Best Podiatrist Melbourne
Posted on November 2, 2020
According to the Australian Podiatry Association, 89% of Australians suffer from foot pain at one point in their lives.
While this comes and goes for some, one in ten suffer constant foot pain. For some, the pain is bad enough to keep them from getting a good night’s sleep.
Unfortunately, the majority of people in Melbourne with foot pain never seek any help or treatment for it.
This lowers one's quality of life and can snowball into more significant health problems down to the line.
Here, learn all you need to know about proper foot care, what to look out for and the best avenues to get help.
When to Seek Help
Often, people ignore feet pain and discomfort because it’s assumed to be normal. If you have been up and about all day or wear heels to work, you might think it is normal to have painful feet or discomfort in your lower limbs.
This is true to a certain point.
However, if you notice the problems outlined, it's advisable to seek treatment or foot care advice from a podiatrist in Melbourne.
Who do I See for Feet Problems?
While most people that seek help for feet problems see their GP, the best thing to do would be to find a podiatrist in Melbourne.
A podiatrist is a healthcare professional that specializes in feet health and care. Aside from this, they treat injuries and help provide proper care for people with conditions that increase foot problems.
While a podiatrist is a doctor, professionals in this field do not go through the typical medical school programs. Instead, they go through their own training programs and later join their own professional associations.
Essentially, podiatrists in Melbourne can reset broken bones, perform surgical procedures, prescribe drugs, and order diagnostic tests.
If you have issues with your feet, visiting a Melbourne podiatry clinic gives you specialized help than seeing your GP.
Sports podiatry is also worth a mention. Sports podiatry treatment is often sought by athletes whose jobs expose their feet to a lot of pressure and impact. Athletes also see them for general foot care advice.
Common Feet and Lower Limb Problems
The first step to proper foot care is being able to recognize when something is wrong. This helps you differentiate what is normal from what is not, and ultimately, seek help for the latter.
Nail fungus starts as a yellow or whitish discoloration underneath your toenail. As the nail gets more infected, the nail can begin to crumble, thicken and discolor.
With time, the fingernail might deform, have a foul smell, or start spreading the infection to other toes.
It’s advisable to seek treatment soon after you notice nail fungus.
Numbness, swelling or pain in on foot
Occasional pain is expected, depending on the activities of the day. If you were on your feet all day, wore an extra high pair of heels, or participated in strenuous physical activity, you can experience some pain.
Note that this is often in both feet.
However, a sudden onset of numbness, pain, or swelling on one foot should be cause for concern. A qualified podiatrist can help get to the root cause of the numbing, swelling, or pain and get you on a treatment plan.
Constant heel pain
Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, though heel pain can stem from a variety of issues.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when the plantar fasciitis ligament gets damaged. This is often a result of putting too much pressure or strain on your feet.
These include stress fractures, arthritis, tendonitis, or nerve irritation.
Because there are several potential causes, constant heel pain should be properly diagnosed by a podiatrist so you can get on the best treatment options.
Recurring athlete’s foot
Athletes foot among the most common fungal infections podiatrists in Melbourne see in their line of work. It forms around the toes when people that tend to sweat a lot wear tight-fitting shoes for too long.
While it might not cause pain, it tends to sting, burn, and itch. The infection can also be passed on to other members of your household.
If you try home remedies or OTC’s and can’t get rid of the infection in two weeks, then you need specialized treatment. The same is true if the infection goes away with OTC drugs then comes recurs after a while.
You are diabetic
Diabetes increases one’s risk for other issues, among them, nerve damage, poor circulation, infections, and ulcers.
If you are diabetic, the best thing you can do is to see a podiatrist at least once a year. They can examine your feet, give foot care advice and offer treatment for budding issues before they grow into significant problems.
These commonly occur on the big toe. Ingrown nails come about when the corners of your toe nails grow into the skin surrounding your nail.
While you can treat these at home or at the nail salon, you risk causing complications, the risk of complications is higher when one has circulation issues or is diabetic. Instead, have a podiatrist safely carry out treatment procedures for this.
People who sweat a lot are likelier to get ingrown nails than those who don't. Older people have a higher risk, as well. This is likely because nails tend to thicken with age.
A bunion is a rough, bony that typically forms at the base of your toe. A bunion forms when the bones in the front of your foot shift.
When this happens, the tip of the big toe gets drawn towards the smaller fingers. This makes the joint of the big toe jut out. Often, the skin around the bunion turns sore and red.
As the bunion gets larger, the foot gets increasingly painful.
Bunions can develop from a medical condition like arthritis, the shape of your foot and tight-fitting, pointy shoes.
Aside from the big toe, your feet can also get bunions on the small toe. This is definitely something podiatrists in Melbourne can give treatment for.
Corns and calluses
Corns and calluses are dry, hardened, waxy parts of skin that form when your skin attempts to protect itself against pressure and friction.
For most people, relieving the pressure of friction causing the corns and calluses tends to ease the discomfort.
If the home treatment fails, visit a Melbourne podiatry clinic for help.
Ankle or foot joint pain
Again, most people experience ankle, joint pain or lower limb pain after rigorous activities, an injury, or from being on their feet for too long.
This is, however, something that should resolve with pain killers and a massage or cold compress.
If it lingers or seems to appear out of nowhere, then your best option is to see a podiatrist.
When Should I See a Podiatrist in Melbourne Vic 3124
While some can be treated or managed at home or with over the counter drugs, others need more specialized care.
If you have any of the issues discussed below, it’s indeed time to visit the podiatrist clinic.
Your quality of life is lowered
Have you noticed a change in gait that makes you change your normal walking style? Or maybe you cringe at the thought of having to walk, work out or even run around after your kids.
These things indicate a lowered quality of life and is something you should discuss with a podiatrist.
Changes in skin appearance
Peeling, bleeding, cracked, or swollen skin on your foot is indicative of an underlying problem. The same is true for when you have visible veins.
A podiatrist can examine these and provide away forward.
Altered walking style
Pain in certain areas of your foot can cause you to change your gait in order to lessen the amount of pressure you place on your foot.
While this might work on the short term, it starts to change your posture over time. It can also cause strain to other parts of your feet and legs, causing even more lower limb pain and damage.
After lifestyle changes
You should see a podiatrist when you become pregnant, after you have had the baby and whenever you gain or lose too much weight at once.
Being pregnant relaxes the ligaments in your body. Relaxed ligaments and the normal pregnancy weight gain can affect your feet in different ways.
On the other hand, gaining a lot of weight quickly puts more stress on your feet.
In both scenarios, seeing the best podiatrists in Melbourne ensures you get the correct foot care advice.
Losing feeling in any of your lower limbs should be cause for concern. Most people tend to ignore feelings of numbness because it's not painful; this is a mistake.
It might not be anything serious, but you cannot make this determination without seeing a podiatrist. It is always essential to see a podiatrist to rule out severe conditions and ensure the numbness is not a sign of a progressive medical problem.
If you have discomfort that persists even with a massage and pain relievers, its best to see a podiatrist.
This, even more so when there is nothing you can point to as the cause of the discomfort.
If your heel is especially in pain in the mooring after stepping off the bed, you definitely need to see a foot specialist to get to the root of the problem.
Foot Care Tips
It’s surprising how many people have a care regimen for most parts of their body, but forget their feet.
Taking good care of your feet can go a long way in helping you prevent some foot problems.
Here are some simple, actionable tips for your whole family.
- Keep your feet clean and dry at all times. This can prevent fungal infections from taking root. Fungus likes warm, moist areas. Drying your feet thoroughly ensure you do not create a good environment for them to thrive
- Regularly examine your feet and take note of any changes, from your heel to in-between your toes. This is a simple routine you can do after bathing
- See your podiatrist for regular check-ups. If any issues are coming up, they can be detected and resolved early
- Cut toenails straight across. Avoid cutting too close to the skin and rounding them too much as this can expose the sensitive skin under your nails to infections and ingrown nails as well
- If you notice a fungus on your nail, seek remedies for it. Covering the nail with nail polish only exacerbates the problem
- Public areas like swimming pool, gyms and locker rooms get a lot of foot traffic. They are also breeding grounds for infection-causing fungus. Ensure to have footwear at all times when in these places to protect your feet
- Your feet have hundreds of thousands of sweat glands, which explains why they sweat as much as they do. Sweat creates a good environment for bacteria to grow and multiply. Wearing good quality cotton socks can help keep your feet dry, hence, fewer bacteria and fewer infections.
- Wearing leather and mesh fabric shoes allows your feet to breathe, which helps keep them fresh, dry, and healthy. Also, kick off your shoes whenever you can so as to aerate your feet.
- Always buy shoes that fit correctly. In the same breath, avoid pointy shoes. These tend to compress your feet into a tiny space that can distort your bones and ligaments.
- Avoid self-medicating and bathroom surgery. These attempts at self-treatment can create more problems instead of resolving existing ones. The best thing you can do for yourself is to identify the best podiatrists in Melbourne and consult them whenever you have issues with your feet.
Take Better Care of Your Feet Today
Even though often ignored, the feet are among the important parts of the body. They allow you to walk properly, run, work-out and other day to day functions.
It’s therefore a pity that they do not get much thought in matters of self-care. However, it’s never too late to practice healthy feet habits. The best advice: examine your feet today and begin from there.
If you find any of the above concerns in your feet or those of your young ones, kindly contact Oliver Tate, from Stride Podiatry Clinic for an appointment.