Daily Archive: November 21, 2023

How Podiatrists Keep Your Feet Healthy and Happy

Foot health and hygiene is often ignored until something goes wrong. It’s important to regularly visit a podiatrist to avoid problems in the long run.

Keep feet healthy and happy by washing them daily, drying them thoroughly, and applying a moisturiser containing urea. Pumice stones and foot files can also be helpful in removing calluses.



A podiatrist is a foot specialist who has undergone 4 years of medical school training. This includes podiatric medicine and hospital residency. They specialize in foot and ankle injuries and conditions such as shin splints, bunions, and Achilles tendinitis.

Many people assume sore feet are just a normal part of life, but this is not true. Pain in the feet is your body’s signal that something is wrong. Whether the pain is caused by a hereditary condition, repetitive motions at work or during exercise, improper footwear or an injury, you should see a podiatrist for help.

Your podiatrist can diagnose the problem and develop a treatment plan to relieve your symptoms. During your first appointment, they will review your medical history and do a basic physical exam of your feet. They may also take X-rays or other imaging tests to get a closer look at your foot and ankle joints.

Podiatrists can recommend a wide variety of treatments, including custom orthotics to support painful or arthritic joints, lessen toe pressure, and prevent bunions. They can even suggest shoe inserts to prevent hammertoes and help you keep your shin splints at bay. A podiatrist can also recommend stretching exercises and strategies to prevent your pain from worsening while exercising. This way, you can continue to enjoy your favorite activities.

Shin Splints

Foot problems tend to get worse over time if they are left untreated. Regular visits to your podiatrist can prevent or catch foot problems before they become serious.

Shin splints are pain and tightness in the front of your lower leg, usually along the shin bone. This condition is common in runners and people who take up vigorous exercise after a long period of being sedentary. The muscles, tendons and bones are overworked and this leads to inflammation.

Treatment for shin splints includes RICE (rest, ice, compression and elevation) to help reduce inflammation and relieve pain. Your podiatrist may recommend a program of physiotherapy, muscle stretching/strengthening, footwear advice and Custom Foot Orthotics to address the underlying cause of the symptoms and provide relief.

Other ways to care for your feet include washing them daily with warm soapy water, drying them thoroughly and especially in between the toes. Applying a good quality moisturiser, particularly one with urea is also helpful to keep skin healthy and supple. Trimming toenails straight across and not rounding the edges helps to avoid ingrown toenails. Finally, wearing shoes that fit well and not over-pronating when you walk or run can reduce the occurrence of shin splints.

High Arch

High arches, also called pes cavus, are the result of excessive flexion in the arch that causes it to rise up above the level of the rest of the foot. People with high arches don’t have the typical flat footprint when they walk, and instead put most of their weight on their heels and the balls of their feet. This can lead to a variety of problems, including poor balance and stability, supinate gait (a tendency to roll outward as you take a step), and increased risk for ankle sprains.

It is important to see a podiatrist if you have high arches and are experiencing pain. Podiatrist Brisbane North will be able to evaluate your foot and create a treatment plan that is best for you.

In some cases, the doctor will recommend physical therapy to improve foot flexibility and strength and help with balance. In other cases, custom orthotic devices will be recommended to redistribute pressure and support the arch of the foot. The podiatrist may also suggest a heel lift in certain shoes to reduce the amount of pressure placed on the ball of the foot and heel. Often, this is the only treatment required to reduce pain caused by high arches. This will help prevent future aches and pains as well as reduce the likelihood of developing hammertoes, claw toes, and other foot conditions.


Podiatrists are also trained in wound care, including treating diabetic foot problems that can lead to serious infection. They use proper techniques for assessing and treating these wounds, as well as providing the correct treatment options to promote fast healing.

A neuroma, or a thickening of the nerve tissue in the foot, is another common problem that podiatrists treat. Often found between the toes (especially between the 3rd and 4th), a neuroma causes pain, tingling or numbness in the ball of the foot. The condition is caused by compression or irritation of the small nerves that travel through the spaces between the metatarsals, long bones behind the toes. This can be exacerbated by wearing shoes with a tight toe box, participating in sports that involve repetitive stress on the foot or having certain foot deformities like bunions, hammertoes or flat feet.

The first step to managing neuroma pain is removing pressure from the area. This can be done by changing footwear, adding foam or felt inserts in shoes, using a metatarsal dome, avoiding tight shoes or high heels, doing foot and toe stretches and mobilisation or a combination of these treatments. Once the pain has settled, your podiatrist may then suggest sclerosing injections or laser therapy to shrink the neuroma. If conservative treatments don’t help, surgery may be required.

From Bunion Pain to Foot Freedom – Exploring Bunion Correction Options

Bunions can be severely painful, limiting activity and impacting self-esteem. Surgery is often the best solution for pain and to allow individuals to return to normal activities quickly.

Bunion surgery repositions the bones of your foot and corrects abnormal bone rotation, which is one of the main causes of bunion formation. To learn more about your bunion correction options, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Cowans!

Non-Surgical Options

If bunions are caught at an early stage, they may respond to nonsurgical treatment. But, as the bumps become more rigid and inflexible, these forms of care often prove less effective.

Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can help reduce pain and swelling in the big toe joint. Orthotic shoe inserts, splints or protective pads are also good options that can help to keep the bunion from becoming more painful as it grows.

While it’s unclear what causes bunions to form, there are some contributing lifestyle factors that may increase your risk of developing them. These include being born with foot problems, having abnormal foot mechanics, or suffering from a foot injury or rheumatoid arthritis. It’s also believed that wearing tight-fitting shoes that put pressure on the toe box is a major cause of bunions.

If you suffer from a painful bunion, it’s important to find the best treatment for your needs. Talk with bunion clinic in Adelaide about your options today. We can provide a thorough exam, weight-bearing x-rays and other diagnostic tests to see if you’re a candidate for minimally invasive bunion surgery. Call us or request an appointment online to get started.


Changing your footwear to shoes that fit and don’t place pressure on the big toe can significantly reduce bunion pain. Shoes that are open-toed or wide around the toes provide more space, as do shoe inserts called orthotics. Your podiatrist may recommend these over-the-counter or custom-made orthotic shoe inserts, which help to control movement and support the foot to shift pressure away from the 1st metatarsal pad (ball of the big toe) and lessen the severity of bunions.

Your doctor may also recommend wearing a bunion correction Adelaide, which is a splint that straightens the big toe while you wear it. This can relieve pain but does not remove the bump. Ice packs can numb the area and reduce pain, as can nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (such as aspirin or ibuprofen). Whirlpool, ultrasound, and massage therapy can ease discomfort as well.

In severe cases, or if nonsurgical treatments haven’t provided relief, your doctor may recommend surgery to remove the bunion and realign the toe. The procedure is called bunionectomy, and it involves cutting, removing, or altering portions of the bone, ligaments, and tendons to relieve pressure on the big toe joint. Your doctor may use local anesthesia, a regional anesthesia (a popliteal block), or general anesthesia. An anesthesiologist will stay with you throughout the surgery to administer additional medications, if needed, and ensure that you are comfortable.

Physical Therapy

Bunion pain often starts at the critical metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint, where the big toe joins the rest of the foot. This joint helps us bear and distribute weight and allows our feet to move in many different ways. When a bunion develops, the MTP joint shifts to accommodate it and becomes misshapen. This shift causes the big toe to point more toward other toes, and it puts stress on the joints and tissues around the toe. Over time, this imbalanced load can cause the MTP joint to swell and make it painful and difficult to walk.

If you try wide shoes, toe spacers, splints, and other treatments and still have pain, your doctor may recommend a surgical correction procedure. During surgery, your doctor cuts the bones in the area of the bunion to realign the joint and reduce the bump. He or she may also insert pins or screws to keep the bones straight, and he or she might shave off or remove excess bone tissue.

Following the procedure, you’ll need to remain non-weight bearing for a period of weeks to allow the bones to heal. Your doctor will probably apply a dressing and/or a cast to maintain the correct bone position, and you might use crutches or a knee-walker. Once the bones have healed, your doctor will let you start walking again in a pair of soft leather oxford shoes that best protect the new joint.


The bunion is a painful condition caused by instability in the big toe joint. As the big toe shifts out of alignment, it causes pain from uneven weight-bearing and friction from footwear. This imbalanced pressure can also lead to an inflamed bursa (fluid-filled sac located around a joint) that causes more pain and swelling.

Bunion surgery is an option to reduce pain and correct the deformity of your big toe. Your foot and ankle surgeon will examine your feet and decide on the right surgical procedure for you.

There are several types of bunion surgery. The simplest is an osteotomy, which involves surgically cutting and realigning your big toe bone. This is performed in a hospital setting and may require you to stay off your foot for many weeks.

Another type of surgery is called a lapidoplasty, which involves placing a plate on the front part of your foot to hold the bones in place. This is a less invasive surgery than an osteotomy, but it may not correct the shape of your foot.

Medications can help minimize pain and swelling. Your doctor may prescribe over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, or recommend cortisone injections to treat the inflamed bursa. Pads to protect the area and separate your toes from rubbing can also reduce pain. You may also benefit from specialized shoe inserts, such as orthotics, that are specially made for your foot or custom-made by your podiatric surgeon.