Did you know that most Australians log an incredible 120,000 kilometres on their feet by the time they reach age 50?
For many of us, our feet are something we take for granted. Most of us will have a foot problem at some point in life but until then our feet are often neglected. We expect they’ll be uncomfortable at times, and we put up with it when they hurt. But healthy feet are fundamental to the quality of our lives. They are wondrously engineered and often the indicators of our overall health, so we need to look after them.
Obviously the foot plays a crucial part in the process of walking, and often suffers as a result of poor function. This inefficient function can result in foot conditions such as corns and calluses, painful toenails, pain in the ball of the foot, the arch, the ankle, or in the heel.
Less obvious, but very important, is the fact that inefficient foot function has an influence on other parts of the body. A small structural or functional imbalance in the foot may often cause no foot pain at all. It may however have an effect that may cause problems in the ankles, knees, hips and back; essentially, all parts of the body that are connected to the feet by the skeleton. This may show itself as pain, instability, restricted movement, or in some cases just fatigue.
Podiatrists can also often detect serious health problems that may otherwise go unnoticed, because a number of diseases manifest first through symptoms of the lower extremities (i.e. diabetes, arthritis, neurological disorders, heart disease, kidney disease and liver disease).
Regular foot care can make sure your feet stay healthy. With proper detection, intervention, and care, most foot and ankle problems can be lessened or prevented.