laser damages the veins, causing scar tissue to form. The scar tissue then fills the veins and makes it disappear.

Your podiatrist is here to help find the right treatment for your spider veins. Even if your spider veins don’t cause you pain, they can worsen and spread over time, so treating them early is important. For more information about our laser and possible treatment options, visit our website, check us out on Facebook, and call the office to schedule your appointment today.

Every summer the heels of my feet seem to dry out and crack. Sometimes these cracks can be very deep and painful. How do these crack occur? Why are they more common in some people than others? Why do cracked heels affect some people in the summer and some in the winter? Let’s take a look:

How do we get cracked heels?

Cracks on the feet are caused by insufficient moisture. Our feet have no oil glands so they rely heavily on our sweat glands instead. When they dry out, our heels shrink and when they try to expand… “It’s kind of like if you put plaster on a balloon and let it harden and blow up the balloon, the balloon will expand the plaster and crack. The heel pad wants to expand outward, but the skin is not pliable enough to expand with it, so it cracks.” (http://goo.gl/0MZkuj)

READ MORE: Year-Round Footcare

Some people are more susceptible to cracks than others. Contributing factors can include diabetes, obesity, dehydration, and people who just plain don’t take care of their feet. Diabetics commonly suffer from diabetic neuropathy, loss of feeling in the feet, which means a small crack can go unnoticed and turn into a larger crack, which leads to more serious issues, and that’s never good.

For people who are overweight, the simple act of standing for long periods of time can lead to cracks. The increased pressure on the heel causes the heel pad to expand outward and if the skin is not supple enough, it will crack.

What are the dangers of cracked heels?

Cracks in the heel can be as minor as an aesthetic annoyance or as serious as a deep fissure that cracks open and bleeds. More minor conditions include redness, flaky, itchy, or peeling skin, and rash (usually from itching).

If minor cracks are ignored they can deepen to the point where they open and start bleeding. These more serious cracks can be an entry point for bacteria and viruses, which can lead to infection.

So what do I do about this?

            There are a lot of ways you can prevent and treat dry feet. First of all, stay hydrated. Well-hydrated skin will not shrink and expand so the chances of cracking are lessened. Next, make sure you are moisturizing your feet daily. Use a non-fragranced, light lotion after you shower. Moisturize daily if you wear a lot of open heeled shoes (which can contribute to dry skin). Wearing socks to bed over moisturized heels is also a good idea.

            There are a lot of other home remedies out there, but make sure you talk to your podiatrist before trying them out. Even things like pumice stones must be used with caution. Most importantly, don’t ignore your feet! A little crack or a little peeling skin can lead to bigger problems so catch it early. If you do have pain in your heel that won’t go away, see your podiatrist immediately.

 

READ MORE: Take Care of Your Feet

Do your skin or nails embarrass you? With sandal weather just around the corner, it may be time to show your feet some love. The Foot and Ankle Wellness Center is hosting an exclusive, invitation-only Skin & Nail Rejuvenation Night on Thursday, April 23rd from 5:30pm to 7pm. Join us for a few hours of wine, appetizers, and information to transform your skin and nails. You could even win a $500 gift card!

Look good in those sandals!All you have to do is call 740-363-4373, ext. 7 or email [email protected] and make a reservation. All requests must be received before April 16th. Space will be limited to the first 100 people to RSVP.

 

What can our laser do for you? Laser therapy cures fungal nails, rejuvenates hands, eliminates spider veins, and removes hair, warts, age spots, and scars. How does it do that? Let’s look at the basics of laser technology.

Laser stands for: Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. Laser procedures use non-ionizing radiation, so they do not have the same long-term risks as other types of radiation such as x-rays. A medical laser uses precisely focused light sources to selectively interact, in useful ways, upon various tissues within the skin and body. When you turn on a lamp, that light bulb spreads wavelengths across the room in every direction. When you turn on a laser, those wavelengths become highly concentrated and centered over a single area.

Light and your body tissues interact all the time. Have you ever had a sunburn? That was UV light interacting with your skin to create a change. This happens all the way down at the molecular level. Molecules can experience:

  • Photochemical reactions; getting the molecule so excited that it will share electrons with other molecules and thus change into something different
  • Photothermal reactions; light turning into heat energy which can be used to separate or bind tissues
  • Photoablation; getting the molecule so excited that the body rejects it from the tissue completely (This is what we mentioned briefly in the Gangrene article)
  • Plasma-induced photoablation; molecules transfer energy from one to another creating a series of collisions that result in the release of many electrons
  • Photodisruption; just like plasma-induced photoablation, but with a few shockwaves thrown in

Essentially, the way we set the laser can create different chemical reactions in the body at the molecular level to change our tissues in different ways. Your podiatrist will set the frequency (wavelength) of the laser, the power delivered to the unit, and the duration and repetition of the illumination. Each of these factors affects the tissue in different ways and will be customized to you personally for your specific needs.

How safe is the treatment? Laser technology has been around since the 1900s when Oscar Raab developed its use in “Photodynamic Therapy”, which is still used today to kill bacteria and viruses, and treat everything from acne to cancerous tumors. There are some safety precautions that your podiatrist will explain during treatment, such as wearing protective eyewear.

Trust in the Foot and Ankle Wellness Center to give your nails and skin new life. Don’t forget to RSVP to our event before April 16th and remember, we are limited to the first 100 people who request an invitation. Can’t make the event? No problem. Just ask any of our staff about your medical laser treatment options and we can schedule you for a normal office visit. We hope to see you all soon!

While it may not feel like it, summer is just around the corner and that means it’s sandals weather. We want our feet to look their best so we need to make sure they are healthy. One unsightly (and painful) condition we should take care of is our ingrown toenails. An ingrown toenail occurs when the edges of your toenail grow down into your skin rather than straight out. This usually affects the big toe, although it can happen to any toe, and is quite painful.

How do I know if I have an ingrown toenail?

Ingrown toenails are not fun. If you experience pain, redness, swelling, or unusual warmth in your toe, it could be an ingrown toenail. Some people may only experience slight discomfort and tenderness at the edges of the toenails. Even if your condition doesn’t seem that bad, the digging nail can cause ruptures in the skin through which bacteria can enter and lead to infection. Signs of an infection include spreading redness, changes in skin temperature, swelling, and pus around or leaking from the ingrown area. Some ingrown toenails can be treated at home, but it is still important that you see a podiatrist, especially if you see signs of infection or if you have other conditions such as diabetes.

Why did I get an ingrown toenail?

There are many causes of ingrown nails.

  • Improper trimming of the toenails. Nails should be cut straight across using a proper pair of nail clippers. Do not round the edges of the nails or if you do, do so only slightly with a nail file.
  • Wearing tight fitting or pointed toe shoes will press the toes together and put pressure on the nails. This can bend the nails, causing them to grow down into the skin.
  • Acute injuries or repetitive trauma to the toes can cause ingrown toenails. This is common among athletes such as soccer players.
  • Ingrown toenails also run in the family. Some families have more naturally rounded toenails and/or more upturned bones. These characteristics can lead to ingrown toenails.

What are my homecare options?

There are plenty of online tutorials that tell you how to deal with ingrown toenails. The fact is, while some of these remedies may help alleviate symptoms for a time, they will not solve an ingrown toenail and can actually make things worse. Take an over the counter pain reliever if needed to reduce swelling and discomfort. Another easy thing to do is to soak your feet in warm water. This can soften the skin around the nail, making it possible for you to gently massage the edge of the nail away from the skin. Do this several times a day, wrap the toe in fresh gauze, and make sure to wear shoes that give your toes plenty of room.

Do not try to cut your toenail! Repeated cutting of the nail will make things worse. Remember, when you see your podiatrist cutting your ingrown toenail, they are using specialized sterile tools and have years of training and experience. Doing it yourself in your bathroom at home is not the same thing. If you are a diabetic or have a circulatory disorder, do not attempt any home remedy. Make an appointment with your podiatrist right away.

What will my podiatrist do?

First, your podiatrist will evaluate your ingrown toenail and ask about the causes and symptoms. If the ingrown toenail is not infected and not severely ingrown, your doctor may be able to simply cut a small portion of the nail away and prescribe a topical treatment to avoid infection. A process called Partial Nail Plate Avulsion may also be recommended for those with chronic ingrown toenails. During this procedure, the doctor will inject the toe with an anesthetic and fully remove the side of the nail that is ingrown.

I just can’t stress it enough; your feet are a very important part of your overall health. Caring for them properly is essential. This means paying attention to them and treating any conditions that may arise. Even if an ingrown toenail seems like a little matter, it can lead to more serious health problems and put a damper on our summer sandal wearing. If you think you have an ingrown toenail, call to make an appointment today and we can get your feet looking pretty in no time!

    With Valentine’s Day just a few days away, there are plenty of people still running around looking for that perfect gift for their loved one. If you really want to pamper your sweetheart, get them a pedicure!

    Pedicures are actually really good for your feet and they are NOT just for women, but you should always be cautious when heading to the salon down the road.  A bad pedicure can lead to cuts, infections, and a trip to your podiatrist. The Foot and Ankle Wellness Center, on the other hand, offers you the PediCare Salon. While a pedicure is a purely cosmetic procedure, a PediCare includes medical benefits, which will lead to less time at the doctor’s and more time admiring your soft and healthy feet.

    There are plenty of cosmetology schools that offer classes in manicures and pedicures, but let’s face it, anyone can set up a foot tub and a chair and offer to rub your feet. At the PediCare Salon, we employ only Certified Medical Nail Technicians (CMNT). A CMNT is state-licensed and must complete an accredited program in nail care, including rigorous training, examinations, and the completion of a medical internship under a licensed podiatrist. In other words, they know more about your feet than any average salon pedicurist. This allows our technicians to customize your PediCare with services tailored to your medical needs, adding benefits that the salon down the street just can’t compete with. A regular pedicurist might miss a budding corn or ingrown toenail as they clip and scrub away. A PediCare technician knows exactly what to look for and might already have an idea of your medical history from your recent office visits.

    One of the concerns when getting a pedicure is the sanitary condition of the tubs and the tools. Salons are required to run a sanitation cycle of at least ten minutes between clients for each footbath. On a busy afternoon, this requirement might fall by the wayside, leaving you at risk for any fungi or bacteria left by the previous customer. At the PediCare Salon, you receive a clean medical setting under the direction of your podiatrist. Complete sterilization of our instruments along with strict adherence to aseptic techniques eliminates the risk of a transfer of infection.

    Every step of a pedicure is designed to pamper your feet both cosmetically and medically. The initial foot soak helps soften feet. Next, a skillfully used pumice stone removes layers of dead and calloused skin and helps prevent the build up of dead cells, which can be a cause of bunions and corns. The foot and leg massage along with an emollient-rich moisturizer increases blood-flow and restores the moisture balance to your skin. Moisturized feet are far less likely to get blisters and crakes, and of course they look better too. Nail trimming is important to maintain healthy nails and the polish coating just makes the whole thing fun to look at when it’s finished.

    There are, unfortunately, a lot of ways to turn these benefits to detriments. If you are prone to ingrown toenails and your pedicurist cuts them incorrectly, that could mean another trip to the doctor. If the pedicurist tries to use a razor instead of a pumice stone, run as fast as you can in the other direction.  Cuts are easy to get with these razors and this drastically increases your risk of infection. You should also avoid the trend of the “doctor fish” (those tubs of little fishes that supposedly eat the dead skin right off of you). These fish are known to harbor dangerous bacteria and the practice of fish pedicures is outlawed in 14 states. The PediCare salon uses only safe, sanitary, and proper tools to be used for your pedicure.

    In addition to the many medical benefits listed above, the PediCare Salon offers a polish application for those who bring their own or purchase a bottle directly from the Foot and Ankle Wellness Center. You can also opt for a clear anti-fungal nail polish to be applied.

    All in all, a pedicure is a great thing to keep your feet looking their best, but a PediCare takes you to the next level of health. So the next time you think about heading to the salon, make it the PediCare Salon at the Foot and Ankle Wellness Center. Our service options include a half-hour PediCare, a one-hour PediCare, or a half-hour foot and ankle massage. Call us today to book your appointment.

 

For more information, please visit the PediCare Salon page found HERE.