FAQ

"What is a Podiatrist?"

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"Frequently Asked Questions"

Here are some frequently asked questions and answers:

  • How to clip your finger nails and toenails?
  • Stretching Exercises
  • What is the most common condition that a podiatrist treats?
  • What is a biomechanical examination?
  • Where do warts come from and are they contagious?
  • What causes Athlete's foot and how can I prevent it?
  • How can I get rid of hard skin build-up on my feet?
  • Why do women suffer more foot problems than men?
  • Can ankle, knee, hip, and low-back pain be caused by bad feet
  • Is podiatry covered by health insurance?
  • I think I have my mom's feet. Is foot structure hereditary? - How to apply foot and ankle protectors?


Directions for applying Foot and Ankle and Foot to Thigh Protectors Foot and Ankle

  1. Bunch protector from elasticized opening toward the sealed end.
  2. Insert foot, spreading elastic out and over the area concern, bringing protector to the suggested level. Avoid puncturing.
  3. Place Foot and Ankle Protector at calf of leg.

Foot to Thigh

Stretching Exercises
These exercise, or a modification thereof, should be done prior to getting out of bed each morning and before getting up from rest throughout the day.

 
  1. Soup can rolling
    While sitting on the side of the bed, roll your foot back and forth over a soup can, gradually increasing pressure. Do this for several minutes on each foot. Option: Keep the can in your refrigerator. Use a sock when doing this.
  2.  
  3. Heel Cord Stretching
    a. While sitting with your legs straight out in from of you, loop a towel around the ball of your foot and hold one end of the towel with each hand. Pull back on the towel and hold this stretch for approximately 10 seconds. Relax. Repeat several times on each foot.
    b. While standing with arms against the wall and one leg behind the other, slowly lean against wall keeping heel of back leg on the ground and knee of back leg straight. Stretch will be felt in calf. Hold this stretch for approximately 10 seconds. Relax. Repeat several times on each foot.
     

How to clip your finger nails and toenail?

  1. Have clean and dry nails. Cutting wet nails can make them ragged.
  2. Cut nails straight across until they no longer extend over your finger or toe, and that they don't show any white. For fingernails, the finished nail should follow the contour of the "quick."
  3. Use a nail file to make sure the edges of the nail are smooth. Jagged nails can catch on clothes, socks, and pantyhose and potentially cause nails to tear or break.
  4. Nails should be slightly square or oval and not pointed. This will prevent them from breaking.
  5. Nails can weaken if you file too low into the corners and sides.
  6. File gently in one long stroke, from the side to the center of the nail.
  7. The ideal length that suits most hands is just over the fingertip.DO NOT CUT INTO THE QUICK.
  8. Don't bite your nails, it will create ingrown finger and toe nails.

What is the most common condition that a podiatrist treats?
Heel and arch pain are considered the most common complaints by patients who see a podiatrist. Also, toenail and skin conditions are numerous.

What is a biomechanical examination?
It is an evaluation of the alignment of the bones and joints in the lower extremity. What's the lower extremity? It is a leg? If so, say so. It is used to determine normal or abnormal joint function, joint range of motion, strength, flexibility, and to identify any areas that may be compensating for a misalignment in a different area. Additionally, it includes an evaluation of how the patient's body functions as it stands and walks.

Where do warts come from and are they contagious?
The most common location for warts is on the bottom of the foot. These are called plantar warts. A wart is a viral infection occurring though contact with the virus from a break in the skin. A person can leave the virus on a surface that gets transmitted to another person. The virus thrives outside of the body especially in wet conditions like a shower or changing room floor.

What causes Athlete's foot and how can I prevent it?
Athlete's foot is a term that refers to a fungal infection of the skin. This is another condition acquired by the skin contacting a surface where fungus or yeast is present. A contagious condition -- it can appear as irritated, red, peeling patches of skin that are itchy or burning, often with a foul odor. Good foot hygiene plus protecting feet from contact surfaces that is the best way to prevent Athlete's foot. Treatment is by prescribed medication.

How can I get rid of hard skin build-up on my feet?
Corns and calluses are nature's way of protecting the skin's surface in areas of higher pressure and friction. Pain occurs when corns or calluses grow deep into the skin causing inflammation of the skin and pressure on underlying nerves. Your podiatrist can painlessly remove excess skin using careful scalpel reduction and excising the core of the lesion. Scalpel reduction will reduce pain but in the event of an external cause such as ill-fitting shoe gear then the cause must be changed to prevent recurrence.

Why do women suffer more foot problems than men?
There is no scientific evidence to support that women have more foot problems than men. Women tend to visit their podiatrist more than men; however, more men over the age of 80 tend to seek podiatric care.

Can ankle, knee, hip, and low-back pain be caused by bad feet?
Yes. Poor foot function can lead to abnormal rotational forces on the leg bones which can cause misalignment of the complex ankle, knee, and hip joints. The opposite is also true where misalignment of the hips can cause knee, ankle, and foot pain. Accurately diagnosing the origin of these problems is essential to appropriate treatment.

Is podiatry covered by health insurance?
Most insurance plans cover podiatric care.

I think I have my mom's feet. Is foot structure hereditary?
Yes. Take a look at your parent's feet; now look at your feet. Do you see any similarities? If you do not want your feet to look like your mom's or dad's -- with bunions, contracted toes, thick toenails, flat arches -- then a consultation with a podiatrist is recommended to give you preventative measures to control your foot destiny.