According to our Rockville, MD, podiatrist, gout affects over six million Americans. While doctors don't yet know what causes this disease, certain factors such as male gender, family history, nutrition, and specific diseases play a significant role in gout's development and progression. Read more to learn information about risk factors, symptoms, and what you can do at home if you have a flare up.
Advice About Gout Symptoms & Relief from Our Rockville, MD, Podiatrist
While the foods we eat and digest eventually produce uric acid, normal kidney function acts as a filter to get rid of any excess. People with gout have abnormal amounts of uric acid in their blood and tissues that can cause solid crystals to form within their joints – their bodies either produce extra uric acid, or their kidneys do not function properly to remove it.
Symptoms of Gout
Our Rockville podiatrist cautions that the symptoms of gout can resemble an injury – redness, swelling, and severe joint pain – but without you having experienced any trauma to the affected area. While gout can impact any one of your joints, such as the knee, elbow, or wrist, the most common place is in the base of your big toe. That's why our experienced podiatrist in Rockville is often the health care provider who treats patients suffering from gout pain.
Can Gout Be Prevented?
Patients can help prevent gout's painful flare-ups with certain lifestyle changes, advises our Rockville, MD, podiatrist. For example, research shows that some foods, alcoholic beverages, and stress can raise levels of uric acid in the body, so by limiting these factors, patients can help reduce the severity or frequency of these painful episodes.
Try These Methods for Pain Relief
If you experience a painful episode of gout in one of your joints, our podiatrist suggests that you get relief from your symptoms by trying the following
- Use ice to help reduce inflammation
- Elevate the affected joint on a pillow or soft surface
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated to keep uric acid levels from rising
- Avoid alcohol or fatty foods that can raise uric acid levels in the bloodstream
See Our Rockville, MD, Podiatrist for Advice About Your Gout
Don't let gout interfere with your life and the activities you love – our experienced foot care team at The Podiatry Center can help! Our podiatrist in Rockville, MD, will discuss a treatment plan to help manage and improve gout's painful symptoms.
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about foot-friendly gifts or other topics related to podiatry, feel free to contact The Podiatry Center, with a convenient podiatry office near Rockville, MD, by clicking here or by calling 301.656.6055.