It’s pretty well known that podiatrists and chiropodists deal with things like corns, verrucas and even bunions, but you may not realise that a podiatrist’s expertise spans much further than these common conditions.
In a straightforward sentence, podiatrists are experts in all conditions relating to the lower half of your body. All parts of your body are connected, so having one go-to person who knows all about your body’s entire lower half is brilliant! If you have painful feet, this may have an impact on the way you stand or walk, and the way you stand or walk can easily lead to problems with your legs and hips. Podiatrists are knowledgeable specialists in all of these areas.
You’re probably aware of how your podiatrist can help you with verrucas, corns and calluses, ingrown toenails and diabetic foot care, just to name a few; however, hip, knee, ankle and back pain can all originate from the feet. For example, problems with heel pain may lead to a change in your gait, which could lead to poor posture and, in turn, lead to pain in your back. Luckily your podiatrist can help you in all sorts of ways.
Your podiatrist may be able to assist in detecting and managing medical conditions which first appear in feet. Take arthritis as an example. There’s an incredible number of joints in the foot (30 to be precise), meaning arthritis often initially takes hold here. Your podiatrist may be able to detect and help you manage this condition before it worsens and begins to affect other parts of the body.
Gait analysis and biomechanical assessment
In order to get a complete picture of how you walk, your podiatrist may suggest a gait analysis. During a gait analysis, your podiatrist will be looking at your lower limbs as a whole. They’re looking at how these limbs work together as a unit, so your feet, knees, legs and pelvis are all evaluated as part of this assessment.
In order to see where pressure is being applied to the soles of your feet, your podiatrist may use a foot scanner. By using the technology of the foot scanner, we can see where the foot first meets the ground and ensure that an imbalance isn’t caused by any source of pain in the foot. This can allow us to identify causes of back, knee or hip pain and potentially prevent them before they get much worse.
We all know that keeping active is essential to our overall health and well-being, but some activities can lead to injury. Often simple things such as incorrect footwear or poorly fitting shoes are to blame for a common foot problem. We advise consulting with the local podiatrist if you regularly experience pain in your feet after exercise, blisters, corns or calluses. Your podiatrist can advise on the correct footwear as well as assist with any existing foot injuries or pains.
Diabetic foot care
Taking care of your feet is especially important if you’re diabetic. Diabetes can cause nerve damage in the feet, which can give you a dulled sense of feeling in your feet. This means that even a minor foot injury like a cut or an ingrown toenail could become infected and, in extreme circumstances, can even lead to amputation. The Specialist knowledge of your podiatrist will allow them to make an early diagnosis for nerve damage in your feet and prevent any injuries from becoming worse than they should be.
We advise a regular check-up at our clinic to keep your feet in excellent condition. Call our friendly team or click here to book online to book an appointment.
*This blog contains general information about medical conditions and is not advice. You must not rely upon the information in this blog as medical advice. Medical advice should always be sought from an appropriately qualified podiatrist such as ourselves.