Sarah Tough is originally from Grangemouth, but now lives and works in Larbert. She studied at Glasgow Caledonian University, where she earned a BSc in Podiatry, which is a required qualification for employment in the NHS.
Sarah opened her practice, Podiatry Plus, in Larbert in 2013. She chose the business name, Podiatry Plus, to keep the title simple. She also explained that the name allows for expansion in the future. She helps patients who suffer from hard skin, calluses, corns, and verrucae. She also offers reflexology and assesses overall foot function.
What initially inspired you to become a podiatrist?
I studied reflexology first, which sparked my interest in feet! Feet are crucial for balance and mobility and, as a podiatrist, I can keep patients walking and active without pain. Being able to improve someone’s quality of life is a great reward. I always smile when a patient leaves saying it is like walking on air!
You are HCPC registered, can you explain what this means to potential customers?
HCPC is a professional organisation which qualified podiatrists are members of. They only register people who meet their standards so that they can practise safely and effectively. They also check the quality of training courses so that when someone completes one meeting their standards, they can register that person.
What treatments do you offer?
I offer routine foot care and advice, corn and callus removal, verrucae treatment, diabetic foot management, ingrown toenail treatment, cosmetic nail reconstruction, general podiatry care in adults and children, and the Lacuna method for fungal nails.
What are the benefits of reflexology?
A great treat for your feet! Not only is reflexology relaxing, but it can also: improve nerve function and blood circulation, eliminate your body toxins, boost energy. Overall, it’s an enjoyable and relaxing way to spend an hour. Reflexology can also be combined with a routine treatment. In this instance, you would receive 30 minutes of a routine treatment and 30 minutes reflexology.
What does community mean to you?
I care about our community and how things affect it. I have been an active member of the local Rotary Club raising funds for lots of interesting projects. My favourite was the Santa events at Christmas time, with the wee ones’ eyes popping out their heads to see Santa Claus!
I have worked with a few charities on providing foot care for people who could not afford it in the past. I also do some work with Falkirk Football Club.
How has the pandemic affected your industry?
Like lots of local businesses, Podiatry Plus has been affected. But thankfully I have a loyal patient group who have supported me through this. I have put in place a few changes to keep myself and my clients safe and well. I have extended time between patients and ask clients to use hand gel on arrival and departure. I also ask if my clients can please wear a face mask and I have put a screen in the clinic for extra protection. And although the clinic has always been extensively cleaned, I have increased cleaning procedures.
What has been the greatest challenge over the last year?
My greatest challenge over the last year has been the loss of my mother. Anyone who has lost their mum will understand the empty feeling. But a loss during a pandemic prevented real celebration of her life. It prevented friends and family providing personal comfort as well. Although, we plan as a family to have a big get together to celebrate her life when we can. A lot of people have lost loved ones during this pandemic, and this is a quote that helps me: “They have gone from sight, but never from our hearts.”
How do you spend your free time?
I am lucky to have both daughters and their families stay close by. I love spending time with them and cooking Sunday dinners with the whole family (pre Covid, but something I am very much looking forward to again). My next big love is travel, so I hope to go all over the world before I get too old!
Do you have a business motto?
Your feet deserve every bit of care and attention like any other body part because healthy feet are happy feet.
This year my husband and I are celebrating 40 years of marriage, so I am working on an interesting fundraiser for Strathcarron Hospice who also celebrate 40 years in 2021. There will be more details on this in the next edition of 17 Degrees Magazine, watch this space!