Foot Care Tips
Foot Care Tips
Few tips one should keep in mind for healthy foot care:
- Never walk bare foot even at home.
- Always wear extra width, extra depth well cushioned footwear, so that there is enough room for toes to move and they are not cramped. Wearing shoes with narrow and pointed tips and high pointed heels, thin soles and inadequate padding are bad for the health of the feet. Corns and calluses, bunions, tendonitis, and arch sprains are some of the conditions which may result from this kind of footwear. Ladies' daily use footwear should not have a difference of more than one inch between the height of forefoot and the heel area of footwear. One can go for wedges or platform kind of footwear.
- Practise daily foot care. Wash your feet with warm water and a mild soap. Thoroughly dry your feet, especially between the toes. Use a moisturizing cream or a lotion to prevent dryness and cracking. Avoid moisturizing the areas between the toes.
- Do not wear the same shoes daily. Try to give sun exposure to shoes on holidays, so that the moisture and dampness inside it is taken care of.
- Always buy footwear of natural material; avoid footwear of synthetic material.
- Never buy foot wears in the morning. Better to buy your footwear in the evening, when your feet are at their largest size. Up to 5% of people are prone to swelling in the feet at the end of the day.
- Wear new shoes initially for few hours to allow the wearing in.
- Never go to places where you have to walk a lot with brand new shoes as you might have shoe bites and sore feet.
- The useful life of a running shoe is 450 to 600 miles. This means that if you are running 15 miles a week, you should consider changing your running shoes after 35 to 40 weeks.
- Always wear activity and sports specific shoes like racquet specific sports shoes that are made to support side steps and stop and go movements. Basketball shoes give you side support and flexibility. Walking, running and marathon running shoes are different.
- Children's feet grow faster. Check for their foot size once in every three to four month to see that the existing shoes are not tight fitting. After the age of six years, foot size growth becomes a little slower.
- Our feet are made in a way that there is an even distribution of body weight according to the strength of muscles, ligaments and joints. If there is an uneven distribution of weight because of flat feet or high arch feet, certain areas of our feet may take extra weight and the person may complain of heel pain, forefoot pain, arch pain, tired feet at the end of the day, knee pain, back pain and calluses in feet.
- For assessment of arch, biomechanics of foot and gait, a podiatrist consultation is very helpful. If something significant is noticed during assessment, he can advice custom made orthotics and modification in footwear.
- Change socks every day, so that are clean and draw the moisture away from your feet. Cotton socks with acrylic, blend during summer and rainy season. During winters, woollen socks winter are the best. Change socks daily or even more frequently if they become damp because of excessive sweating.
- Trim toenails often. Always cut toenails straight across leaving them a little longer at the corners. Use nail clippers to make neat cuts. Do not cut too deep or tear away a nail with your fingers or dull scissors. Finish the edge with a nail file.
- Examine your feet regularly. Check for cuts, scrapes, bruises, calluses or corns. Swelling or redness may be signs of infection. If signs of fungal infection like redness, itching, dry and scaling of skin are present, go to a podiatrist or a physician.
- Do not try any kind of bathroom surgery for corn, callous and infected ingrown toe nail like conditions on your own. Go to a podiatrist for any underlying condition.
- People with diabetes, who have compromised blood supply of feet and loss of sensation because of neuropathy, should always take extra care of their feet. It is said people with diabetes should take care of their feet as they take care of their face.
- Avoid extreme temperature exposures like in summers. Chilblains are very common in extreme cold. During winters, avoid exposure to cold by wearing woolen socks and double socks when the temperature drops to unbearably low levels. Keeping feet warm during winter is the first protection from chilblains.
- Your feet need plenty of exercise to maintain good circulation, they also need proper rest.
Dr. Gobind Singh Bisht
Senior Consultant - Podiatry
Max Super Speciality Hospital, Saket
Max Hospital, Gurgaon
Max Multi Speciality Centre, Panchsheel Park