How to have Happy Feet!
Patients often say to me that they know very little about their feet or foot care, and how often, or when, they should have their feet professionally checked. They are surprised that there is not more advice about Podiatry and foot health, in comparison to the health education campaigns directed at dental health, smoking, obesity etc.
As well as failure on the part of the health educators however, there are many other contributing factors to this reluctance to ‘consider our feet’. For instance, the importance of fashion footwear to image/confidence/peer acceptance – primarily of concern to women/girls, but increasingly involving men/teenage boys.
For centuries shoe design has been about far more than just a method of protecting the feet and keeping them warm, hence the extreme styles (and price tags!) of some designer creations. With this in mind goes a fear that, if you consult a Podiatrist, they are going to tell you to throw out all your pretty shoes and wear flat lace-ups all the time (Not true!). Or that you would have to lie about the usual shoes worn, because, deep down, you know that those wonderful 6” heel chisel toe boots are what are crucifying your feet – so easier to suffer or buy a corn plaster than to seek professional help (Not true!)
Also, disinterest plays its part. A recent patient said to me (as I looked, horrified, at the state of her feet!) – “Well I never look at my feet, do I! They are just at the end of my legs – too far to see properly and not easy to reach. I wash them and put on clean stockings every few days. If something hurts I just put up with it until it goes away – but I’ve had this sore toe for about 6 months now and it’s a real nuisance, so I thought I had better get it looked at”. Such a shame – had she sought treatment earlier she might have avoided surgery for infection of the bone!
It all comes back to foot health awareness and education! So what should you do? Firstly, seek professional help straightaway if you develop a problem with your feet (ensure that the Podiatrist that you see is HCPC registered). Most things can be treated quickly and painlessly. However, a new foot problem can, on occasion, be the first sign of a more involved issue, so don’t ignore it and hope it will go away. A foot health ‘check up’ every six months or so is also advisable.
Get to know your feet! That may sound strange, but the more often you handle your feet, massage them, and carry out daily foot care (pumice stone, moisturiser etc.) the quicker you will notice any changes developing or areas of tenderness. For those who find it difficult to reach their feet, many long handled aids are available through Mobility shops and online.
Footwear is the other all important factor. Ensure that the shoes you are wearing are ‘fit for purpose; High heels, “slip ons”, ballet pumps etc. may be fine for evenings out, but will do your feet no favours if worn as an ‘every day’ shoe. A strap, Velcro fastening, lace up or well fitting boot will hold the shoe on your foot and your heel back, so that your foot can function properly. Correct width, length and depth of toe box are essential to prevent rubbing and cramping of toes. It is vital that children have correctly fitted shoes as their bones are soft and easily distorted.
(article from p.22 Marlborough Newsletter)
Marlborough Podiatry Clinic
10 The Parade, Marlborough, SN8 1NE
10 The Parade, Marlborough SN8 1NE
No referral is necessary to attend the Clinic.
For information regarding appointment availability, fees and claiming on your health insurance, please ring the Clinic.
8.30am - 6pm Monday to Friday
9am - 1pm on Saturdays.
Tel: 01672 514581
Mobile: 07910 525376
There are 3 steps up within the clinic entrance