Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Don't Let Your Feet Rebel

Today is the first day of summer and yesterday, I posted a blog about feet. Why? Because they’re the most neglected part of our body despite the fact that they support literally tons of body weight daily. Actually, if you’re a woman, it’s likely that your heels are the most ignored part if you’re painting your toes. This is so true for me in the winter when I will go days barely running the washcloth over them.

And of course, it’s like anything else: if you don’t take care of your feet, they will rebel. I’m talking about the calluses, corns, athletes’s foot, or other foot problems we can experience from time to time. For me, it’s constant calluses that form on the balls of my feet.

Years ago, the calluses would get so bad that it would feel like I had a pebble on the bottom of my foot it would make me alter the way I walked even more. I’ve attributed them to my gait and how my foot hits the ground when I walk. But the quality of shoe that I wear also played a big role, because as soon as I started to wear better shoes, my calluses were much less of a problem.

I found this surprising, but in a survey of one thousand adults by the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA), 72% sited foot pain as the number one reason they don’t exercise! Don’t let foot pain prevent you from staying active and healthy. Here are some ways to keep them in good working order and looking nice:

  • Give them a good scrub daily with a soapy wash cloth or brush daily to remove dead skin
  • Dry them well after a shower and use a creamy moisturizer, especially on the heels where the skin can get particularly dry and cracked.
  • Use a pumice stone on wet feet to smooth down calluses, before they get too big. The APMA actually recommends having a Podiatrist remove calluses that have gotten thick to prevent infection. Here is a guide for removing calluses and corns.
  • Wear shoes that fit properly to avoid slipping or sliding that can encourage calluses and corns.
  • Should we wear flipflops in public showers to prevent athlete’s foot? It’s recommended that you do, however, my thought is that we should clean them well after using them in public places since they’ll likely be carrying the fungus on them.

Check out the APMA website for more tips on how to keep your feet healthy all year round!!

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