Solutions for 5 summer foot problems
With the warmer weather we tend to see certain foot problems more regularly in clinic. Read on for advice about typical summer foot problems.
1. Sunburned feet
An obvious hazard, yet we commonly forget to protect our feet. Anyone who's experienced sunburned feet knows it’s no joke!
Apply suncream to your feet regularly and if it’s too late, use aftersun or aloe vera which is great for relieving sunburn.
2. Swollen feet
Warm weather and humid conditions can lead to swollen feet. The last thing you need when spending the day by the pool!
If you suffer with swollen feet, try to limit your salt intake, drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, and go for a walk or swim to increase blood flow. Pop your feet up several times a day to help move fluids away from your feet and lower legs.
3. Dry skin & cracked heels
Sweating can deplete the skin of moisture. Additionally, feet are more exposed to the elements when wearing sandals in summer months. This is a recipe for dry skin and cracked heels.
Use an exfoliant or foot file once a week and apply a foot cream daily. Choose cream containing Urea. Urea is found in the skin as a natural moisturising factor. It draws moisture to the surface layers and slows the loss of moisture. At higher concentrations it also has exfoliating properties.
4. Sweat & odour
Sweaty, stinky feet are a common problem in the summer, especially in active people. Besides the potential embarrassment, it can also make you more prone to infections.
The smell is not the sweat; it is caused by bacteria which thrives in the inviting environment the damp skin and shoes produce.
Use an antibacterial soap daily and dry the feet thoroughly, especially between the toes. Wear clean, moisture wicking socks such as sports socks or bamboo. Avoid pure cotton socks as they hold moisture. Rotating shoe wear allows the inside to completely dry out between wear.
5. Painful feet
Our body becomes used to the conditions we subject it to daily. If we suddenly do something differently, the muscles must adapt to the new conditions which can put them under strain.
This is no different for our feet. In summer we suddenly change from wearing more sturdy shoes or boots to wearing flimsy sandals, sliders or flipflops. This means your feet have to work harder.
Look for sandals with comfortable soles and a fastening around the ankle to help prevent the foot having to grip to keep the shoe on.
Save flipflops for around the pool! Check out brands such as Vionic, Calla, Joya and Jungla for sandals and shoes your feet will thank you for.