When you pause to think about what your feet do each day, you realize it’s pretty amazing. Consider, for example, the size of your feet relative to the rest of your body; although your feet are quite small in comparison, they hold your entire weight, carry you through your days, allow you to stand, walk, run, jump, and move in all sorts of cool ways.
Dr. Michael Tran, Podiatry & Wound Care Specialist, agrees that feet are amazing and has dedicated his professional life to helping people care for their feet. At All Care Foot & Ankle Center, our staff wants you to continue moving through your life comfortably, but we also want you to enjoy excellent foot care day-to-day! In this post, we offer our best tips for keeping your feet healthy and happy.
Daily care tips
Just like you practice good oral hygiene to keep your teeth beautiful and functioning, you should do some daily foot maintenance. Each day you should carefully wash and dry your feet, including between your toes!
If you can’t balance well enough in the shower to adequately clean your feet, consider washing them while sitting on the edge of your tub before or after your shower. Drying is important, too. Be sure to carefully dry your entire foot — again, including between your toes! The area between your toes is susceptible to infection if it stays damp.
Especially if you’re diabetic, take the time to closely inspect your feet when you wash and dry them. Diabetes can cause nerve damage, and you may not feel small injuries. Diabetes can also decrease blood circulation in your feet, which can slow or prevent the healing of wounds and injuries. Taking a moment to look at your feet each day so that you can address any cuts, scrapes, or other wounds.
Along with washing and drying, treat your feet to a daily moisturizer. You don’t need to moisturize between your toes, and you don’t need any kind of special cream or lotion. Use what you like; even petroleum jelly works well.
Shoes are important
Some of our most important tips relate to footwear, largely because a great deal of discomfort can result from improper footwear. Shoes that don’t fit properly are associated with calluses, corns, and bunions. They can also cause foot, ankle, knee, hip, and back pain and may be related to fallen arches along with other foot problems.
When you choose shoes, make sure there’s plenty of room in the toe box and that no part of your foot is pinched or rubbed. Don’t think that you can “break in” a pair of shoes. They should fit comfortably from the first time you put them on.
Make sure that you wear the proper shoe for what you’re doing. Wear good sneakers if you’re a runner or participating in exercise; wear shoes to protect your feet if your job requires it.
If you must wear heels — and we generally discourage it — wear low heels that are broad and offer a wide support platform for you. High heels put your body in an odd and awkward position and can cause lots of problems both in your feet and in other parts of your body.
Don’t share pedicure equipment or shoes with anyone. If you have calluses or an ingrown toenail, or another problem, see Dr. Tran instead of trying to fix it yourself. Trim your nails regularly and straight across. Use an emery board to shape them.
Wear socks. Change them daily, if not twice per day. Wash them regularly, and soak them in a vinegar solution if they are smelly.
Keep your feet dry. If your shoes or socks make your feet sweat, get different ones. Sometimes synthetic materials can cause your feet to sweat more than usual, and dampness between your toes raises the risk of fungus or infection.
Come visit us
If you have questions about properly caring for your feet, or if you have a problem with your feet, book an appointment at All Care Foot & Ankle Center. We’re happy to answer your specific questions and would be glad to see you! Scheduling is easy. We have two locations, one in Arlington and one in Dallas, and you can schedule either online or by phone.