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The holidays are here which means your days are full of working, running errands, shopping, wrapping presents, visiting family, and all of the other Holiday traditions. The madness of holiday shopping and traveling can add up to painful feet. Luckily, there are some very easy steps you can take to alleviate pain and reduce swelling.

Here are 5 things you can do to help save your feet from injury or pain during your crazy holiday schedule.

  1.  Massaging your feet increases circulation, relieves tension and rejuvenates skin. Use a frozen water bottle to both ice and massage your feet at the same time.
  2.  Point your toes for a quick and easy toe stretch. Then curl your toes and hold for 10 seconds.
  3.  Hold the heel of your foot in your hand and rotate your ankles to loosen the ankle joint and relax feet.
  4.  Wear appropriate shoes for your activity. If you know you will be walking around for a long period of time, do not wear high heels.
  5.  Elevating your legs will reduce the swelling in your feet. Make sure they are elevated above your heart

If you have chronic foot pain and swelling, come see us at University Foot & Ankle Centers.

We hope you and yours have a wonderful, pain free, holiday season!

As the days grow shorter and colder weather moves in, the affects can be felt on every part of our body, including our feet. Hopefully you have found the right winter shoes and put your flip-flops and sandals away for the season.  Winter is here and this season has it’s own set of foot problems.  Here are two of the most common foot issues we see this time of year and how to check your feet for them:


Chilblains are a common cold weather foot problem.  Chilblains are small, red, itchy swellings on the skin. They are caused when the skin is exposed to cold weather for long periods of time. In the cold, the blood vessels in your toes get smaller in size. When your toes get warm again, the blood vessels go back to their normal size. If your toes get warm too fast, blood can leak out of the blood vessels and cause the redness, swelling, blistering, and pain associated with chilblains. Chilblains usually form on the smaller toes, but they can also develop on areas of the feet that carry more pressure.

The good news is that chilblains can be treated. There are lotions and creams that your podiatrist can prescribe to get rid of the redness and itchiness.  If not treated correctly, chilblains can become a bigger problem. If you do not take care of the problem, chilblains can lead to ulcers.


Raynaud’s disease

Raynaud’s disease affects small blood vessels, like the ones in toes. The blood vessels get smaller and this shrinkage causes less oxygen to reach the skin. A patient with Raynaud’s disease will see their toes turn colors. The toes will change color in the following order: white, blue, and then red. The color of the toes is based on temperature, how much blood is able to reach the skin, and how much oxygen is able to reach the skin.

At your next University Foot & Ankle Center appointment let your podiatrist know of any changes in your feet, especially color changes.  It is not common, but serious forms of Raynaud’s disease can lead to bigger problems.

Unfortunately, cold weather can be harder on the feet for people with conditions like poor circulation and diabetes. These conditions can make it harder for you to know when your feet are too cold. This is why it is important for you to bring your winter shoes with you to University Foot & Ankle Center when you have an appointment. Our podiatrists knows your feet and can let you know if your shoes have the right kind of support to keep your feet warm and dry.


University Foot & Ankle Center’s own Dr. Caroline Gannon was recently nominated and appointed to the Board of Directors for the Middle Tennessee Chapter of the Make-A-Wish® Foundation. Serving as the lead medical contact for the wish granting committee, Dr. Gannon will support the Foundation and board by continuing to build connections between Make-A-Wish and the Middle Tennessee medical community.

“As both a doctor and parent, the mission of Make-A-Wish is something I can easily identify with and wholeheartedly support,” Dr. Gannon stated. “Make-A-Wish is an organization that provides immense hope and joy for children and families during such a difficult time. It’s truly an honor to serve such an incredible cause and I’m excited to further connect the Middle Tennessee medical community to Make-A-Wish.”

Make-A-Wish of Middle Tennessee grants the wishes of children between 2 ½-18 years old and have life-threatening medical conditions, to enrich their experience with hope, strength and joy. The chapter serves 38 counties in the Middle Tennessee area and grants over 100 wishes every year Although it has become one of the world’s most well-known charities, Make-A-Wish® has maintained the grassroots fulfillment to serve children with life-threatening medical conditions and relies on the support of volunteers in the local community to accomplish their mission.

For stories of the lives impacted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Middle Tennessee, click here.

Do you want to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Middle Tennessee? Click here to learn more.