Ageing and Foot Health: Exploring the Challenges and Solutions in Geriatric Podiatry

A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of foot, ankle and lower leg disorders. These include bunions, heel pain, calluses, hammertoes, ingrown toenails, neuromas, warts and infections. A podiatrist treats these problems medically and surgically and provides advice on preventive care. They are also able to treat sports injuries like fractures and sprains.

The feet are complex anatomical structures that serve as all-in-one stabilizers, shock absorbers and propulsion engines, which make them susceptible to a variety of conditions. Among the more common conditions that affect the feet are gout, osteoarthritis and nerve damage. Other problems can develop because of a person’s age, such as diabetes and peripheral vascular disease, which slow the flow of blood to the feet making it harder for cuts or blisters to heal.

Geriatric podiatry deals with the medical, surgical and non-surgical management of the elderly patient’s foot problems. It is a specialty within podiatry that is growing in popularity and need due to the aging population.

Ballarat podiatrist are able to examine and diagnose the lower extremity using state-of-the-art equipment, such as digital radiography, ultrasound, arthroscopy and MRI, if necessary. They are also able to prescribe medications, set fractures, perform surgery and use laboratory and imaging tests to assist in the diagnosis of podiatric problems.

After graduating from podiatric medical school, a podiatrist completes a 3 to 4 year hospital-based residency program where they learn the skills required to treat a full range of foot problems. They are able to make a diagnosis of the cause and recommend the appropriate treatments, which may include RICE (rest, ice application, compression and elevation), medication, splinting, steroid injections or vascular surgery.

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According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, there are approximately 15,000 podiatrists practicing in the United States. They are in demand more than ever today due to a large population of aging adults, which is causing an increase in foot and ankle disorders.

It is important for people of all ages to care for their feet to ensure their good health and independence. Keeping toenails properly trimmed, avoiding walking on uneven surfaces, not smoking, and wearing comfortable shoes all contribute to the prevention of common foot diseases. People who suffer from health conditions, such as diabetes or circulatory disease, should have their feet examined regularly by a podiatrist because of the increased risk of developing a foot problem.

It is also a good idea to visit a podiatrist if you have any foot pain as soon as possible so that the disorder can be treated early on before it becomes more serious. If you are looking for the best podiatrist in Ballarat, you can visit the website of Modern Medicine. Those with Medicare can often get podiatry treatment under their Chronic Disease Management plan. If you’re unsure whether you have coverage, contact your health insurance provider. For Australian residents, visit the Healthdirect service finder or the Australian Podiatry Association websites to locate a practitioner near you. Alternatively, you can talk to your general practitioner for more information about referring patients to a podiatrist.