By Dr. Jed H. Erickson:
“If you cross your eyes they’ll stay that way!” Old myths like this, that we often believed as children, are fun to laugh at. However, there are other myths that are no joke, especially when your health is involved.
From bunions to broken toes, the podiatrists at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle have heard it all. Here are six common myths about foot care and the truths behind them:
Myth: Shoes cause bunions.
Truth: Shoes that crowd the toes can make bunions more painful over time, but shoes themselves do not cause bunions. Bunions are usually caused by a faulty mechanical structure of the foot that is inherited. The bunion itself is not inherited, but certain foot types that make people prone to developing a bunion. There are treatments that can ease the pain of bunions, however, only surgery will correct the deformity.
Myth: Corns have roots.
Truth: Corns, unlike calluses, have a central core of hard material, they do not, however, have roots. A corn is a build-up of skin caused by friction. In fact, many corns result from a hammertoe deformity where the toe knuckle rubs against your shoe. The only way to rid yourself of these corns is to have the hammertoe condition surgically corrected. Attempting to cut off a corn on your own could result in a serious infection, and potentially amputation. Visit one of our podiatrists to have your corn evaluated and treated safely.
Myth: Cutting a notch in a toenail will ease the pain of ingrown toenails.
Truth: If a toenail is ingrown, the nail curves down and grows into the skin. Cutting a notch into the nail does nothing, and the new nail growth will continue to curve downwards. In fact, cutting a notch can potentially cause more problems, and is sometimes painful. In most cases, a simple surgical procedure will fix an ingrown toenail.
Myth: If I can walk on it, my foot or ankle can’t be broken.
Truth: Depending on your threshold for pain, and the severity of the injury, it is possible to walk on a foot or ankle with a broken bone- but it is not recommended. Continuing to walk on a broken bone can cause further damage to your foot or ankle. If you have injured your foot or ankle stay off it until it has been diagnosed by one of our foot and ankle doctors.
Myth: It is normal to experience foot pain as you get older.
Truth: It is not normal to experience foot pain at any age. If you are experiencing any pain in your feet, request, an appointment with one of our foot doctors as soon as possible for a proper diagnosis and treatment.
Myth: Doctor’s cannot fix a broken toe.
Truth: There are steps we can take to make a broken toe heal better and prevent further problems like arthritis and toe deformities. When broken toes aren’t treated correctly, it can also make walking and wearing shoes difficult. If you have injured your toe, visit us right away. We will x-ray your toe to learn more about the fracture. If it is out of alignment, a pin, screw, or plate may have to be inserted to reposition the bone. Other broken toe treatment options include rest, splinting, and buddy taping.
The above-mentioned conditions can all be treated by any of the friendly foot doctors here at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle. If you are experiencing any of these problems, please give us a call. Our foot and ankle care doctors and surgeons are board-certified by the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery and are members of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons and the American Podiatric Medical Association. Call (208) 855-5955 or request an appointment online.
About Dr. Erickson: Dr. Erickson a graduate of Rigby High School in Southeastern Idaho, studied at Brigham Young University where he earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology degree and studied at the Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine at Rosalind Franklin University of Science and Medicine. Following medical school, Dr. Erickson completed a three-year Podiatric medical and surgical residency at the Kentucky Podiatric Residency Program at Norton Healthcare, in Louisville, Kentucky.