FAQ

We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions we regularly get from our patients. Feel free to scroll through to learn a little bit more about what we do at Bartlett Foot Center. If you have any additional questions don’t hesitate to give us a call at: (630) 518-4009 

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Q: Can issues that arise from not wearing the right shoe have long-term effects?

A: Down the road ill-fitting shoes or shoes with improper support can lead to chronic pain as well as contracture deformities like bunions and hammertoes.

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Q: Can summer shoes be harmful to a person’s feet?

A: Yes! In fact we have a name for it “Flip Flop Itis” – which in essence is arch fatigue or plantar fasciitis.

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Q: What should a person look for in a shoe or sandal to keep their foot healthy?

A: Plenty of toe space and good support.

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Q: What can I expect from my first visit?

A: An overall evaluation of your foot health – we will focus on your main concern or issue but also give you a general synopsis on what is good for your particular feet and how to care for them.

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Q: Are foot problems widespread?

A: Yes, foot problems are quite widespread. In fact, 75% of Americans will experience varying degrees of foot problems at some point during their lives.

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Q: How complicated is the foot?

A: The foot is one of the more intricate parts of the body. It contains 26 bones, 107 ligaments, 33 joints and 19 tendons and muscles. All of these work together to provide the structure of the foot and allow it to move in a variety of ways.

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Q: How many bones are in the feet?

A: There are 52 bones in your feet which makes up about 25% of all the bones in your body.

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Q: Do men or women typically have more foot problems?

A: Women have about four times the foot problems as men with a lifetime of wearing high heels causing many of the issues.

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Q: How much do people typically walk?

A: The American Podiatric Medical Association says the average person takes between 8,000 – 10,000 steps per day which amounts to a couple miles. All together, the average person walks about 115,000 miles throughout their life which is enough to circle the globe more than 4 times.

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Q: How much pressure is on your foot when walking?

A: The pressure on your foot can vary between activities. When walking it is typically around your body weight but when running it can be three to four times your weight.

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Q: What special tips should I follow when shopping for shoes?

A: According to the American Podiatric Medical Association the best time to shop for shoes is in the afternoon. Your feet tend to swell a little during the day which provides the best opportunity to find properly fitting shoes. Another tip is to measure your feet to get the perfect size and to always try both shoes on as one foot can be a bit longer than the other. 

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Q: How should toenails be trimmed?

A: Your toenails should be trimmed straight across and be left slightly longer than the tips of your toes.

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Q: What exercises are safe for your feet and good for your health?

A: Walking is always a great exercise for your feet and great for your health. It improves circulation, helps weight control and promotes overall well being.

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Q: Can serious medical problems first show up in the feet?

A: Yes, your feet mirror your general health.  Problems such as arthritis, diabetes, nerve and circulatory disorders can show their initial symptoms in the feet which can be your first sign of more serious medical problems.

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Q: How many podiatrists are there in America?

A: There are about 13,320 doctors of podiatric medicine that actively practice in America. That means there is an average of one podiatric physician for every 20,408 people and they receive more than 60 million visits per year. Even with that number of visits, that’s likely only a fraction of the amount of foot problems people experience. Many people erroneously believe their feet are supposed to hurt and go untreated.

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Q: Are foot problems hereditary?

A: The American Podiatric Medical Association believes only a small percentage of foot problems are hereditary. It’s typically neglect and lack of knowledge on how to care for ones feet that bring on foot problems. A lifetime of wear and tear plus neglect is why podiatrists usually see older patients.

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Q: What are corns and calluses?

A: Corns and calluses are caused by friction and pressure from the skin rubbing against bony areas when wearing shoes. They rise up to protect sensitive areas if signs of soreness are ignored.

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Q: What are plantar warts?

A: Plantar warts are cased by a virus which you can contract through cuts in the foot of breaks in the skin. Walking around barefoot on dirty pavement or littered ground can expose your feet to this painful skin infection.

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Q: What education do podiatrists go through?

A: A DPM (or doctor of podiatric medicine) is a health care professional trained in the care of your feet. They receive conventional medical training plus special training on the foot, ankle and lower leg. All 50 states require they pass rigorous state board exams before they are issued a license. Most states also require continuing education to renew their license.

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Q: How widespread are foot problems?

A: About 19% of the US population has an average of 1.4 foot problems each year.

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Q: How widespread is athlete’s foot or other foot infections?

A: About 5% of the US population has foot infections including athlete’s foot, fungal infections, warts and more each year.

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Q: How widespread are ingrown toenails?

A: About 5% of the US population has ingrown toenails or other toenail problems each year.

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Q: How widespread are corns and callouses?

A: About 5% of the US population has corns or calluses each year.

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Q: How widespread are fallen arches or injuries to the feet?

A: About 6% of the US population has foot injuries, bunions and flat feet or fallen arches each year.

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Q: What are the most common foot problems?

A: About 60% of all foot and ankle injuries were sprains and strains of the ankle.

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Q: How does income affect foot health?

A: The more money a person makes the less likely they are to experience foot problems.

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Q: Which doctors provide the most foot care?

A: Podiatric physicians provide 39% of all foot care, orthopedic physicians provide 13% of care, physical therapists provide 11% of care and all other physicians provide the remaining 37% of care.

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Q: Is it more expensive to be treated by a podiatrist?

A: Podiatrists are four times less likely to use costly inpatient services than other physicians.

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Q: What other stats describe the care provided by a podiatrist?

A: Podiatric physicians provide treatment for 82% of corn and calluses, 65% of toenail problems, 63% of bunions, 46% of flat feet and 43% of toe/joint deformities. Patients with foot problems visit on average 3.7 times per year while other physicians average 3 visits and physical therapists average 7.1 visits.

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Q: Do people visit podiatrists as they get older?

A: Yes! As people continue to age they experience an increase in medical problems including those related to their feet.  Medical Economics magazine reported that 56% of all older patients have seen a podiatric physician.

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Q: How many people visit a podiatric physician each year?

A: About 5% of the US population sees a podiatric physician each year.

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Q: Are podiatrists on staff at many hospitals?

A: Yes! About 80% of all hospitals have a podiatrist on staff with the largest hospitals more likely to have one.

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Q: How many podiatrists graduate each year?

A: There are 7 podiatric medical colleges that graduate an average of 592 new podiatric physicians each year.

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Q: How many podiatrists are board qualified?

A: About 53% of all active podiatric physicians were certified by one or more recognized medical boards.

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Q: How old is the average podiatrist?

A: The average podiatrist is 42 years old and has been in practice for 13 years.

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Q: What percentage of podiatrists are female?

A: Only about 14%

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Q: Is group or solo practice more common?

A: About 58% are in solo practice with an average of 3 employees.

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Q: Are podiatrists typically licensed in more than one state?

A: 48% have a license in one state, 31% have a license in two states, 19% have a license in three states and 2% have a license in four states.

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