Last year I had an issue with an ingrown toenail on my foot, and I decided to consult a specialist, also known as a podiatrist. Now, you may or may not have heard about these specialists before, and so I wanted to write a piece on what exactly a podiatrist does, and how they could potentially help you.
In short a podiatrist is a foot expert, and someone who deals with all matter of issues regarding the feet. Within this, there are many different types of treatments, ailments and medical issues which they will take care of. I spoke to one of the best podiatrist Sydney has to offer, in order to find out a little more about their job.
One of the main tasks for podiatrists is to work on chronic foot issues such as bone problems and pain. In order to best treat the patient and give them the results that they are looking for, a podiatrist will focus on the biomechanics of the foot. In order to do this, the specialist will assess the movement of the foot, they will look at the structure of the foot and they will also view the shape and motion of the limb, to best assess the problems and the ongoing treatment.
Another aspect of a podiatrist’s work is to assess long term damage to the feet and systemic diseases such as arthritis. Many of the effects of such systemic diseases can produce a variety of consequences such as damage to the skin, the nails and the movement of the feet. Podiatrists will examen such issues in detail, in order to assess the best course of action moving forward. In many cases a degenerative disease may not be curable, but a podiatrist can put steps in place to alleviate the symptoms of such ailments.
Much of the work which podiatrists do comes down to injuries, often caused by sporting events. When you think about it, almost every sport involves some degree of walking or running, leaving our feet vulnerable to injury. In many cases the injury will be short term and the podiatrist will need to do nothing more than review the foot and offer support or treatment. With this being said, most of these issues will be treated in a hospital, private podiatry clinics will be used for injuries which are more long term. Injuries may see podiatrists resetting bones, measuring and designing a variety of supports to encourage the body to naturally cure itself, or even offering exercises and training routines for the patient.
On top of the three tasks mentioned above, podiatrists also deal with general wellbeing issues such as poor smelling feet, dry skin or nail issues. These problems can often be cosmetic rather than medical, but still play an important role in the day-to-day life of a podiatrist.