Feet are one of the most sensitive parts of the body, with more than 7000 nerve endings on each foot, but we depend on them to support the weight of our entire bodies and keep us mobile, so it is essential to treat them well.
Feet are constantly exposed to dirt and perspiration, and though we can prevent moisture building up by choosing breathable footwear, hygiene will always be a priority for footcare. Feet need to be washed and dried regularly to prevent irritation and infection. Hardened skin can be removed from the soft parts of the foot with a foot file or pumice stone, or softened using a foot cream. Toenails should be kept trimmed, always cutting straight across rather than along a curve or angle, to prevent ingrowing.
Checking for Warning Signs
A regular foot cleaning is also a good chance to check for signs that your feet may need some extra care:
Putting Your Feet Up
Hard-working feet need to be rested, so you should see regular sit-down breaks as part of your footcare regimen during a long day. It is even better if you can elevate your feet for a while, but even if you have to keep going, you can still care for your feet by choosing the right shoes. Aching arches or tender soles can be prevented by choosing footwear with ergonomically shaped foam soles, while swollen feet can be accommodated by the flexibility of shoes with specially designed openings and velcro fastenings.
Footwear for Footcare
Problems are often caused by shoes that force the feet into unnatural positions, fail to provide sufficient support for the arches, or prevent the foot from moving properly. Choosing correctly fitted shoes and avoiding features such as unstable heels and pointed toes can protect feet from this sort of pressure. Many manufacturers design footwear that is intended to care for feet, so it is not necessary to put up with a shoe that is causing damage.