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Chiropody

Chiropody, also known as podiatry, focuses on the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of foot and lower limb conditions. Seniors may experience various chiropody problems due to factors such as age-related changes, chronic health conditions, decreased mobility, and reduced sensation.

All About Chiropody from the Chelsea Clinic

Foot Health in our Advancing Years

As we age, our feet need extra care and attention to maintain overall health.  Healthy feet help us to stay as mobile, balanced and independent as possible.  Over time our feet flatten and become wider.  The fatty padding naturally wears down making the bones and joints of the feet more exposed to wear and tear.  This can leading us to experience discomfort in our feet making walking somewhat demanding.

An injury as minor as a bad blister can affect a person's mobility, balance and overall functionality.  Our skin can break down more easily -taking longer to heal.  Sprains, neuropathy (*damage to our foot nerves), ingrown toenails, and traumas like osteoporotic fractures could be just a host of foot and ankle issues - the first of many dominos to fall in a series of illnesses that could significantly harm the health and well-being of us as we advance through our years of life.  Serious health conditions also affect our feet.  Obesity, arthritis, circulatory issues, diabetes and metabolic disorders are several such examples.

Foot pain can result in issues which affect our walking and exercising and in turn form a crucial part of health and well-being for us as seniors.  Additionally poor eyesight and reduced spinal and hip mobility can also make it harder for us to look after our feet.  As our toenails start to thicken a condition known as onychauxis the grip strength required to use our nail cutters also becomes more difficult and is sometimes just not possible to cut our toenails.

When to Get Extra Help for Senior Feet?

A senior’s feet may show signs and symptoms that suggest more serious foot issues.  We should contact a podiatrist if any of the following are present:

  • Blisters

  • Ingrown toenails

  • Sores or wounds

  • Brittle or discoloured toenails

  • Cracked skin

  • Tingling or burning in the feet

  • Pain in the feet or ankles

  • Cold, numb, or discoloured feet

  • Unusual odours

 

Having any of these symptoms should alert us.  Attending to see your podiatrist in order to address any foot or ankle issues as soon as possible is prudent.  Waiting is not a sensible option in order to stop an issue before it becomes severe is key 🔑.

How to take care of our feet?

Here are some tips for keeping your feet healthy as a senior:

  1. Check your feet regularly.  Inspect your feet daily or weekly for any cuts, blisters, or sores.  These issues can rapidly escalate, especially for those with diabetes or circulation problems.  If you observe anything unusual, see a podiatrist - if this is difficult perhaps your family, friend or carer can take a photo of your feet to show you.

  2. Wear proper footwear.  Use shoes that fit well and provide enough support.  Avoid high heels and shoes with a narrow toe box that can cause foot pain and deformities.  Opt for shoes with a low heel and a wide toe box, which will give more room for your toes.

  3. Keep your feet clean and dry.  Wash your feet daily with warm water and mild soap and make sure to dry them thoroughly, especially between your toes.  Moisture can lead to fungal infections, so it's important to keep your feet dry.

  4. Trim your toenails.  Cut your toenails straight across and avoid cutting them too short to avoid getting ingrown toenails as these can be painful and lead to infections.

  5. Exercise your feet.  Regular exercise can enhance circulation and avert foot pain.  Simple exercises like ankle rotations, toe curls, and foot stretches can help keep your feet strong and healthy.

  6. Elevate your feet.  Elevate your feet if you experience swelling to improve circulation.  Prop your feet up on a pillow while sitting or lying down.

  7. Consult a podiatrist.  Regular check ups to a podiatrist can help avoid and treat foot problems.  Your podiatrist can also suggest proper footwear, give foot care advice, and treat any existing foot illnesses.

 

Proper foot care is something many of us forget to consider.  As we get older, an annual foot health check is as important as a sight or hearing test.  The Chelsea Clinic can provide annual foot check-ups in order to identify any foot problems and treat them before it worsens. 

 

For appointments you can call: 0207 101 4000 or visit us here at: https://www.thechelseaclinic.uk/book-online/

Member with the Forum?  Receive 15% off of your podiatry consultation and treatment.

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