Aren’t we a little unfair with our feet when it comes to self-care? Making them haul on the streets, and pound them on the pavement with those pointed heels for long hours, but when it comes to taking care, feet are always the last. Foot health is important. Wearing comfortable shoes with proper soles for a better part of the week is necessary, to avoid foot problems in the future.
FIRST THINGS FIRST.
Here’s what you should stop doing if you are doing this to your feet.
- Don’t wear very tight shoes.
- Don’t share shoes.
- Don’t shave calluses
- Don’t hide discolored nails with nail paints. Instead, treat the underlying issue.
- Don’t share your pedicure utensils with your pals.
- Give yourself regular foot massages.
Now, let’s talk about the to do’s
1. BUY SHOES THAT FIT YOU PERFECTLY.
Now, what does that mean?
- The ball of your foot should perfectly fit within the widest part of the shoe.
- There should be enough depth such that the top of the shoe does not rub with your toes.
- Walk around to see if you experience any sort of rubbing or slipping. If yes, you know what to do- get a different pair.
2. TREAT YOUR HEELS LIKE THEY COST A FORTUNE, HENCE WEAR THEM RARELY.
I agree that heels make our legs elongate, make us feel confident, but they make us sacrifice our health as well. Regularly wearing high heels can lead to back and hip pain, chronic knee. If you love wearing heels a lot, choose them wisely and try wearing less of them. If at all you are wearing a heel wear the ones with broad heels that increase the surface area contact between the ground and the shoe.
3. KEEP IT SMOOTH.
Soak your feet in the water or a foot bath first for 15 minutes, and then use a pumice stone or a foot file to remove calluses from damp heels. A warm foot bath made of black tea is often helpful in treating the thickened skin of the feet. It contains tannic acid, which is a natural antibacterial agent and lessens the chance of getting an athlete’s foot. Make the habit to use a pumice stone or foot file regularly. It will make your feet look good while wearing back open shoes.
4. MOISTURIZE WELL
Moisturizing foot scrubs made out of crushed fruit pits, sugar, or chemical exfoliators are quite helpful in removing dead skin. Look for foot care products with salicylic acid to soften tough calluses. If your heels are very dry and cracked, get them checked by a dermatologist or a podiatrist. If they aren’t that bad, there are plenty of moisturizing products available to soften tried heels. You might consider using some medicated heel pads first, to soften the calluses while you walk. Once the dried calluses are removed, apply rich foot creams or balms containing cocoa butter or shea butter. Creams rich in petroleum draw moisture to the skin.
5. APPLY SUNSCREEN
When you’re walking barefoot or wearing sandals, do not forget to apply sunscreen with at least a broad spectrum of SPF 30 on the top of your feet.
6. DO NOT IGNORE THE TOENAILS
Pedicures are bliss, aren’t they? But even those have techniques. Trimming your toes clumsily can lead to ingrown toenails or hangnails. So make sure you get the techniques correctly. Nails naturally become brittle through age due to the ingredients present in nail paints and nail removers. Manicurists often suggest using a polish that is free of formaldehyde, toluene, and dibutyl phthalate. They also recommend using nail removers that are free of alcohol. If you notice your nails getting dried, use cuticle cream, or petroleum jelly, or even a vitamin E oil. Put it over the entire nail, including the cuticle, and gently rub your toenails.
7. TREAT FUNGUS
Even though basic foot hygiene is the best way to prevent fungal infections, it is found quite common among people today. The antifungal foot care products that are available over-the-counter mainly work in case of mild athlete’s foot. They come in many forms such as lacquers, lotions, spray powders, spray liquids, and creams. Irrespective of the form all of them contain equally effective ingredients, i.e – terbinafine, tolnaftate, miconazole, ciclopirox, or clotrimazole. Dark and damp conditions are the main reasons for having an athlete’s feet, so make sure you wash your feet regularly and dry them, especially in between the toes. Wear fresh socks and hosiery.
If you keep these few tips in mind and take care of your feet through all the ages of your life, you’ll always have healthy feet.