Let’s face it, our feet are indeed one of the most overworked and under-tended parts of our body. Especially in the case of us men, foot care is the last thing on our mind. Unless something serious happens, we aren’t really bothered about taking care of our feet. This kind of attitude does eventually lead to a lot of foot problems that can otherwise be easily avoided by maintaining basic foot hygiene.
Following are some foot care tips that can help to protect your feet from infections as well as keep them healthy years down the line.
Cut Your Toenails Properly
You may be trimming your toenails regularly but make sure you do it correctly. Cutting them in an improper way can cause the nails to grow in an unnatural or crooked manner. Unknowingly clipping the nails too short can lead to inward toenail growth, a condition in which the edges of a nail bend and penetrate into the skin as it grows. As a result, the edges of the nail become red, swollen, and painful. Also, long nails are prone to damage as they have a tendency to split and break. So, one should shun the habit of keeping long nails and trim them whenever needed.
Also, many people have the wrong habit of cutting their cuticles, which can increase the risk of infections and nail problems. Instead, take care of your cuticles by applying cuticle oil. This will make the cuticles soft and supple. Applying Vaseline can also help to soften the nails, making it easier to trim them.
Wash Your Feet Everyday
When having a bath, we often forget to wash the most frequently used part of the body-the feet. We often use expensive soaps and lotions to ensure our skin is soft, smooth, and well hydrated. In this process, we tend to ignore foot hygiene, making way for dirty, smelly feet. Washing your feet daily with soap is an integral part of personal hygiene. The spaces between toes are breeding grounds of dirt, bacteria, and bad smell. Hence, foot hygiene is a matter of great importance and cannot be overlooked.
Pat Your Feet Dry
Wet or moist feet attract bacteria, fungi, and other pathogens, which can cause a wide range of infections including athlete’s foot. So, once you wash your feet or visit damp places barefoot, it is necessary to dry them thoroughly. Pat your feet dry with a towel. Make sure your towel reaches the spaces in between the toes.
Use a Foot Moisturizing Cream
Rough, scaly feet are indicative of uncared for feet. In order to get relief from dry feet, massaging with a foot moisturizing cream is recommended. Applying an appropriate moisturizer daily can work wonders to soften dry feet. Before using a moisturizer, firstly immerse your feet in moderately hot water for 10-15 minutes. Then rub your feet gently with a pumice stone to remove dead skin cells. Once it is done, wash your feet with warm water, pat dry with a towel, and apply a foot moisturizer. Practice this foot care routine daily and you will soon notice your feet looking healthier and smoother.
Choose the Right Shoe Size
Choosing proper shoes is extremely important to keep foot problems at bay. Wearing wrong size footwear all day long can cause heel pain that can last for weeks. Also, ill-fitting shoes increase the chances of developing calluses and ulcers on the feet. People who wear shoes that are not roomy and have a small toe box are at increased risk of hammer toes. So, buying comfortable shoes that come with a large toe box and extra depth is necessary to keep feet healthy.
Also, buy shoes that provide adequate support to your foot arches. The design should be such that it gives a great deal of cushioning and shock absorption. Inserting insoles is also helpful as it adds padding, which protects your feet from shoe rubbing.