12 Easy Ways to Make - and Keep - Your Feet Happy
Your feet are the foundation for your body and, in many ways, your life. When your feet feel good, you feel good. When your feet are well supported, your entire body – your ankles, knees, hips, back, and even your neck – feel better. And when happy feet lead to a happy body, it is easy to do the things your love with the people you love.
That’s why we’ve created this short “cheat sheet” with 12 easy ways to make – and keep – your feet happy.
- Keep them clean. Scrub feet thoroughly when you bath or shower, then dry carefully – especially between your toes. Damp skin is an invitation to fungal infections.
- Keep them safe. If you spend time at the gym, the pool or in a locker room, be sure to protect your feet with shower shoes. Places like that, no matter how nice they may look, tend to be breeding grounds for fungal infections.
- Don’t go barefoot. Doing without shoes puts you at seriously increased risk for injuries, infection, and other problems.
- Don’t skimp on shoes. It’s easy to shop shoes by price, but support is what really matters. Saving a few bucks on a cheap pair of shoes that doesn’t provide proper support can lead to serious foot, ankle, knee and back pain down the road.
- Check them out. While you’re drying your feet. check them for scaling or peeling areas that could be the start of Athlete’s Foot, and discolored nails that could signal a nail fungus
- Choose the right shoes. Matching your shoes to your activities just makes sense. For example, choose walking or running shoes for exercise - not court shoes or casual.
- Cut nails right. That means cutting straight across and being careful not to round the corners or cut too close to the skin. Any of those mistakes can invite ingrown toenails.
- Ditch worn footwear. Shoes that are worn out can cause all sorts of problems, from blisters and funguses to plantar fasciitis and tendonitis.
- Don’t hide unsightly nails. Yes, it’s tempting to cover discolored or deformed nails with polish. But problem nails could have a nail fungus, and covering them with polish could make things worse.
- Get regular checkups. Just like every part of your body, your feet change as you get older. The new pain in your knee or kink in your neck may be nothing more than a simple biological change in how your feet bear the weight of your body.
- Keep them dry. Feet sweat a lot, creating a perfect place for bacteria and funguses to grow. To keep them dryer, avoid cotton and nylon socks (no matter how much you love natural fibers) and go with synthetics that wick away moisture.
- Change shoes daily. Changing your shoes every day can give them a chance to dry out between wearings – bad news for bacteria, but good news for your feet.