Almost everyone goes to the doctor from time to time, whether it’s for a regular check-up or because of some other medical problem. Most of us have been seeing doctors since we were children. But going to a podiatrist is often a new experience for people. Not everyone develops a foot or ankle problem, but when they do, they may need the specialized professional care that only a podiatrist can provide.

Foot and ankle issues can cause significant pain and discomfort, limit your mobility, and lead to other health problems. Obtaining the right diagnosis of your condition and the right treatment plan from the right podiatrist is essential to restoring your health and quality of life. But choosing a podiatrist can be a challenge, given that it’s not something most folks have done before. There are almost 900 podiatrists in Florida, more than in any state other than New York, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. With so many foot and ankle specialists to choose from, how can you know which one is the right one for you?

As you explore your options, here are five essential things to consider before making an appointment with a podiatrist

What Do Patients and Colleagues Say?

Start by speaking with people who know more than you or have needed a podiatrist’s care before. Ask your family doctor or primary care physician for a referral, and talk to with any family members, friends, or colleagues who have needed treatment for foot or ankle problems and were satisfied with their podiatrist, care, and results. If you do get referrals from these sources, do some online research and see what other patients say about the recommended podiatrist on third-party review sites.

Does The Podiatrist Have The Right Education, Training, and Credentials?

Our feet and ankles are some of the most complex and intricate parts of our bodies. That’s why an entire medical specialty is dedicated to addressing problems of the foot and ankle. Your podiatrist needs to have exceptional and focused knowledge, skills, training, and experience. When doing your research, look where they went to medical school and did their residency and whether they are board-certified by The American Board of Podiatric Medicine.

Also, medical knowledge is continually expanding, and new approaches and techniques can dramatically improve treatments and outcomes. It is essential that your podiatrist not just rest on their medical school laurels and that he or she constantly stays abreast of these developments through ongoing professional education and training.

Is The Podiatrist A Leader in Their Field?

The best podiatrists are those who have earned the respect and attention of their colleagues. Try to choose a podiatrist who is active in their profession, who frequently writes and lectures on foot and ankle subjects, and who has been influential in the development and application of the latest technology and methodologies.

Does The Podiatrist Focus On Non-Surgical Or Minimally Invasive Treatment Options When Appropriate?

Look for a podiatrist who explores all non-surgical or minimally invasive surgical treatment options before recommending surgery. Ask them about the minimally invasive procedures they perform and how many patients they have treated successfully through such techniques. Top podiatrists know that surgery should be the last resort if other treatments can achieve the same results.

Do You Feel Comfortable and In Good Hands?

The doctor-patient relationship is uniquely personal. Patients see a doctor when they are vulnerable and in need of help, putting their trust and health in the hands of their physician. It is critical that you feel comfortable and confident that your podiatrist is not only competent and technically skilled, but that they also have empathy, concern, and a pleasant “bedside manner.”

JAWSpodiatry: South Florida’s Choice For Exceptional Foot and Ankle Care

At JAWSpodiatry, we know how painful and frustrating foot or ankle problems can be. We also understand that you want to resolve any such issues as quickly and as efficiently as possible. That’s why our foot and ankle specialists will explore all possible alternatives to treat your condition and see if a non-surgical solution can address your problem. If we do recommend surgery, our experienced podiatrist will perform your procedure with the utmost care and precision, using the most advanced technology and methods. Please contact us today at (954) 922-7333 to schedule a consultation.