Curious about the role of a podiatrist? “What does a podiatrist do?” is a common question.
Podiatrists are medical specialists who help with problems that affect your feet or lower legs. They can treat injuries as well as complications from ongoing health issues like diabetes. You might hear them called a podiatric physician or doctor of podiatric medicine.
What conditions can podiatrists treat?
Conditions Podiatrists Treat:
Podiatrists treat people of any age for many foot-related conditions, including:
Podiatrists regularly treat these common injuries when they affect the foot or ankle. They also work in sports medicine, treating foot problems athletes have and recommending ways to avoid them.
Bunions and hammertoes:
These are problems with the bones in your feet. A bunion happens when the joint at the base of your big toe gets bigger or is knocked out of place. That makes the toe bend toward the others. A hammertoe is one that doesn’t turn the right way.
These include issues like an infection in your nail caused by a fungus or an ingrown toenail. That’s when a corner or side of a nail grows into your toe instead of straight out.
This is a condition in which your body either doesn’t make a hormone called insulin or doesn’t use it the way it should. Insulin helps you digest sugar. Diabetes can damage the nerves in your feet or legs, and you might have trouble getting enough blood to your feet. Diabetes can cause serious complications. More than 65,000 people a year need to have their feet amputated by a doctor because of diabetes. A podiatrist can help prevent that. If you have diabetes, make sure to get any sores or calluses on your feet checked out.
This results from inflammation, swelling, and wear and tear on your joints. Each foot has 33 joints. A podiatrist might recommend physical therapy, drugs, or special shoes or inserts to help with your arthritis. Surgery might also be an option if other treatments don’t work well for you.
If your child’s feet turn inward or appear flat, or if their toes don’t align properly, a podiatrist could provide helpful solutions. This might involve recommending exercises, insoles, or braces. In some cases, they might even suggest surgery as an option.
Heel pain often results from heel spurs due to excess calcium buildup. Activities like running, ill-fitting shoes, or excess weight trigger them. Plantar fasciitis is inflammation along the foot’s underside, often tied to sports and improper footwear. Overpronation, or excessive bending in walking, affects athletes. Achilles tendinitis, causing pain where the tendon attaches, is also common. Initial solutions involve pain relief, orthotic inserts, and surgery for severe cases.
Nerve issues between the third and fourth bones of your foot can bring about pain, a burning sensation, and even the feeling that something is inside your shoe. This is particularly common among runners and tends to worsen with tight shoes and overpronation. For relief, a podiatrist can offer anti-inflammatory shots, help you discover the right orthotic, and, in more severe cases, suggest surgical removal if needed.
Reasons to See a Podiatrist
Your feet do a lot of work. By the time you’re 50, you’ll have walked 75,000 miles on them. Feet are complex structures with many bones, tendons, and ligaments that have to work together perfectly to keep you moving.
When should a client see a podiatrist?
Individuals with healthy feet should still visit a podiatrist once every year. The doctor can identify potential issues and recommend steps you can take to avoid problems and maintain healthy feet. Patients who have specific foot or ankle conditions, such as a history of foot ulcers, should see a podiatrist more often.
Do podiatrists cut toenails?
Your podiatrist can safely cut your nails and remove fungus without spreading it. They can also prescribe antifungal creams and sprays to help the nail heal.
How does a podiatrist diagnose?
These specialized doctors play a pivotal role by skillfully determining the optimal approach for addressing and recuperating from various lower extremity medical conditions and injuries. This involves conducting X-rays and lab tests, proficiently performing surgeries, prescribing necessary medications and orthotic devices, and engaging in a host of other essential activities.
Why do older people need a podiatrist?
Seniors are often unaware of the injuries they may sustain on their feet. Upon closer inspection of the feet and ankles, a local podiatrist can properly inspect the feet for cuts, bruises, swelling, or any other injuries that may otherwise go unseen.
Benefits of Podiatry Service:
- Podiatrists Are Experts in Foot and Ankle Care
- Enjoy Healthy Feet and Ankles
- Relieve Foot Pain
- Support Your Feet with the Right Footwear
FAQ About Podiatrist
What is the difference between a chiropodist and a podiatrist?
In some countries, such as Australia, the term "chiropodist" is no longer used. All podiatrists in Australia are now referred to as podiatrists.
Is a podiatrist a doctor?
Like those who have received a Doctor of Medicine academic degree (MD), podiatrists have a four-year doctorate in podiatric medicine (DPM). They also complete a three- to four-year residency in podiatry. They train in various clinical settings during residency, including hospitals, clinics, and private practices.
Podiatrists can perform various procedures, including surgery, injections, and casting. They can also prescribe medications and order physical therapy.
Podiatrists are essential members of the healthcare team. They are vital in preventing, diagnosing, and treating foot and ankle problems.
Do you need a referral to see a podiatrist?
However, your family physician may refer you to a podiatrist if you have a complex foot or ankle problem that requires specialized care.
For example, your doctor may refer you to a podiatrist if you have diabetes and are at risk of developing foot complications.
Suppose you are still determining whether you need a referral to a podiatrist. In that case, you can always ask your family doctor or the podiatrist's office.
Here are some of the benefits of seeing a podiatrist without a referral:
● You can get an appointment sooner.
● You can save time and money by avoiding seeing your doctor first.
● You can choose the podiatrist who is right for you.
Can a podiatrist remove calluses?
There are a few different ways that a podiatrist can remove a callus. The most common method is using a sterile scalpel to shave the thickened dead skin away. The podiatrist may also use a callus shaver, a sandpaper-like tool, or a pumice stone to remove the callus.
If the callus is deep or painful, the podiatrist may inject a local anesthetic to numb the area before removing the callus. Once the callus has been removed, the podiatrist will apply a bandage or dressing to the site.
Here are some of the benefits of having a podiatrist remove your calluses:
● It is safe and effective.
● It is quick and painless.
● It can help to prevent calluses from coming back.
● It can help to improve the appearance of your feet.
Can podiatrists give cortisone shots?
Podiatrists may give cortisone shots to treat a variety of foot and ankle conditions, including:
● Carpal tunnel syndrome
● Heel spurs
● Plantar fasciitis
Cortisone shots are usually very effective at reducing pain and inflammation. However, they do not cure any of the conditions listed above. The effects of a cortisone shot typically last for several weeks to months.
Suppose you are considering getting a cortisone shot. In that case, talking to your podiatrist about the risks and benefits is essential. Cortisone shots can have some side effects, such as:
● Pain and swelling at the injection site
● Skin discoloration
● Increased blood sugar levels
● Weakening of the bones
● Increased risk of infection
Suppose you have any underlying medical conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure. In that case, it is essential to let your podiatrist know before getting a cortisone shot.
Suppose you are considering getting a cortisone shot for your foot or ankle pain. In that case, I encourage you to talk to your podiatrist.
Can a podiatrist write a prescription?
Yes, a podiatrist can write a prescription. Podiatrists are qualified healthcare professionals with the same ability as other physicians to write drug prescriptions. They can write prescriptions for medications to address a range of issues in the foot and ankle, such as:
● Swelling and discomfort
● foot issues brought on by diabetes
● ailments of the skin
● Infections with fungi
● disease of the nails
For long-term ailments like gout and arthritis, podiatrists can also write prescriptions for medicines.
A podiatrist will consider the patient's needs and medical background when prescribing a prescription. They will also take into account any additional drugs the patient is taking.
Does a podiatrist deal with toenails?
Yes, Toenails are treated by a podiatrist. Podiatrists are medical specialists who identify and treat conditions affecting the feet and ankles, including nails on the toes.
Podiatrists can treat a variety of toenail conditions, including:
Ingrown toenails: An ingrown toenail is one in which the nail’s edge grows into the skin. Pain, swelling, and redness may result from this.
Fungal nails: A fungus that affects the toenails causes fungal nails. The nail may develop thick, discolored, and brittle layers. To treat fungal nails, podiatrists might recommend antifungal medicines.
Thickened toenails: Several things, such as injury, infection, and other medical disorders, can result in thickened toenails. Podiatrists can thin the nail and offer advice to stop it from becoming thicker in the future.
Brittle nails: Brittle nails are simple to snap. Aging, dry skin and certain medical disorders are just a few of the things that might contribute to this. To help strengthen brittle toenails, podiatrists might provide advice.
Additionally, podiatrists can trim toenails and offer guidance on correct toenail care.
How much does a podiatrist cost?
Finding a podiatric physician or doctor of podiatric medicine. in Dartmouth
If you are wondering how podiatrist may help you or are unidentified, whatever the problem is, our Doctor of podiatric Medicine and the rest of our team can help.
Holistichealing4life in Dartmouth provides podiatric treatment to our patients. Patients of all ages are invited to come in for an evaluation.
To begin your booking, please contact us at (902) 462-7600 or schedule an appointment online click here.