5 Ways to Care for Your Feet

5 Ways to Care for Your Feet

They are probably one of the most used parts of your body. Every day you are on your feet, your wheels to the world. So, when anything affects these two important appendages it can slow you down when slowing down is not an option.

Most people take them for granted and when it is least expected the skin can start to crack, the toes may ache, arches may drop, knees may strain or the ankles could become weak. Take heed before you are forced into limping through it all and try these 5 ways to care for your feet.

Relieve the Load

Out of your 206 bones most (about 26) are in your feet and hands. Therefore, it is important to understand the overall impact the rest of your body poses on your dogs. Each pound of weight you carry stresses the matrix of bones, ligaments, tendons and muscles that carry you through the day. One of the most effective ways you can relieve overall physical stress is by losing extra weight you may be carrying.

Losing weight can decrease your chances of developing:

  • Tendon inflammation
  • Inflammation in the plantar fascia, the tough band of tissue in the sole of your foot
  • Osteoarthritis

James Mahoney, DPM, an associate professor of podiatric surgery at Des Moines University in Iowa comments,

“Even 25 extra pounds can tip the scales to more problems in the foot and ankle.”

In addition, weight can lead to more serious systemic problems that affect the feet such as gout, diabetes, and peripheral arterial disease which is an accumulation of leg arterial plaque decreasing blood flow to the feet.

Talk to your doctor about a healthy weight loss program including low-impact aerobic exercise.

Shoe Sense

Many people, especially women, will squeeze into a pair of shoes simply for the aesthetic result ignoring any potential damage that could result. In due time painful conditions could arise from wearing the wrong shoes including hammer toes, ingrown toenails and overall aching discomfort.

Also, don’t assume that the size you have always purchased will remain so. As you age your feet could actually increase up to half a size. Shop for shoes late in the day for this is when your feet can “swell” so purchasing a size slightly larger may be optimal. Don’t skimp either, cheap shoes and subpar synthetics can eventually take their toll. Stick to leather and/or cotton designs to maintain healthy air flow, support and proper stretching room.

Sock it to ‘Em

Sometimes wearing two pairs of socks can offer enough comfort and support to keep your feet strong. You can try two athletic socks or a dress sock over an athletic sock. Doubling up can help with excess moisture that can affect the skin as well as cushion reduced sole fat layers due to age.

Inserts

There are many over-the-counter inserts you can experiment with. However, they can be expensive and possibly cause knee or leg pain if the wrong ones are chosen.

See your podiatrist for a proper assessment and fitting of inserts that could not only relieve foot pain but rebalance your entire skeletal structure. Prescribed orthotic inserts may help with back, hip and knee pain you have been struggling with for years. Also, a podiatrist may discover that one leg is ever so slightly longer than the other which can often be readjusted by a simple insert.

Foot TLC

Finally, it’s time to treat your feet as you do your most precious material items like your cell phone or car. Taking car of your hooves by administering self-massage, soaking, exercise and even a pedicure can make all the difference in the world. When your feet are well kept, blood flow, internal adhesions and even arthritis could be alleviated.

If you’re a guy whose never experienced a pedicure because it’s been considered too feminine, think again. Your partner will appreciate your soft soles and clipped nails which will no longer dig into them like sandpaper and pins.

Use these 5 ways to care for your feet and you just may improve many facets of your overall systemic health.

 



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