ETL Podiatry

Experienced Podiatric Care in Queens and Melville, NY

Melville Office: (631) 549-8637

801 Walt Whitman Rd. Melville, NY 11747

Briarwood Office: (718) 657-8921

84-75 Main St. Briarwood, NY 11435

High Arches Can Cause Foot and Ankle Pain

Having high arches are often inherited, but it can also be caused by a bone disorder or neurological problem. The arches remain high and inflexible even when under pressure from your weight. A properly functioning arch is balanced and flexible and works in coordination with the tendons to support the foot. When an arch is rigid, it prevents pressure from being equally distributed across the front of the foot to the heel area. People with high arches are also more susceptible to developing toe deformities like bunions and hammertoes.

While some people who have rigid high arches don’t experience any problems, the majority of folks will experience balance problems and ankle instability. These issues can lead to more frequent ankle sprains and strains, so be sure to see your foot doctor to help prevent future problems.

3 possible treatments for high arches include the following:

  1. Properly-fitted and supportive shoes—Choosing footwear with a low heel cup will help provide better ankle support and increase stability.
  2. Custom orthotic insertsA wide variety of inserts and arch supports can be custom made to fit your precise foot shape and provide the proper support and cushioning.
  3. Surgery—In some rare situations, surgery may be necessary to lower the arch and restore some flexibility.

If you are experiencing problems with high arches, see your podiatrist for the proper care. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors that includes Geoffrey C. Epstein, DPM, Matthew J. Tavroff, DPM, Stuart B. Leon, DPM, and Robert J. Leon, DPM is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.

4 Simple Treatments for Hammertoes

The deformity is known as “hammertoe” causes the joints of one or more of your middle toes to bend at the end into the shape of a hammer. If all four small toes are bending, the condition is called claw foot. The big toe is the only one that isn’t susceptible to bending in this manner.

An imbalance between the muscles and tendons in the toes causes the deformity. Shoes that are too tight can push the toes together and contribute further to the bending. Hammertoes that are left untreated will continue to bend and become rigid. At that point, surgery may be needed to straighten them. Treating them earlier to help avoid surgery can be done with a variety of methods.

4 early treatments for hammertoes include the following:

  1. Physical therapy—Stretching and strengthening exercises including picking up marbles with your toes and doing calf raises are among the many physical therapy exercises you can try.
  2. Properly fitted shoes—Supportive yet comfortable shoes with a wide toe box and low heel cups will provide room for inserts and help prevent friction.
  3. Orthotic inserts and devices—along with properly fitted shoes can be used to isolate and cushion the toes and help to correct the balance problems between the tendons and muscles.
  4. Insulating cushions and pads—Moleskin pads and cushioning devices will help prevent rubbing while insulating corns and calluses.

If you need help treating hammertoes, the foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors that includes Geoffrey C. Epstein, DPM, Matthew J. Tavroff, DPM, Stuart B. Leon, DPM, and Robert J. Leon, DPM is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.

How To Treat and Prevent Fungal Toenails

foot fungus

While fungal toenail infections are quite common, many people who actually have this condition don’t seek treatment right away since the symptoms are not particularly painful or noticeable unless you are looking for them.

There will be only minor discoloration at first. However, a fungal toenail infection will slowly become worse as the affected nails become more and more discolored and brittle. The fungi can also emit an unpleasant smell which will often get people into their podiatrist’s office for proper treatment.

Treatment and prevention of fungal toenail infections include the following:

  • Change your shoes often—Allow your footwear to air out between uses. Drying out your shoes will help kill the fungi.
  • Antifungal spray and lotion—can be applied to your feet and footwear to kill the fungi.
  • Keep your feet clean and dry—Wash your feet daily and wear breathable socks and footwear.
  • Proper nail cutting—Always trim your toenails straight across to avoid causing ingrown toenails. An ingrown toenail can allow foot fungus to get under the nail.
  • Protect your feet—In public places like locker rooms, showers, and pool areas, protect your feet with shower shoes or sandals to help avoid contacting the microbes.

For difficult fungal toenail infections, nail avulsion surgery may be necessary to completely eradicate the fungi. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors that includes Geoffrey C. Epstein, DPM, Matthew J. Tavroff, DPM, Stuart B. Leon, DPM and Robert J. Leon, DPM is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.

4 Foot Problems Encountered by Kids

Children often develop a variety of foot and ankle problems as they grow. However, they may not communicate those issues directly, so you need to be aware of specific signs. For example, tiptoeing or limping may possibly indicate an ingrown toenail. It’s always best to have an evaluation performed by your foot doctor to properly identify and treat problems before they worsen.

3 foot problems often encountered in children include the following:

  1. Overpronation—Children frequently encounter arch problems like overpronation (flat feet) as their feet are growing. While having flexible flat feet is normal in children, you should keep abreast of the situation as the child continues to grow to make sure the arches are forming properly. See your foot doctor for a proper evaluation at least once a year during these developmental periods.
  2. Warts—Painful plantar warts that grow in the plantar fascia on the bottom of the child’s foot can be difficult to diagnose. These warts are often covered by thickened skin and should be treated by your podiatrist. Warts are very common in children and can be spread by contact, so always have warts properly treated.
  3. Sever’s disease—Since the bone growth plates are not yet fully developed in children, they are susceptible to problems like Sever’s disease. Osgood-Schlatter disease is a similar problem that develops in the knees. Your child may need to curtail exercise activities until the natural growth process corrects these temporary plate abnormalities.

For the proper care of your children’s feet, contact your podiatrist. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors that includes Geoffrey C. Epstein, DPM, Matthew J. Tavroff, DPM, Stuart B. Leon, DPM and Robert J. Leon, DPM is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.

How To Avoid Fungal Toenail Infections

When the fungi that cause a fungal toenail infection get underneath your toenail, the nasty little microbes can cause the nail to become yellow, thick, and brittle with a terrible odor in many cases. Fungal toenails can be hard to fix once the infection has become advanced, so see your podiatrist if this is the case. Preventing contact with the microbes in the first place is the best way to avoid a fungal infection.

 To avoid toenail fungus infections, adopt the following practices:

  • Clean and dry your feet regularly—Wash and dry your feet once or preferably twice a day. Let your shoes dry out between wearings to help eliminate the moisture that fungi love.
  • Use antifungal sprays—on your feet and in your shoes to kill any lingering fungi.
  • Cut your toenails properly—to avoid painful ingrown toenails that often lead to a fungal toenail infection. The nail can break the skin and allow the microbes to get in.
  • Wear shoes that allow your feet to breathe—Wear lightweight, breathable socks that wick away moisture. Choose shoes that are lined with Gore-Tex or other breathable fibers.
  • Keep your feet protected—Remember to wear shower shoes or sandals in public locker rooms, pool, and shower areas to decrease your contact with the microbes.

If you are experiencing the pain and discomfort of a fungal toenail infection, see your foot doctor for the proper care. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.

Understanding Bunions

bunions10Up to 60 percent of older adults are affected by a foot disorder, including bunions. Known as one of the more common foot disorders, bunions form as a bony bump on the side of your foot, near the base of the big toe. Bunions can be caused by genes or by wearing ill-fitting tight shoes for long periods of time. Preventing the progression of your bunions involves wearing properly-fitting shoes that accommodate your toes, are not too high in heels, and have good arch support.

Bunions can be very troublesome if they are not treated correctly. If you are having problems with your bunions contact one of our podiatrists from ETL Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs by the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why do Bunions Form?

  • Genetics – susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary
  • Stress on the feet – poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can cause bunions to form

How are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in Melville and Briarwood, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Foot and Knee Injuries Affect Overall Health

foot-pain4Understanding your body is crucial toward treatment and prevention of knee and foot injuries. Knee and foot injuries can occur as a result of any physical activity, such as running or even just walking. The knee joint in particular is a complex joint, surrounded by ligaments, allowing us to walk and run. Knee injuries can become especially severe if left untreated, potentially leading to a loss of muscle strength and mobility over time. It’s recommended to seek the advice of your podiatrist and possibly follow up with physical therapy treatment. Surgery is also a potential treatment option, depending on the severity of the injury.

Regardless of season or weather, everyday foot care should be practiced year round. For more information about everyday foot care, contact one of our podiatrists from ETL Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Everyday Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. After all, without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks. It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before, for example.

For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops.

Also, wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in Melville and Briarwood, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Ingrown Toenails: Causes and Preventions

ingrown-toenailIngrown toenails can occur when too much pressure is exerted on the toenails, typically on the big toenail. Ingrown toenails, if left untreated, are painful and can potentially lead to infection. Understanding your daily routine is vital to prevention. If you exercise often or wear high heels, take heed of your shoes. Improperly-fitting shoes and socks can contribute to the development of ingrown toenails. Make sure to take proper care of your toenails, keep your cuticles intact and cut your toenails straight across.

Ingrown toenails can be an easy fix if treated properly. If you are suffering from an ingrown toenail, contact one of our podiatrists from ETL Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in Melville and Briarwood, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Morton’s Neuroma Painful, but Treatable

mortons-neuroma2Morton’s neuroma affects about 30 percent of people, and exists as a condition in which the foot’s second toe may be larger than the big toe. Because of this irregularity, this can lead to overpronation as we do everyday activity, resulting in inflammation of the nerve between the second and third metatarsals. This is known as Morton’s neuroma. Treating your Morton’s neuroma involves seeing your doctor, wearing prescribed orthotics and possibly injections or surgery as a last option.

Morton’s neuroma can be a difficult condition to contend with. If you are experiencing symptoms of Morton’s Neuroma, contact one of our podiatrists from ETL Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Morton’s Neuroma
Morton’s neuroma is a painful foot condition that commonly affects the areas between the third and fourth toe and the ball of the foot, although other areas of the foot are also susceptible to this condition. Morton’s neuroma is caused by an inflamed nerve in the foot that is being squeezed and aggravated by surrounding bones.  Women are more likely than men to have an occurrence of this foot condition.

What Increases the Chances of having Morton’s Neuroma?
-Ill-fitting high heels or shoes that add pressure to the toe or foot area.
-Jogging, running and any sports that involve constant impact to the foot area.
-Flat feet, bunions, and any other foot deformity may put you at a higher risk for developing Morton’s neuroma.

If you suspect that you may have this condition, you should visit your podiatrist. A podiatrist will first conduct a thorough physical examination to check for palpable masses between the bones of the foot.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in Melville and Briarwood, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Tips for Taking Care of Your Diabetic Feet

diabetic-foot-care4Taking care of your diabetic feet is of utmost importance in making sure that you stay healthy. Avoid going barefoot and always wear shoes. Walking barefoot as a diabetic patient can lead to an increased risk of injury. Routine foot exams should be conducted daily to check for any wounds, small or large, as if they are left untreated they can lead to further complications. When choosing footwear, make sure that your shoes are comfortable and properly-fitting. Avoid tight-fitting or point shoes such as high heels. Do not use hot or cold packs on any foot injury as this can increase your risk of skin injury or infection. Avoid sitting cross-legged for long periods of time as this can impair blood flow in the legs. Maintain proper foot hygiene by cleaning and your feet daily, making sure to dry thoroughly. Trim your toenails straight across so as to avoid infection.

Diabetics must pay special attention to their feet to help prevent any complications. If you believe you are having problems with your diabetic feet, contact one of our podiatrists from ETL Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. Diabetes can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, including the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels because blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in Melville and Briarwood, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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