Your feet are a hugely important part of your body but it’s easy to forget to look after them. We asked orthopaedic surgeon Mr Harvinder Bedi for his tips on caring for your hard-working feet.
Match your footwear to your activity
When you’re playing sport or training, it’s vital to take care of your feet and that means buying the right shoes. Mr Bedi says: “Your footwear needs to be appropriate for the activities that you’re doing. For example, running long distances needs more cushioning, but basketball needs ankle support from your shoe or from supplementary taping.”
And a reminder from Mr Bedi: “Make sure you check on your footwear regularly to make sure they’re not wearing out.”
Don’t buy expensive orthotics for kids… unless they’re really required
When you’re a parent, looking after your children’s feet also falls to you. Mr Bedi cautions against the ‘common vogue’ to put kids in orthotics if they have flat feet: “If the problem is symmetrical and painless, there’s little indication for orthotics. If a child runs normally, plays normally, and does everything else normally, then the likelihood of any serious problem is very small.”
So, before you commit to a potentially costly treatment, take the time to find out if this is really necessary for your child.
Limit your time in high heels
While Mr Bedi jokes that fashionable footwear keeps him in business, there’s a serious note here as he says, “What people have to remember is that some footwear is not natural, it’s not what your feet are made for. They’re not made to be in tight shoes or with the load on the front of the foot.”
This isn’t to say that high heels are a complete no-go, rather that it’s important to be aware that they can place a lot of stress on your feet. So remember, “Heels every day will have consequences- wear them in moderation.”
Address any issues early
To prevent problems simply take the time to look at your feet, “If they don’t look red, swollen, or inflamed, there’s not likely to be a major issue.”
It’s especially important for diabetic patients to treat small issues before they have the chance to turn into bigger issues. Mr Bedi recommends regular moisturisation to help prevent cracking, which can lead to infection. And remember, “If you have any numbness in your feet, or any issues with skin breakdown, head to your doctor or your podiatrist”.
Mr Harvinder Bedi is an internationally trained orthopaedic surgeon who specialises in foot and ankle surgery including the correction of bunions and reconstructive surgery for arthritis or following trauma. Speak to your GP for more information and a referral.
Mr Harvinder Bedi is located at 89 Bridge Road, Richmond. To make an appointment, call (03) 9038 5200.