Podiatrists are trained professionals who focus on the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of abnormal conditions in the feet and lower limbs. They can also help to alleviate pain, treat infections, correct and prevent deformity, and offer advice and treatment to keep you active (such as what types of shoes to wear and how to look after your feet). They also help you to tackle day-to-day foot problems, such as verrucas, blisters or bunions.
If you are experiencing painful feet, cracks or cuts in the skin, growths such as warts, thickening or discolouring of the toenails, scaling or peeling on the soles, or any other foot-related problem, you should consider seeing a podiatrist for treatment and advice. If you are experiencing pain in your heel or the arch of your foot, a podiatrist may offer you orthotics; insoles, padding and arch support tailored to your foot to help treat any problems. The orthotic device will fit into your shoe and should divert pain away from vulnerable areas whilst also making your shoes more comfortable. A podiatrist might be appropriate to you even if your feet are in a good overall condition. It might be that a professional view may encourage you to change the type of shoes you are wearing or may simply result in advice on how to look after your feet properly. A podiatrist can also assist in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of foot problems relating to sport and exercise.