Your feet are the foundation of your whole body but how many times have we ignored, or put up with pain in them?
18 April 2019| Last updated on 21 April 2019
Is this because we normalize the pain we experience or is it because we are unsure where to go for the correct treatment?
Even the tiniest corn or ingrowing toenail can have a huge impact on our body as a whole. Our posture to the way that we walk can be affected, but also the choices we make in our daily lives such as which shoes to wear or even avoiding certain activities that may trigger pain.
Podiatrists are foot health experts who are trained to prevent, diagnose, treat and rehabilitate medical conditions of the feet and lower limbs.
Some of the common conditions they treat include:
- Ingrown Toenail
- Nail Conditions (e.g. fungal nails)
- Flat feet
- Painful Conditions in the feet (heel pain, arch pain etc.)
- Diabetic Foot complications
- Wounds on the feet
It's very important to have your feet checked regularly if you have a health condition that affects your feet, such as diabetes, poor circulation or a low immune system.
Conditions of the feet can have an impact on anyone in our family at any age and at any time.
Here are some tips for keeping those feet healthy:
- Wash your feet often
Keep your feet clean by washing them every day in warm soapy water, but don't soak them, as this might destroy your skin's natural oils. It is equally important that you dry your feet thoroughly after washing them, especially between the toes, which is where fungal infections can develop.
Apply moisturising cream all over the foot, but NOT between the toes. If your skin is dry then opt for a cream with 10% urea in it.
- Cut toenails carefully
Cut your nails straight across. Never cut them at an angle or down the edges as this may cause ingrown toenails. If you experience an ingrown toenail then book an appointment with your Podiatrist – Avoid self treating as this can make them worse and lead to an infection.
- Avoiding foot odour
Socks made of cotton, wool or bamboo allow your feet to breathe and help keep them at the right temperature. Change socks daily to reduce the risk of a fungal infection, using antifungal foot deodorants can also help with this.
- Protect your feet in communal areas
Wearing flip-flops or pool shoes well help avoid contracting infections such as athlete's foot (fungal) and verrucas (viral) when using public areas such as gym showers or swimming pools.
- Take care with flip-flops
Flip-flops do not provide your foot with any support which can lead to heel and arch (plantar fascia) pain. Avoid wearing flip-flops all the time and always wear the right shoes for the job – not sandals for hiking or boots for running!
- Nail Polish
It is important to give your nails a break from using nail polish or gel as these act as a barrier between the nail and the air. If the nail is unable to ‘breathe’ moisture can get trapped between the layers and lead to an optimal environment for fungus to grow.
For appointments please call 8001999 or visit our website Mediclinic Parkview Hospital.
Authored by Dr Sarah Cann
Mediclinic Parkview Hospital