General podiatry questions
What does a podiatrist do?
Good question. Our podiatrists look after your feet and provide diagnosis, treatments, and remedies to help alleviate pain and discomfort. If you are experiencing foot pain, ankle pain, recurring foot injuries, or have skin or nail conditions such as rashes, ingrown toenails, corns and calluses, then we’re here to help. With 4 years of university education and training we’ll assess, diagnose and provide a treatment plan specifically for you and your condition to get you back on your feet comfortably again.
The 10 most common foot problems we treat in our podiatry clinics
Do I need a referral from my doctor to see a podiatrist?
No. You do not need a referral and you can make an appointment directly at one of our podiatry clinics in Linden Park, Stirling or Mount Barker. The only exception is if you have specific chronic medical conditions and are eligible for an Enhanced Primary Care plan and GP Management plan. In this case, you will need a referral from your GP.
How often do I need to see a podiatrist?
This depends on your condition and whether you need ongoing treatment for a while or whether a once off or an occasional visit will be enough. We suggest coming into the clinic twice a year for general podiatry check-ups, because taking preventive health measures is more effective and less expensive than having to treat acute conditions. If you require regular ongoing podiatry foot care, an interval of 6-8 weeks is generally ideal.
At your first visit, we’ll assess, diagnose and treat your foot condition and together we’ll take into consideration your lifestyle needs to determine the best course of treatment and how many visits you may need.
What do I need to bring to an appointment?
This depends on your foot problem. You may need to bring a few things to help us diagnose your condition and provide a treatment plan during your appointment. If you have medical reports or x-rays, please bring these with you as they will give us the history of your foot problem which will help us arrive at a treatment plan sooner. Other items that may be needed are:
- GP referral letter and medical history
- Copies of X-rays or scans
- Orthotics or inner soles that you wear
- 2-3 pairs of shoes that you wear regularly
- Wear the right clothing so that we can assess your feet and lower limbs
- Private healthcare card (if claiming with private health insurance)
Where are you located?
Our podiatry clinics are located in Linden Park, Stirling and Mount Barker.
Please see our contact details here. https://sanderspodiatry.com.au/contact-us/
Where do I park?
There is plenty of free parking available at all our podiatry clinics in Linden Park, Stirling and Mount Barker, either at the back of the clinic or on the street in front of the clinic.
Do you have disabled or wheelchair access?
Yes, we provide disabled and wheelchair access at all our clinics.
What is your cancellation policy?
Please give us 24 hours notice if you are going to miss an appointment. We know that at times things can happen at the last minute but a courtesy call to our clinic would be appreciated. A 50% fee may be incurred if less than 24 hours notice is given. If you miss an appointment without letting us know, the full appointment fee may be charged.
Questions about payment
What sort of payments do you accept?
We accept cash payments, health insurance claiming and most credit, debit and EFTPOS cards (we do not accept Diners Club and American Express). Please talk to us if you want to pay with a personal cheque so that we can arrange this ahead of time.
Does Medicare cover podiatry treatment?
People with certain chronic conditions such as diabetes, arthritis, vision impairment or other health conditions that require ongoing healthcare may be able to claim podiatry services under Medicare. This requires a GP management plan and Enhanced Primary Care referral from your GP and there are some limits to number of visits available (max 5 per calendar year).
For the majority of people however podiatry is considered an allied health service by the Australian government and therefore Medicare won’t cover your podiatry visits. However, your private health insurance will cover part of your treatment depending on the level of your extras cover.
Does your clinic bulk bill?
We do not bulk bill general podiatry appointments but some of your podiatry service may be covered under your private extra health insurance.
Medicare Enhanced Primary Care appointments are currently bulk billed.
Does my private health insurance cover podiatry treatments?
Yes. Your private health fund will cover podiatry treatment if you have included podiatry in your extras service. The amount covered depends on the level of cover you have. Contact your private health fund to find out how much of each appointment is covered.
We use HICAPS which allows us to directly claim from your private health fund at the time of your treatment, so that you won’t need to process the claim afterwards. All you need to do is swipe your health fund card and cover the gap payment.
What can I expect at my first podiatry treatment?
Your first appointment with Sanders Podiatry will be for 30-45 minutes. During the appointment we’ll do a general assessment of your feet (skin, nails, joints, circulation and sensation) and may also provide a gait analysis depending on your presenting foot condition. We’ll discuss your personalised treatment plan and may give you some self-help exercises or activities at home, where appropriate.
Do you accept Department of Veteran Affairs claims?
Yes. We accept Department of Veteran Affairs claims. A GP referral is required for DVA gold card holders and eligible white card holders.
Questions about specific conditions
Do you treat children’s feet?
Yes. We are a family friendly clinic and help children from babies to adulthood. Our gentle and experienced podiatrists help with many common childhood foot conditions such as heel pain, Severs Disease, fungal nail infections, ingrown nails, plantar warts, ankle sprains, flat feet, toe walking and general growing pains.
The 10 most common foot problems in children
Do you treat older people?
We treat many older people with foot conditions such as bunions, plantar fasciitis, and skin and nail problems such as thickening toenails and fungal infections. We can provide general foot and nail treatment even if you’re having difficulty reaching the feet, have difficulty seeing them, or just want a bit of pampering.
We also specialise in diabetes foot conditions and will provide an optimal treatment plan to reduce the risk of diabetes related foot complications. We’ll also give you advice and guidance on what to do at home to take care of your feet.
The 7 most common foot problems for people over 65
Do you help people with diabetes?
Yes, we help many people who have diabetes.
Diabetes can increase the chances of developing problems in your feet. Sometimes diabetes symptoms can show up in your feet first. The most common foot problems for people with diabetes are peripheral neuropathy which is essentially nerve damage, or peripheral vascular disease which is poor circulation.
Regular podiatry may help reduce the potential long term complications due to both these conditions with the aim to maintain or restore good health and function in your feet.
Diabetes foot care and guidelines for healthy feet
Do you help with general foot pain?
Yes, we can help to assess and diagnose the source of your foot pain. This could be referred pain or pain that arises from ill-fitting footwear, bunions, or other foot conditions.
Sometimes the pain can be felt in the ankles, knees, hips and lower back. When your foot alignment is out of balance, this can cause pain up through the leg, and vice versa. We’ll have a look at your gait and foot function to assess and diagnose the source of your foot pain.
Can you help with plantar fasciitis?
Yes, we can provide many treatment options if you have plantar fasciitis. Plantar Fasciitis is a condition of the plantar fascia – the tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, connecting the heel to the toes, forming the arch of the foot. When this tissue is over-stretched or strained, small tears can occur in the fascia causing inflammation and pain. Treatment is often multi-factorial and addresses not only the foot itself, but also the stresses it is exposed to, footwear, foot function, mechanics and alignment.
Plantar Fasciitis – Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Do foot problems cause knee or lower back pain?
Yes, this is possible. Feet that turn inwards or outwards, roll inwards or outwards, feet that have arthritis or bunions or other conditions that cause a misalignment of the feet, will have an impact on your walking style which can affect the knees, hips and lower back, not to mention the enjoyment of walking and running.
During your appointment, we may do a gait analysis, a scientifically developed method to analyse your walking or running style by observing the way you move and the impact of this movement on your feet, hips, lower back and limbs. This analysis provides us with a significant amount of information which in turn helps us understand the best course of treatment.
What is GAIT analysis and how does it help?
What if I need orthotics (orthoses)?
Sometimes the feet may need a little extra support to help ease pain and discomfort through aligning the foot’s structure, through strengthening the muscles, or simply alleviating high areas of pressure. Correctly fitting and supportive footwear can help to a degree, but customisable premade or custom-made orthoses can minimise the damaging forces that can be caused throughout the feet from misalignment.
Prescribing an orthotic is mostly done as part of an overall treatment plan. This may include exercises to stretch and strengthen the foot and ankle muscles, retraining your gait to better support your feet and ankles, providing additional padding, strapping or bracing.
Orthotics may help to both align and strengthen the foot providing a strong foundation. They can also relieve pain and discomfort in feet, allowing the feet some breathing space to self correct.
We only prescribe orthotics if needed and we’ll discuss the long term impact of orthotics, how they will benefit your condition and how long you may need to wear them, which is unique to each person.
Orthoses – what they do and why you may need them