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What is Podiatry?
Podiatry is the field of medicine that specialises in assessing, diagnosing and treating conditions of the foot and lower limb. A podiatrist can also give you advice about foot care, gait analysis and on the best footwear for you and your family.
When do I need to see a podiatrist?
You should visit your podiatrist if:
- Your feet hurt – they will assess your condition and advise you on the best treatment.
- Your symptoms are getting worse – a problem isn’t improving naturally, or within three weeks of self care.
- You want to prevent a foot problem – a regular foot check can help to keep your feet healthy.
Here are some general tips to help prevent foot problems. Follow these simple steps to help keep your feet in tip-top shape and reduce your risk of developing any problems.
- Wash your feet every day – Use warm, soapy water and take care to dry your feet well, especially between your toes. This will help to prevent fungal infections such as athlete’s foot.
- Do regular calf stretches – Get into a routine of doing these every day to keep your feet supple.
- Pay attention to your socks – Wear well fitting soaks and change them every day to avoid sweaty feet.
- Trim your toenails – Use proper nail clippers and cut them straight across, not too short and not down at the corners, as this can lead to ingrown toenails.
- Keep your feet moisturised – If the skin on your feet is dry, put moisturiser on your feet before you go to bed. Make sure to avoid between your toes as this could lead to a fungal infection.
- Wear the right footwear – It’s important to make sure your shoes are the right size for your feet. Try to buy footwear in the afternoon when your feet are at their largest. Get your feet measured if you are unsure of your size.
- Rotate your shoes – Try not to wear the same shoes two days in a row. This will help to reduce the chance of developing a fungal infection.
- Vary your heel height – Keep high heels for special occasions as regular use can damage your feet.
- Check your feet regularly – Giving your feet the once over every week will help you to spot any possible problems quickly.