The physical and mental health benefits of paying attention to your feet

The physical and mental health benefits of paying attention to your feet

The biggest mistake people make with their feet is to ignore them.

The feet are the absolute most important part of the body. They can affect you adversely if they're not taken care of, or you are unaware of what's happening with your feet.

Sadly, many of my patients' foot issues develop due to neglected feet. So, I am passionate about bringing awareness to this matter. For me, it's all about body awareness and how it changes our actions and influences our beliefs.

The most important asset you own and are responsible for in complete total, 100% control of, is your body. So it amazes me that time and time again, the world that we're living in is all very materialistic. It's all about the big house, the big car, etc. It's all about the day-to-day luxuries. And I'm all for that or against it. However, some of that investment must go into our bodies and well-being.

When we don't connect with our bodies, things can go wrong very quickly. This is exactly what happens with our feet.

When was the last time you connected with them? When was the last time you registered they were cold, and you needed warmer shoes, warmer socks, a bit of cream, a little foot spray, and your nails needed hydrating? Or are you one of these people who wait until the toenails get too long, hurt and then trim them?

How much foot awareness do you have? I want to inspire you to look at your feet and connect with them. What do they actually need right now?

Why adopt prevention over cure philosophy

As a healthcare professional, I want to help people prevent foot and ankle leg problems. The way I was trained was all about fixing it, fixing it, fixing it, fixing it. However, my view is that we need a bit more of a European ethos towards our health in the UK.

Healthcare professionals must focus on making their clients aware of the benefits of prevention. They should encourage them to become more aware of their overall well-being — how their physical body and mental attitude affect their health. Moreover, they should advocate the importance of regular health checks.

Many people visit Doctor Google to learn about a concern and then give themselves a diagnosis. The 'self-diagnosis' is a real common problem I see all the time. So you think you've got A and start treating A, and then you realise it's not working; quite the opposite, it's exacerbating the problem. What's more, you've got side effects from the treatments you've tried or the home remedies.

You can easily go down a rabbit hole, and some nasty things can come up with Google. For instance, if you Google black toenails, there are many differential diagnoses, some of which are not nice.

In this article, I want to raise awareness of the power of the diagnosis. Check your feet daily, and if something doesn't feel right or you see a change of colour in your toenails, there is a pain in your ankles, or a sting in the soles, go and get it checked by a podiatrist.

That initial diagnosis will stop you from worrying and treat the problem before it worsens. You'll learn what's causing it so you can prevent it from happening and what the treatment will be. As a result, you'll get quicker, faster, and more desirable results by engaging the right person.

A proper diagnosis will ease the stress and anxiety caused by assuming you suffer from X, Y or Z.

In addition, seeing a podiatrist will help you overcome the low self-esteem issues that can arise from foot and ankle problems. They can educate you on common foot problems and the treatments available so you can decide on the best-suited options.

My feet are in my shoes. Let's forget about and ignore them.

That's the mentality we need to end. So, next time your feet don't feel right, don't suffer in silence. Visit a podiatrist.

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