10 Tips to Keep Your Feet Healthy
Our feet accompany us through a long life. Each of us has only one chance to have two feet. They are irreplaceable. The human foot is a marvel of biomechanical engineering that most of us take for granted until the system fails or breaks down. The average person will walk the equivalent of twice around the world in a lifetime, which is a long time on your feet.
10 Tips to Keep Your Feet Healthy
1. Inspect your feet regularly and pay attention to changes in color, texture or appearance. Perform a foot self-exam once a week when you take a bath or shower. As you’re drying off your feet, take a good look on the soles for any scaling and between your toes for peeling areas. That could signal athlete’s foot. Also look for discoloration of the nails, which could indicate a nail fungus. If you have diabetes, you should inspect your feet every day since diabetes leads to higher risk of foot sores and infections.
2. Maintain good foot hygiene, including washing and drying between the toes.Keep your feet clean and dry. Healthy feet start with good hygiene. You should wash your feet and allow proper drying time and be sure to dry well between individual toes. Change your socks and air out your shoes to prevent fungus infections.
3. Hydrate the skin. Southern California weather and open shoes can cause rapid loss of moisture from the skin and may result in cracking or the formation of fissures. It is helpful to replace the moisture content by using lotions or creams on a regular basis.
4. Buy proper-size shoes. Shoes that are too tight can cause long-term foot problems. Shop for shoes at the end of the day to compensate for foot swelling that occurs later in the day, and wear the same type of socks or hosiery you’ll be wearing with the shoes. Choose a broad, rounded shoe with plenty of room for your toes and a wide, stable heel. Avoid pointy shoes, which can cramp your toes and cause ingrown toenails and calluses.
5.Choose breathable footwear. To help keep your feet dry and healthy, wear shoes made of leather to allow air to circulate. If you’re prone to excessively sweaty feet, look for shoes made of mesh fabrics for maximum breathability.
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6. Don't ignore foot pain. Symptoms that increase or do not resolve within a reasonable period of time need to be evaluated by your podiatric physician. Know when to see a doctor. Don’t attempt to self-treat painful foot woes. “I see many patients who have attempted what I call bathroom surgery, and they’ve made the problem worse,” says Dr. Oware. Any pain, redness, swelling, or discoloration that persists should be checked out by one of our podiatrist. Usually the problem can be cleared up with prescription medicine or a minor in-office procedure. Allowing a doctor to take a look will help prevent minor problems from becoming major ones.
7. Cut toenails straight across. Never cut into the corners — this could cause an ingrown toenail. Gently file away sharp corners or rough edges with an emery board.
8. Exercise. Walking is a great way to keep weight under control and is an excellent conditioner for the feet. Be sure to wear appropriate athletic shoes when exercising.
9. Alternate your shoes each day. Since the feet have sweat glands, your shoes will absorb moisture from your feet, so it is important to allow your shoes to dry out completely.
10. Avoid walking barefoot to help protect your feet from injury and infection.
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