Primary doctors do well to remind you about self-examination of your breasts or testes. Self-exams can detect diseases such as cancer before your next doctor’s appointment and before they become major health issues. Our podiatrists, Dr. Heidi M. Christie and Dr. Chanda L. Day-Houts of Montgomery Foot Care Specialists, want you to know that performing a periodic self-exam of your feet is also a doctor-recommended procedure. Careful examination of your feet may reveal a problem that otherwise might be overlooked.
What a self-exam of the foot can reveal
- Skin problems
Any sort of lesion – which is an interruption in the surface of the skin – needs to be carefully considered. These include corns and calluses – signs that you may be wearing the wrong size or type of shoe; discoloration – any bluish or purplish tinge to the skin on your toes is a sign of poor circulation; and cracks in between the toes that may signal a fungal infection. If you’ve got bumps, lumps, or moles on your feet, watch them for signs of change each time you perform a self-exam.
- Sensitivity problems
Are there parts of your foot that you can’t feel? If you touch them with your fingers, do you feel the sensation of touching? Lack of feeling in your feet is a sign of nerve damage, possibly due to diabetes.
- Difference in shape
Does your foot look misshapen in any way? Do you notice a change in the way it looks now from the way it used to look? Pay attention to your toes: if your big toe is tilting inward toward your other toes, you may be developing a bunion. If some of your smaller toes seem to be pointing downward, you should be evaluated for hammertoes.
- Unnecessary pain
Many people live under the illusion that foot pain is normal, especially as you grow older. But pain isn’t inevitable. Whether you have pain that comes on suddenly or has developed over time, there is a lot we can do to minimize or even eliminate it.
If your foot self-exam reveals anything unusual or concerning, don’t hesitate to contact us online or by phone at (334) 396-3668. Our experienced podiatrists have specific treatments for heel pain, big toe arthritis, toenail fungus, athlete’s foot, and curled toes. We see it all, and we treat it all, right here in our office in Montgomery, Alabama.