Image by Freepik. 3 reasons why you should get a foot health check this winter

3 reasons why you should get a foot health check this winter

Our feet aren’t something we tend to give much thought to on a day to day basis, that is, until we find ourselves with problems or dealing with pain – then we struggle to stop thinking about it as it disrupts our daily life. A foot health check is a perfect way to keep your feet healthy and happy this winter and beyond. But why are maintenance appointments worth their while, even if your feet feel fine?

In today’s post, we’ll be sharing 3 reasons why you should get a foot health check this winter. 

1. Get a regular foot health check to spot any issues early on

Your podiatrist will easily be able to spot any issues with your feet, most likely long before you even notice yourself. From verrucas and corns, to ingrown toenails and even issues with your bones – podiatrists are highly trained to identify those tiny telltale signs. We always get told that prevention is better than the cure, and that’s certainly no different when it comes to getting a regular foot health check, either.

2. Get a regular foot health check to ensure your nails and toes remain healthy

One of the biggest issues that patients come to our clinic with is ingrown toenails. They can be extremely painful, but, they’re so easy to prevent. Some ingrown toenails can happen as the result of ill-fitting footwear, but the majority of cases we see personally have been caused due to a bad technique when cutting the nails. Visiting your chiropodist regularly ensures that your toenails (and toes) can maintain their health and properly cut and cared for. Plus, you don’t have to struggle to reach if you have mobility problems.

3. Get a regular foot health check to maintain your foot health whilst having a little self-care

A lot of the time, we think of self-care as extravagant gestures to ourself, like luxurious spa days or treating ourself to a bubble bath and a glass of wine. But self-care also includes the little acts of care you take to ensure your body is well looked after. Just as we go for regular reviews with our GP or check ups with our dentist, we should also view out foot health checks in the same way. They’re vital to ensure that our feet remain as healthy as possible. After all, we rely on our feet a lot, so it’s important to take good care of them.

Did you know?

We offer gift vouchers! View our list of services here and pick the perfect option. Don’t see what you’re looking for? Please get in touch and we’ll be more than happy to help you.

How do I purchase a voucher?

Buying your voucher is really easy – simply call our clinic on 01226 759 660 where Alex will be happy to assist you. Alternatively, please email us at info@carmenhancockchiropody and let us know your requirements.

Feature image by Freepik

Keep your feet cosy this winter

Keep your feet cosy this winter

Ready to keep your feet cosy this winter?

We know, the year is flying by, isn’t it? Winter is officially on the way and the dark nights are drawing in. And although we’re looking forward to those cosy, warm evenings at home with a hot chocolate and a good book, it’s important to remember to keep a check on our feet through the chilly season. After all, the colder weather along with those chunky socks and winter boots can contribute to conditions like chilblains and fungal infections.

Layer up on socks

Keep your feet cosy this winter with layering! Building layers helps to retain more heat than adding just one pair of chunky socks, so, try two pairs of thinner socks the next time your feet are feeling the cold.

Alternate your footwear

In the winter months, we sometimes get attached to the same old pair of boots that fit like a dream and keep us cosy all day. But it’s important to allow your footwear to air properly after a day of wear. Moist environments are the perfect space for bacterial and fungal infections – so by alternating your footwear (and making sure to wear clean, dry socks every day) you’re decreasing the risk.

Wear cushioned shoes

Wearing cushioned, comfortable shoes is a must all year around. Make sure your shoes offer good arch support and that they fit correctly. If in doubt, get professionally measured to ensure a great fit.

Stay hydrated and well-moisturised

Dry skin can become sore and cracked, which is why it’s especially important to stay hydrated and well moisturised. Hydrate from the inside out by drinking plenty of water, and make sure to use a nourishing body moisturiser to keep skin supple, soft and healthy.

Take a maintenance check

Having a regular maintenance appointment with your local podiatrist is a great way to keep your feet looking and feeling their best. From toenail cutting to spotting any issues, your local podiatrist will keep your foot health on track. 

Ready to book an appointment or ask for some advice? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here

What are chilblains and how to treat them?

What are chilblains and how to treat them?

As the colder months are beginning to settle in, we’re beginning to see more patients with chilblains once again. But what exactly are they, and how do you treat them? 

What are chilblains?

Chilblains are small lesions on the skin that are caused when tiny blood cells become inflamed after exposure to cold air. They can feel very painful, and tend to be found on the tips of your fingers and toes.

What are the symptoms?

  • Dry skin that splits and cracks easily
  • Pain and burning sensations on the skin
  • Red, white or blue patchy areas of skin
  • Intense itching
  • Swelling around the affected area

In severe cases, secondary infections can occur and lead to ulceration which needs professional medical attention from your podiatrist.

What causes chilblains?

Chilblains are thought to be caused be a combination of poor circulation, and cold weather. If you’re exposed to cold air more often, you’re more likely to suffer with chilblains.

How do I treat chilblains?

There are a few measures you can take to help you prevent and treat chilblains.

Keep your body warm
Keeping your whole body warm is important in the treatment and prevention of chilblains. Although warming the area too fast can cause more damage, gently warming your whole body is the best option.

Try woolly socks
Woolly socks help to insulate, which means they’ll trap the heat and keep your feet feeling warm and cosy.

Don’t scratch the area
We completely understand how hard it is to not scratch an itch, but resist the urge as best you can to avoid causing further damage. 

Use lanolin 
Gently rubbing lanolin into the feet will help you to retain body heat.

Take gentle exercise
Gentle exercise is great as it increases the circulation to the feet and the body. Try a gentle stroll, or simply regularly moving your feet and legs if you’re not able to move around freely.

When to see your podiatrist

If you’re struggling with pain, or your chilblains have ulcerated, it’s important to see your podiatrist as soon as possible. We can help you to feel much more comfortable again and have you on the route to recovery. 

Ready to book an appointment or ask for some advice? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here

Taking care of baby's feet

Taking care of baby’s feet

Taking care of baby’s feet can feel like a daunting task. After all, our babies can’t tell us if they’re feeling pain or discomfort with their feet at such a young age. So what can you do to ensure baby’s feet are healthy, happy and well cared for?

Check baby’s feet for any signs of trauma

Once your baby begins to move around on their own, there is more potential for them to cause injury to their feet. From stepping on a toy by accident, (parents, you’ll know how painful this is if you’ve ever stepped on lego!) to a seemingly simple trip, there are many things that can cause injury or discomfort. Keeping a check on baby’s feet regularly will help you to spot any signs of injury. If in doubt, see your local podiatrist who will be able to give you advice. 

Taking care of baby's feet

Let baby go barefoot (or in socks)

Baby’s feet are rapidly developing as they continue to grow. During these stages, it’s important that their feet aren’t restricted on the movement and space they need to develop. Allowing baby to go barefoot until they’re ready to walk around outside will also help to improve their range of motion. 

Wash and dry baby’s feet thoroughly

Moist feet are a welcome environment for bacterial infections and cracked skin. So washing and drying baby’s feet properly is really important to ensure they stay happy and healthy. 

Keep baby’s toenails trimmed

Sharp, overgrown toenails can damage the delicate skin around baby’s nails. Trimming their toenails regularly will ensure this doesn’t happen. However, there is a ‘right way’ to cut toenails. Ensure you cut them straight across (don’t follow the natural curve of the nail as this can cause ingrown toenails), and don’t cut them too short.

Measure baby’s feet regularly

Baby’s feet are rapidly growing at this age. So once they’re ready for shoes, it’s important to regularly check on their measurements. 

Remember, if in doubt, call your local podiatrist who will be able to advise you on taking care of baby’s feet.

Ready to book an appointment or ask for some advice? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here

Keeping your feet healthy during pregnancy

Keeping your feet healthy during pregnancy

Keeping your feet healthy during pregnancy can be a breeze – in today’s post, we’ll tell you how. 

Expecting a baby anytime soon? If so, congratulations! Pregnancy is a weird and wonderful journey. Your body is going through many changes, and everybody has their own unique experience throughout. But one thing that most people have in common at some point during pregnancy is this: aches and pains in their feet. 

Is foot pain normal when you’re pregnant?

In short, yes. The sudden weight gain can increase pressure on your ligaments around your feet and ankles, which can then lead to pain in the arches of your feet. Other common spots for aches and pains are your calves which can suffer with cramps, your lower back and pelvis.

During pregnancy, your ligaments become much more flexible to help your body prepare for birth. Because of this, you will sometimes feel increased discomfort.

Keeping your feet healthy during pregnancy

Treat yourself to a relaxing pedicure

Is there anything nicer than a relaxing pedicure and a soothing foot massage? Whether you ask your partner to treat you to an at-home spa experience (after all, it’s hard to reach your own feet when you’re pregnant), or visit us in the clinic, we’ll have you feeling like you’re walking on air in no time. 

Check your feet for corns or calluses, and treat them accordingly

The extra weight that comes along with pregnancy naturally causes more pressure on your feet. This in turn can lead to calluses and corns which you might not normally suffer with. Keeping your feet healthy during pregnancy by checking them regularly will help you to spot any niggles that might be causing you discomfort. Spotted a callus or corn? Although using foot files and a nourishing moisturiser can be helpful, we recommend having them removed professionally for comfort and relief. 

Wear comfortable footwear

Supportive, cushioned footwear is a must – especially during pregnancy. If you’re struggling with swollen feet and need to wear open shoes, make sure to find a good pair with arch support. If in doubt, ask your podiatrist for their recommendations on comfy, supportive shoes to wear during pegnancy.

Keep up with maintenance podiatry appointments 

Having a regular maintenance appointment is a great way to keep your feet happy and healthy. Seeing a professional podiatrist as part of your routine means that you’ll be able to keep on top of any issues (like corns or ingrown toenails), and feel as comfortable as possible. 

Ready to book an appointment or ask for some advice? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here

Give your feet a little TLC this autumn with our Prende Pedicure

Give your feet a little TLC this autumn with our Prende Pedicure

We can hardly believe that we’ve hit the season of autumn once again! The time for pumpkin spice, cosy evenings at home, and of course, long walks through the crunchy golden leaves. It’s also the time where we start  bundling our feet into those cosy socks and chunky boots to keep them toasty for the cooler weather. So, to keep your feet feeling happy and in top shape this season, why not treat your feet to a little TLC with our Prende Pedicure? The ultimate smoothing and soothing treatment.

What is Prende Pedicure Warm Wax Therapy?

The Prende Pedicure is a therapeutic treatment to smooth the feet and relieve those bothersome aches and pains.

The comforting warm wax therapy increases your blood-flow and tolerance for pain. Additionally, it relaxes your muscles and increases hydration to your skin, whilst providing a therapeutic and healing effect for those sore and aching joints.

Who can have Prende Pedicure Warm Wax Therapy?

It’s a soothing, relaxing treatment for anybody. But it’s particularly beneficial for patients suffering from arthritis and rheumatic pain. The soothing heat helps skin to feel amazing and look healthier, too. So whether you’re booking for yourself or treating a loved one, we know you’ll love the experience and the results. 

How much does it cost?

Treatments start from £30, or £25 if taken in conjunction with a chiropody treatment

Book your Prende Pedicure Wax Therapy appointment today
Give us a call on 01226 759 660 or contact us here to book your appointment.

Foot care tips for runners this summer

Foot care tips for runners

Avid runner or just starting out? Our foot care tips for runners will help you to keep your feel healthy and happy this summer, no matter how many miles you clock up!

Choose the right footwear

One of the biggest foot care tips for runners is to choose the right footwear. As obvious as it sounds, many people end up choosing footwear that doesn’t offer the support needed. There are many types of trainers for running: from trainers designed for seasoned long-distance runners, to trainers for different terrains. Make sure you choose a pair that are designed for your needs, and that give support to your foot, along with adequate cushioning. 

Wear the correct socks

Most people think 100% cotton socks are a great option. But they actually retain moisture and don’t provide any insulation. Choose a pair of specialist socks for running (available at most good sports stores) which are breathable and cushioned for comfort and support. Don’t forget to clean and dry your feet after your run, and always wear fresh, clean socks. 

Keep your toenails short

Avoid injuries and infections from the rubbing of long nails. Just ensure you cut your toenails properly using our handy guide here, to ensure you avoid ingrown toenails. 

Massage and moisturise daily

Soothe away any aches with a daily massage with your favourite moisturiser. Keeping your skin soft and supple helps to keep it at its healthiest. Struggling with foot pain after running? Speak to your podiatrist who will able to help diagnose and recommend a treatment for you to relieve any pain.

Treat your blisters gently

The most tempting thing to do is to pop those blisters, isn’t it? But by doing so, you’re prolonging the healing process, and leaving yourself open to infections. Instead, gently cleanse your blisters before adding a little Savlon. If your blisters are bothering you, add a clean, dry dressing to protect the area and relieve any pain.

Now you’re armed with our top tips, it’s time to go enjoy your run!

Need some more advice?
Give us a call today on 01226 759 660 or contact us here to book your appointment.

Do high heels cause foot problems?

Do high heels cause foot problems?

Do high heels cause foot problems? is another question that we’re commonly asked in our clinic. And whilst our answer might not surprise you, we think it’s important to help our patients understand how they can make better choices in their footwear, thus preventing foot problems in the future.

Most podiatrists advise patients against wearing high heels, but of course, we know that heels are always going to be a popular choice. Not only do they look fabulous for evenings out, but they can also make us feel much more confident, and walk taller (quite literally).

First of all let’s answer the question: do high heels cause foot problems? 

There are foot problems associated with the wearing of high heels. From: ankle sprains, calluses, corns, and bunions, to hammertoes, and even ingrown toenails. These conditions can all be caused directly by, or worsened, by the wearing of high heels.  

So, how can you wear those fabulous heels but take care of your feet, too? Let’s discuss a few tips to help you choose the best fit.

Consider heel size

Heel size plays a huge part on how your weight is distributed. Thicker heels will always be a better option than a stiletto heel, for example. This covers more surface area, distributing the weight more evenly across the feet. 

Do high heels cause foot problems?

Choose the correct shoe size

Many people tend to choose heels that are too small for their feet. This is a huge no-no when it comes to selecting heels that are more comfortable and safer for your feet. Having your feet properly measured is the best way to ensure a good fit. Instead of sizing down when you feel your heel slipping out of the back of your shoes, look towards inserts instead.  

Ask your Chiropodist about inserts

Inserts can really help to make your shoes fit beautifully. From cushioning the foot to providing extra support – they’re a handy modification to make your heels fit better and feel much more comfortable. From tongue pads to full foot inserts, your chiropodist will be able to advise you on the best fit for you.

But our top tip? Limit your heel wearing for those special occasions, and make sure to give your feet a little TLC in between.

Need some help or advice? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here

What is a Podiatrist and how do they differ from a Chiropodist?

What is a Podiatrist and how do they differ from a Chiropodist?

One of the most common questions we’re asked in clinic is this: what is a podiatrist and how do they differ from a chiropodist? Find out in today’s post1

What is a Podiatrist?

A podiatrist is someone who specialises in the diagnosis and treatment of foot problems, and conditions related to the lower legs. A podiatrist will usually be your best port of call if you have a foot injury or condition.  

Being specialist healthcare professionals, podiatrists are experts in the studies of the foot and ankle.

What is a Chiropodist?

A chiropodist is an outdated term for doctors that specialise in foot problems. A podiatrist and a chiropodist is actually the exact same thing. 

Why did the term change?

There were two main reasons said to be behind the change. Firstly, in the 1950’s and 1960’s, chiropractic medicine was beginning to become popular. However, with this popularity came confusion between the two terms ‘chiropodists’ and ‘chiropractors’. 

Secondly, the word ‘chiropody’ is made up of both ‘chiro’ and ‘pod’, which means hand and foot in Greek. However, the origins of ‘podiatry’ come from ‘pod’ and ‘jatros’ – meaning physician in Greek. By changing the term to podiatry, it allowed better embracement of the modern practice when it became a recognised branch of modern medical care.

What can a podiatrist treat?

A podiatrist can treat many conditions ranging through from general chiropody (like the cutting and filing of nails, and treatment or corns and calluses) to biochemical assessment and the provision of orthotics. You can view our list of services here.

How do I find a podiatrist I can trust?

Make sure your podiatrist is fully qualified. Check the HCPC (the Health & Care Professions Council) registry here, and ask to see your podiatrists certifications.

Ready to make an appointment? 
Call us today on 01226 759660 or contact us here for help and advice. 

What is a corn and how do you treat it?

What is a corn and how do you treat it?

What is a corn and how do you treat it? In today’s post we’ll be explaining all.

What is a corn?

A corn is an area of thickened skin which forms due to pressure, rubbing or friction. There are thee types of corns: hard corns, soft corns and seed corns. Corns cause pain, reduced mobility and can become infected when left untreated. For patients with conditions such as diabetes where there is a loss of feeling in the feet, it’s important to see a podiatrist straight away. 

What are the three types of corns?

Hard corns
Hard corns are the most common, and are usually found on pressure points of the foot. Such as the sole of the foot or on the top of toes where you might experience pressure from footwear.

Soft corns
Soft corns tend to be more uncomfortable and painful then hard corns, and are trickier to treat.

Seed corns
Seed corns can appear on any part of the foot and have a seed-like appearance, hence their name. 

How are corns treated?

Corns are best treated by a professional podiatrist. Your podiatrist will be able to diagnose which type of corn you have, and recommend a suitable treatment plan for you. Typically, the corn will be removed using a scalpel. It’s also recommended to soak the corn in warm water before gently using a foot file to rub down the area. 

Your podiatrist can also help you by providing you with devices to help prevent friction between your toes, or redistribute the pressure across the soles of your feet (using orthoses). 

How do I prevent corns?

A good start is make sure you’re wearing comfortable, supportive shoes and socks. By selecting the correct footwear, you can reduce the friction and pressure on your foot.
It’s also important to use foot files or pumice stones regularly to gently rub away hard skin. Also, moisturise the skin on your feet to keep it healthy and soft. 

Need to book in for a treatment or ask for some advice? Give us a call today on 01226 759 660 or contact us here.