We all love spring, particularly warm ones like this one. We're busy participating in all kinds of outdoor activities such as walking, running, and team sports. In the winter many of us have been hibernating, just waiting for the first rays of sun to sneak through our blinds. Our feet have also been hiding out. Now that our toes are starting to get a workout we may be running into foot problems we'd rather avoid.
Here are 16 hacks to prevent the most common spring foot problems:
When we're more sedentary and it's cool outside we tend to have few problems with foot odor. But as the temperature rises and we're walking or running our feet can become pretty stinky. Fungus and bacteria love a humid environment.
1. Change out your shoes on a daily basis to let them dry out
2. Wear socks made from materials that wick away moisture from your feet; try socks with materials such as polypropylene or polyethylene instead of moisture attracting cotton
3. Use foot powder to keep your feet dry
4. Plug your shoes in with the SteriShoe+ Ultraviolet Shoe Sanitizer; it destroys 99% of all the fungus and bacteria that cause foot stink
Dry, Cracked Heels
Wearing sandals, walking in backless shoes, and going barefoot will all lead to dry, cracked heels.
5. Use flip flops for short trips outside so that your heels don't get so much battering from the pavement.
6. Soak your feet in the bath and use a pumice stone to get rid of the unsightly dryness
7. Use a creme just for dry and cracked heels such as this newly formulated product Barefoot Botanica Cracked Heel Repair Cream
With any prolonged physical activity you're likely to get a blister. Anything you can do to prevent friction between your skin and your socks and shoes will help.
8. Follow the first three moisture reducing hacks to prevent stinky feet. Dry feet and socks will reduce the friction that cause blisters to form.
9. Buy shoes that fit. Ill-fitting shoes are much more likely to cause blisters.
10. Use surgical tape on skin areas that are blister prone (see my latest blog on this newest hack for blisters).
In spring I always see more heel pain. Weekend warriors or anyone who's been sedentary in the winter months are often the first to call my office.
11. Are your orthotics still working well or are you experiencing mild or even moderate pain when you wear them? Our feet grow and change over the years. It's important to get your orthotics checked on an annual basis to be sure they are still doing the job.
12. Use Dynamic Warm-ups for Runners to reduce the likelihood of heel pain or other foot problems.
13. Buy new shoes. If you haven't bought athletic shoes in a year, it's time for a new pair. If you're a runner or participate in other activities check out my blog How to Buy the Best Running Shoes.
Athlete's Foot and Fungal Toenails
Athletes foot and fungal toenails are caused by fungus. Although fungus is everywhere in our environment it particularly loves to grow where it's warm, wet, and dark; namely our shoes.
14. Reduce the moisture in your shoes by using any of the fixes for stinky feet.
15. Use flip flops in lockers rooms and at swimming pools to avoid fungus rampant in these areas.
16. Wear shoes that fit. If your toes are hitting the top of your shoes they're more likely to cause trauma to your toenails making it much easier for fungus to set up shop.
Having foot pain or fungal toenails call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment, often same day. You can also request an appointment online.
Get our free foot book "No More Foot Pain", mailed directly to your home.
Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.