Anyone who lives with chronic or persistent pain knows that it can have a major impact on our ability to enjoy a normal lifestyle. Suffering ongoing or uncontrollable pain can often also lead to feelings of isolation and helplessness, however, you are not alone. 3.37 million Australians were living with chronic pain in 2020, with almost 70% being of working age.
When it comes to our feet, our recent Healthy Feet Survey revealed that around 6% of us – or around 1.4 million Australians – wake up every morning with heel, arch or foot pain. This is very significant, as foot pain can often be prevented and is more than often easily treated with the help of an experienced podiatry team.
Ignoring painful symptoms in the feet can lead to permanent or long-standing pains not only in the feet but also in other parts of your body including legs, knees, hips and lower back. Does this sound like you?
Pain is manageable if you have a good partnership with your healthcare team, which includes your podiatrist. We encourage you to not only look after your feet, but also help your loved ones or someone you know manage their condition or pain.
Take the first steps:
- Diagnosis – has your pain been correctly diagnosed? Only with a thorough history, physical examination and the services of an experienced clinician can an accurate diagnosis be made. Don’t be afraid to ask for a second opinion about your diagnosis if you have any concerns or you’re worried that something may have been missed.
- Treatment – your treatment should be personalised to your needs and condition. Some common treatments for foot pain can include custom made foot orthotics, footwear changes, strapping, icing, stretches and shockwave treatment.
- Listen to advice: most injuries will heal if you take the time to look after yourself and follow the advice of your podiatrist.
- Management: ongoing care is needed to ensure you look after your feet and that your pain doesn’t return once it has resolved. Recurrence of injuries can be frustrating, so we recommend an annual review to ensure your foot health.
If you or someone you know suffers from foot pain, we’re here to help. Contact your local My FootDr centre and stomp out Australia’s foot problem by calling 1800 FOOTDR or book an appointment online.