The Role of Podiatrists in Foot Care

A healthy pair of feet is the foundation of an active and healthy lifestyle. They allow you to walk, run, and participate in your favourite activities. However, foot problems severely limit mobility and negatively impact your overall well-being. This is where podiatrists come in.

Whether on your feet all day or dealing with a specific condition, a podiatrist’s support and care can be crucial to maintaining your overall health.

In this article, we will explore the essential role of podiatrists in foot care and the treatments and services they offer. Understanding the value of podiatrist care can help you live a more comfortable and active life, whether you want to know about foot care as a senior citizen, an athlete, or a person with chronic foot pain.

What Is a Podiatrist?Podiatrists treat a variety of foot problems


A podiatrist is a licensed foot care specialist who diagnoses and treats foot and ankle problems. They treat a wide range of conditions, from minor foot issues to more serious problems such as infections, fractures, and deformities. They can also diagnose underlying health issues causing foot problems and advise patients on techniques to incorporate into their foot care routine to avoid complications.

When to Consult a Podiatrist

There is a misconception among many people that foot pain and conditions will go away by themselves. To avoid exacerbating the problem, knowing when to consult a podiatrist specializing in quality foot care is critical. Here are some signs to see a podiatrist:

  • Painful foot conditions that don’t go awayIf you experience persistent foot pain even after taking painkillers or resting your feet, this could indicate a severe foot condition that requires prompt attention.
  • Corns and callusesCorns and calluses can be painful and unsightly. Over-the-counter remedies are often ineffective and may damage your feet.
  • Ingrown toenailsIngrown toenails can be a painful condition where the nail grows into the surrounding skin.
  • Diabetic foot problemsPeople with diabetes are at a higher risk of foot problems, which can be potentially dangerous. To prevent complications, a podiatrist should check your feet regularly if you have diabetes.
  • Sports injuriesA podiatrist can help you recover from injuries and provide preventative advice if you are an athlete or participate in any physical activity that involves your feet.

Types of Treatments Offered

Podiatrists offer a range of treatments to help you manage and improve the health of your feet, ranging from non-invasive physical therapy to more advanced surgical procedures. Podiatrists provide the following types of treatments:

    • Foot physical therapy

Foot physical therapy is a non-invasive treatment that involves exercises, stretches, and other techniques to improve foot function and reduce pain.

Physical therapy exercises can strengthen the muscles and improve flexibility in the foot and ankle. They can also reduce inflammation and pain. A podiatrist may work with you to develop a customized physical therapy plan based on your specific condition and needs.

    • Surgical procedures

Podiatrists are trained to perform advanced foot care treatments, like surgical procedures. These procedures may include bunion surgery, hammertoe surgery, and plantar fascia release surgery.

    • Cutting into the subcutaneous tissue

Subcutaneous tissue cutting is a treatment used to relieve pressure and pain caused by certain foot conditions, such as neuromas and ganglion cysts. During the procedure, a podiatrist will make a small incision in the skin and remove the affected tissue with a scalpel.

This treatment can effectively relieve pain and keep the condition from worsening. It is usually performed under local anesthesia; patients can resume normal activities within a few days.

    • Foot injections of designated substances/drugs

Podiatrists can inject designated substances or drugs directly into the foot to treat certain conditions, such as plantar fasciitis and arthritis. The injections may contain corticosteroids, anti-inflammatory drugs, or hyaluronic acid, which can lubricate the joints and reduce friction. However, patients may require several injections for weeks to achieve the desired effect.

    • Prescribing designated drugs

Podiatrists can prescribe certain medications to manage foot conditions, such as fungal infections and neuropathic pain. These drugs may include antifungal medications, pain relievers, and anti-inflammatory drugs.

Prescription drugs can be an effective treatment option for certain foot conditions. However, you must follow the podiatrist’s instructions and report any side effects.

    • Shockwave therapy

Shockwave therapy aims to stimulate foot healing through high-energy sound waves. A podiatrist will use a handheld device to deliver shockwaves to the affected area during the treatment. The shockwaves stimulate blood flow and increase cell metabolism, promoting healing and reducing pain.

Services Provided

A podiatrist can also provide sports injury treatment

In addition to treating foot conditions, podiatrists offer various services for effective foot care.

    • Foot assessments

Foot assessments help identify potential problems before they become serious. A podiatrist will examine the feet for any signs of damage, deformity, or disease during a foot assessment.

They may also evaluate your gait and posture, as these can affect foot health. Based on the assessment, the podiatrist can develop a customized treatment plan to address any issues and improve foot health.

    • Nail care

Poorly maintained nails can lead to infections and other issues. Podiatrists can provide a range of nail care services, such as cutting and shaping nails, treating ingrown toenails, and removing corns and calluses.

They may also advise you on which foot care kit is best for you and how to properly care for your nails at home to avoid future problems.

    • Orthotics

Orthotics are custom-made shoe inserts designed to alleviate foot pain and improve foot function. Podiatrists can assess your foot and gait to determine if orthotics are needed. They can also create custom orthotics to address specific foot conditions and needs.

    • Wound care

Podiatrists also provide essential wound care, particularly for patients with diabetes or other conditions that affect foot health. They can also offer guidance on how to properly care for your wounds at home to prevent infection and promote healing.

    • Sports injury treatment

Podiatrists can treat sports-related foot injuries, such as ankle sprains and stress fractures. They can assess the extent of the injury and develop a treatment plan to promote healing and reduce pain.

Podiatrists play an essential role in foot care, providing a range of treatments and services to help you maintain healthy feet. If you have foot pain, are concerned about your foot health, or are interested in custom orthotics, consult a podiatrist for expert care and treatment. Your feet are essential to your body, and proper care and attention can ensure they remain healthy and pain-free for years.

Are you seeking a trusted foot clinic in Owen Sound that caters to your custom footwear needs? Look no further than Advanced Orthotics and Bracing. We cater to clients experiencing moderate to severe orthopedic problems by providing reliable foot care in Owen Sound via custom orthotics. Please schedule an appointment with us today at 705-445-0680.