5 Tips to Keep Your Fabulous Feet Healthy Year Round
Prevention & Treatment Today is National Love My Feet Day. Take time to show your feet you appreciate them with a little tender loving care.
1. Daily hygiene
Foot health begins with good foot hygiene. In the shower, wash your feet thoroughly with soap and water. Afterwards, check the bottoms of your feet and between your toes for cracked, peeling skin -- signs of a fungal infection like athlete’s foot. Don’t forget to check your toenails. Thick, discolored toenails can indicate a nail infection. Make sure your feet are completely dry, taking particular care between your toes. Fungal organisms love hanging out on damp skin.
2. The power of a pamper
The average person logs more than 75,000 miles on their feet before age 50, according to the American Podiatric Medical Association. Pamper your feet with a pedicure and massage. Keep these tips in mind. Use a pumice stone to gently slough off dead skin and never, ever cut your cuticles; push them gently back. Cut your toenails straight across and don’t round the corners. Finish off with a soothing foot rub and slather on the moisturizer to keep skin soft and supple.
"The average person logs more than 75,000 miles on their feet before age 50."
Proper footwear keeps your feet happy and avoids later foot problems like blisters. When buying shoes, shop at the end of the day when your feet are largest and look for rounded toe shoes with good arch support that fit as comfy as your own skin. Always measure your foot and, when trying shoes on, make sure there is an index finger width space between your longest toe and the tip of the shoe and that the back of the shoe doesn’t slide up and down on your heel.
4. Bold bacteria
Our feet are gross, containing 250,000 sweat glands in each foot. Sweat creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Look for socks made with synthetic fibers rather than cotton or wool socks to wick moisture away from the skin and help keep your feet dry. Dry feet are healthy feet.
5. Bones and joints
Our feet are an engineering marvel. Together, they contain more than 50 bones; 60 joints; and 200 muscles, tendons and ligaments. Over time our feet break down, leading to foot pain and discomfort ranging from minor problems like bunions to major problems like foot sores and reduced blood flow caused by diabetes and health disease. If you’re experiencing persistent discoloration, pain, redness or swelling, heed the warning signs and see a podiatrist before the condition worsens.