Tag Archives: Tips

Insurance Card Updates – Presented by our own Sarah Mueller

There have been some slight changes when it comes to the use of insurance cards, so we want to update you right away! Acting as our guide is Sarah Mueller. Sarah is a Quad City native who has been a terrific part of our office for three years now. She loves what she does, so she has been kind enough to explain these recent developments.

Medicare and many other providers have updated their insurance cards to make them more secure for patients. Because of this change, we are asking all of our patients to bring in their updated insurance card, as well as their most recent list of medications with dosages to their appointments. This allows us to bring you the best care possible, seamlessly and easily. We are not alone in this update, many medical offices across the country are participating in this new practice.

Sarah reassures us that if you don’t have your new card or an updated list on hand, they are easy to organize! For a new card, simply contact your insurance provider or employer if your insurance is through them, and ask them. Some patients will have received them already and some might still be waiting for them to arrive, so your provider will be able to tell you where you are in this process. For a recent list of medications with dosages, you can contact your primary care physician, or in some cases your pharmacy, and they can provide you with that information. Do not worry if you forget your medication list at your next appointment, in most cases we are able to call your physician and acquire it that way, but this takes more time.

Don’t worry about billing! All of the same documentation will be used as before, and by providing your new card, we can ensure you will see no lapses in coverage, billing or care. Our goal in this update is to continue to provide you with top-tier foot care and pain treatment in the most secure way possible. By bringing your new insurance card and up-to-date medication list, you are helping us ensure we are giving you the most effective course of treatment and putting the spring back in your step as quickly as possible! Of course, if you ever have any questions, feel free to drop by the office or give us a call at (309) 762-7919.

How to Avoid Winter Foot Conditions

Even though the holidays are officially over and temperatures have been normalizing a bit, be mindful that sudden temperature drops may happen anytime and cause uncomfortable foot conditions. This is even more relevant for those who participate in winter sports.  So, here are the top five winter foot conditions:

1. Chilblains

Chilblains occur when the blood vessels in your skin do not respond in time to sudden temperature changes. Symptoms may include small, itchy red spots, blistering or skin ulcers, and swollen burning skin. In order to avoid chilblains, limit your exposure to cold, cover all exposed skin as much as possible, bundle up to keep your body warm and do not smoke.

2. Raynaud’s Phenomenon

Raynaud’s Phenomenon occurs when your blood circulation is limited in certain areas of your body, especially your fingers and toes.  This low blood circulation causes these areas of your body to feel numb and cold. This often happens due to cold temperatures or stress. Prevent Raynaud’s Phenomenon by keeping your house and office warm and by being cautious when you are outdoors.

3. Skier’s Toe

Are you a fan of skiing? While it is certainly fun, please keep in mind your toes. If you notice your toenail has become black, it is likely you have bleeding under your nail, or “subungual hematoma”. This condition can be caused by trauma or continuous use of tight shoes. Make sure your socks fit and your boots have enough room for your toes to avoid this condition.

4. Morton’s Neuroma

Did you know winter boots may cause Morton’s Neuroma if they don’t fit properly?  With this condition, you can feel as if you are standing on a pebble in your shoes, experience a burning pain in the ball of your foot, as well as tingling or general numbness. Morton’s Neuroma may lead to foot deformities, so get fitting shoes and ask your podiatrist for treatment options.

5. Blisters

Similar to Morton’s Neuroma and Skier’s toe, foot blisters are caused by unfit shoes. To best prevent the condition, wear well-fitting socks and shoes. Do not attempt to wear those non-returnable unfit pairs of boots you got for Christmas. If you do get a blister, avoid popping it yourself. Instead, clean it with disinfectant and cover it with a bandage for protection. If it opens, make sure you pay a visit to your trusted podiatrist as soon as possible.

 

Everyday tips to take care of your feet

Our feet take us everywhere we need to go and as such, we should take care of them.  It isn’t difficult to set up a good foot care routine.  Following the items below will help prevent some of our most common foot problems.

  • Wash your feet with soap and water to make sure you get in and between toes. For extra pampering, soak your feet once a week in warm water with a few drops of peppermint or tea tree oil.  Use a pumice stone to gently exfoliate dead skin cells.
  • After washing, towel-dry your feet thoroughly. (Moisture between toes is a major cause of athletes’ foot).
  • Moisturize feet with a natural moisturizer.  Some brands are scented with mint or peppermint oil and others come in a rub-on stick, so they moisturize without making feet slippery.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and consider alternating pairs.  Don’t try to squeeze into a shoe that’s a half size too small, just because they’re just the style you like and on sale!  Also, having a spare pair to allow you’re the perspiration in your shoes to completely dry out for a day or so.

Foot resolutions

Tis the season for resolutions and our office would like you to remember your feet this season. We have ten tips to help keep your feet happy and healthy throughout 2014.

Keep your feet clean and dry. Any excess moisture between the toes can create a great environment for a fungal infection to begin.

Examine your feet for problems.

Cut toenails properly. Cut nails straight across and avoid trimming too close to the skin or drastically rounding the corners of the nails, which can cause painful, ingrown toenails.

Don’t hide “ugly” toenails with polish. Applying nail polish to an infected nail could make the problem worse.

Protect your feet in public areas. Be sure to wear shower shoes at the gym, in locker rooms, and at public pools.

Avoid sharing footgear.

Head off sweaty feet. Your feet have sweat glands galore — 250,000 in each foot! Perspiration creates the perfect environment for bacteria to set up shop.

Choose breathable footwear. To help keep your feet dry and healthy, wear shoes made of leather to allow air to circulate.

Wear shoes that fit properly. Shop for shoes at the end of the day to compensate for foot swelling that occurs later in the day, and wear the same type of socks or hosiery you’ll be wearing with the shoes.

Know when to see a doctor. Allowing a doctor to take a look will help prevent minor problems from becoming major ones

Most people think of tendonitis affecting the shoulders; did you know it can also affect your feet?

Do you feel pain in your feet or around your ankle after exercising? Running, walking, swimming and other activities can cause excessive strain on the tendons in your feet. Tendonitis can cause pain and, occasionally, swelling.

The most common cause of tendonitis in the feet is overuse. An increase in your exercise regimen can cause more strain on the tendons.

Before starting any physical activity, remember to stretch. Stretching your feet and ankles can help prevent tendonitis from developing. Also, be sure to wear properly fitting shoes. If you sense tendonitis symptoms, decrease your activity and apply cold compresses.

Recurring or severe pain may mean a rupture or tear in the tendon. Get your foot checked out if that happens.

Take it easy on your feet, and remember to stretch.