Every morning that you get up to go brush your teeth, in your foot alone, 26 bones are shifting, 33 joints are moving, and 20 muscles tendons are constantly contracting on every single step, and on every single push, all within a matter of seconds. Doesn’t it really astonish you that you are this amazing complex being, and you are doing all of this with little much thinking. Do you enjoy walking? Do you enjoy playing your favorite sport? Do you enjoy being able to dance, jump, kick, and explore the world thanks to your feet? Now let’s imagine all those freedoms taken away from you. That means no more jogging, no more soccer, no more yoga, etc. Think about it, the number one thing that makes you happy, and then, “BOOM”, that is taken away from you. How are going to cope with that… for the rest of your life?
I’m here to tell you that being able to walk, being able to get from point A to point B, is a blessing, not a guarantee. Something as small as being able to wiggle your toes, getting out of bed in the morning, or walking your kids to the park can be life changing if you don’t have the capability of doing so. You only get one pair in your life, so don’t take your feet for granted. They do so much for you that it’s only right that you return the favor by providing proper health care to your feet.
That is why I choose to dedicate my life to a career to this special part of the body, it is called Podiatry. No not Pediatrics, but Podiatry; the study of the foot and ankle. I am just a student in my first year but I cannot get enough of loving this specialized field. Podiatrists are some of the happiest people who perform miracle on a daily basis by getting their patients back on their feet. Many of you are living with Ingrown toe nails, bunions, hammer toes, athlete’s foot, shin splits, aggravating heel pain, etc. You may be afraid, embarrassed, or un-financially stable to go visit a doctor. We tend to fall into the trap that “it just hurts a little bit, the pain will go away” or “I don’t know why it turned colors but it doesn’t hurt so its fine”. But listen to me, something that seemed so small at the time can turn out to be life impacting the following year. It’s a domino effect that could be easily reverted by simply visiting your local podiatrist early. Just like the tires on a car there a lot of miles you place on your foot, eventually they are going to need a checkup before they fall apart on you. In summary, take care of your feet, they have gotten you this far in life so why not give back to them by seeing a specialist.
Roberto De Los Santos, CSPM student class of 2018
A longer version of this article will be published in the May/June 2015 issue of PreMedLife magazine.