Being referred to a podiatrist can be exciting, as it can be the first step towards getting your foot problem treated. However, there are a few things you can do to make the most of your appointment, from preparing your feet to bringing a notebook with you.
Get Your Feet Ready to Be Examined
Your podiatrist has probably seen thousands of feet and doesn't care if yours look attractive. However, there are a few steps that you can take to make the appointment easier for both of you. First, wash and dry your feet. The NHS explains the best way to do this, washing your feet in soapy water (but not soaking them) and taking care to dry them carefully, especially between the toes. You should then make sure that you wear socks that are easy to remove, rather than tights or long socks. Don't wear tight jeans that can't be rolled up, as the podiatrist will want to see your whole foot. Additionally, don't wear nail varnish, as this can hide your nails, meaning the podiatrist may miss something important. For the same reason, you might also want to avoid fake tan or anything else that hides the colour of your foot.
Make Notes on What to Say
Your appointment with your podiatrist is your chance to explain your foot pain or problem, so it's important not to forget anything. Firstly, explain any treatment you have already had, the medications you are on, or diagnoses you have been given. You should also describe the problem in detail. Describing pain can be difficult, so the US Department of Health has provided some words you may use. For example, is the pain throbbing, shooting or hot? What time of day does it happen? Does movement make it better or worse? You should also tell your podiatrist if you have been doing intense exercise, if you are pregnant or intend to be or if there is anything else going on with your health. The more they know, the better your treatment will be.
Prepare Some Questions to Ask
In addition to giving your podiatrist as much information as possible, you might also want to ask them things. The questions you ask depend on your condition—for example, if you have diabetes, you may want to ask about the treatment you can do at home, and about how serious your condition is, as explained by Diabetes UK. If you have another type of foot issue, you might ask what you can do in terms of exercise to help, whether there are any lotions or over-the-counter medications that help, and what to look out for. If you've started new foot medication or treatment, make sure you fully understand how it works. If there's anything you really need to know, try taking a notebook and writing down the answers.
If you plan in advance what you want from your appointment and prepare a list of anything you want to find out, you will ensure that your appointment is as successful and productive as possible.