I had what I thought was an ingrowing toenail which I, in a mum way, let fester assuming it would sort itself out, for a couple of weeks before being kept awake by it most nights began to feel a little big silly. But should I see a chiropodist or a podiatrist I wondered. What was the difference? Being lazy I just Googled the closet ones and then being in a lot of pain I booked an appointment with the first available. Not only did it turn out that I didn't actually have and ingrowing toenail (on that foot) but instead I'd torn the skin and it couldn't heel but also my bunion could probably be fixed without surgery. Hurrah hurrah. In fact we sat around and chatted as long as the baby allowed and I learnt LOADS.
He' 'packed' my toe twice now (slipping a bit of paper under the nail... it's pretty eye-watering) but the toe is infected and because I am run down and tired I just can't clear it on my own so I'm going to have antibiotics. But here's what I've learned...
- A chiropodist and a podiatrist are the same things. You can basically call yourself a chiropodist with minimal training. The real trained chiropodists got cross about this and changed their title to podiatrist. The naughty untrained chiropodists did the same and so now the only real way to tell the difference is from the letters after their name. You need to see HCPC, and M.Ch.S after their name. Or they are a bit dodgy.
- By wearing the correct footwear and splaying your toes all the time (which is apparently very difficult for most people... try it) you can fix your bunion.
- Bunions are actually common in mums as the hormones that relax everything relax the arches of your feet making them longer. Because the way the foot is formed it can't actually go longer so the big toe gets pulled round by the other bones. This causes problems but you can get insoles to fix it.
- You used to be able to go to the chiropodist/podiatrist, get a local anaesthetic and have your toe fixed. They tend not to do it now because of health and safety.
- Most people thing their toe nails are sort of horizontally formed. In fact they are sort of vertical strips which means the ingrowing nail is an end strip that has been left in. Ow.
- I thought my Air Max were good for my feet because they are so damn comfy. I was wrong... They are not foot shaped. You need something footshaped. I have yet to find a nice foot shaped shoe