A podiatrist, if you're not familiar with the word, is a foot doctor. They specialize in all things related to the feet and the ankle area. For many people, the idea of a podiatrist is an afterthought—the type of doctor you see for a specific injury or other medical problem that can be treated, and then the problem is behind you. But there are many people who should see a podiatrist as a routine aspect of their health care. The following are three different situations when you should be seeing a podiatrist regularly.
If you are a diabetic
Diabetes can cause a variety of problems that relate specifically to your feet. It is for this reason that you should have a podiatrist helping you the same way an ophthalmologist can help with diabetic-related problems with your eyes. Diabetes can create circulation issues that affect the feet. High glucose levels can also mean a slower amount of time for cuts and sores to heal. What may be a common blister for another person can become a problem for a diabetic. In addition, the onset of neuropathy, or nerve damage, can result in less feeling in your feet. A podiatrist can help instruct you on proper foot care if this begins to happen.
You have plantar fasciitis
The long muscle on the bottom of your foot can tear, producing a lot of pain when you walk. When this happens, you will need treatment, but for many people, it is something that you must live with. A podiatrist can teach you stretching exercises to reduce pain. They can also help with shoe selection for pain relief. For a chronic case of plantar fasciitis, a podiatrist can provide regular injections of cortisone. If your condition is severe, there are certain surgeries that may help as well.
You have arthritis pain
Pain from arthritis that affects your feet and ankles is an ongoing problem that, once diagnosed, you will likely have for the rest of your life. A podiatrist can help bring relief from your pain with a variety of methods. Steroids and other anti-inflammatory medications are a fundamental treatment, but there are a variety of devices that can relieve pain, including shoes, arch supports, braces, and other items designed to reduce stress on your feet. There is the possibility of physical therapy, depending upon the nature of the arthritis.
If you are not sure whether you should be seeing a podiatrist, you can consult with your primary care physician for advice concerning your particular health issue relating to your feet, or contact a podiatry office like Laurel Podiatry Associates, LLC to learn more.Share
30 October 2017
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