A Guide to Podiatry for Beginners

A podiatrist is known as a foot doctor. A doctor of podiatric medicine, or DPM, is another term for them.

This type of doctor or surgeon specialises in the foot, ankle, and leg-joining surgery. A chiropodist is an archaic term for a podiatrist that is still used sometimes.

Like other kinds of physicians and surgeons, podiatrists attend podiatric medical school for four years of study and training. They then receive experience in hospitals and clinics for at least three years of residency training.

Foot conditions

Podiatrists see patients of all ages. Most of them cure a variety of general foot ailments. This is comparable to having a family doctor or a primary care physician.

Some podiatrists specialise in certain areas of foot medicine. They might be experts in:

  • surgery
  • wound treatment
  • sports medicine
  • diabetes
  • paediatric

If your feet are in pain, you should consult a podiatrist. Even if you don’t have any foot discomfort, you should have your feet examined. A podiatrist can safely remove hard skin from your feet and carefully trim your toenails. They may also advise you on the appropriate shoes for your feet.

Common foot issues

The following are the most frequent foot problems:

  • blisters
  • warts
  • corns
  • calluses
  • ingrown toenails
  • bunions
  • nail infections
  • foot infections
  • heel discomfort
  • heel spurs
  • flat feet hammer dry or damaged heel skin Sprains in the toes caused by neuromas
  • Foot injuries caused by arthritis
  • muscle or ligament discomfort in the foot

Other podiatrists specialise in specific foot problems, such as:

  • bunion removal
  • fractures or shattered bones
  • tumours
  • skin and nail diseases
  • ulcers
  • artery disease
  • walking patterns
  • orthotics for corrective purposes (foot braces and insoles)
  • Amputations
  • prosthetic feet

Risk elements

Certain medical diseases might cause foot problems in certain persons. These are some examples:

  • obesity
  • diabetes
  • arthritis
  • high cholesterol
  • poor Circulation
  • stroke
  • heart disease

People with diabetes are more likely to have foot issues. Keep an eye out for any changes in how your feet feel. Keep a notebook of any foot-related indications and symptoms. Foot discomfort might be relieved by treating the underlying cause.

Why should you consult a podiatrist?

If you experience discomfort or an injury in any portion of your foot, you should consult your family doctor and a podiatrist. You may also consult with different types of specialists. Physical therapy may also be beneficial to your symptoms.

Your family doctor or general practitioner can check your foot to determine the source of your discomfort. Foot pain tests and scans include:

  • blood test
  • nail swab
  • ultrasound
  • X-ray
  • MRI scan

When should you consult a podiatrist?

The foot is composed of 26 bones. This intricate region of your body also includes joints, tendons, ligaments, and muscles.

Your feet’s components are all meant to support your weight and assist you in standing, walking, and running. Foot discomfort might make it difficult to move. In addition, some medical disorders might harm your feet if not addressed appropriately.

If you are unable to walk or put weight on your foot, contact your podiatrist or family doctor immediately.