Your feet are important to your physical and emotional well-being. The condition of your feet is an indicator of what is happening inside of your body.
Most people spend eighty percent of their waking hours on their feet. The 26 bones and joints in your feet are small but they can support you for your entire lifetime. So practicing proper foot care is necessary to keep feet healthy and strong. When you keep them healthy, they are less susceptible to injuries.
Some health issues that affect the feet include:
Athlete's Foot - This is a fungal infection of the skin on your feet. The first signs are tiny red blisters. After which they become dry and create cracks on your feet that itch.
What to do: Keep your feet clean and dry. Wear cotton socks that absorb moisture and discourage fungal growth. Antifungal powder or solution may help. If you do not see improvement after one week, contact your holistic healthcare practitioner.
Bunions - Misaligned joints result in swollen and tender areas on your feet. When the big toe is affected, an overgrowth of bone develops.
What to do: Wear special padding in your shoes to relieve the pressure on the feet when they come in contact with shoes. To reduce swelling, cortisone injections may help.
Corn and calluses - Hard, thickened skin that results from shoes rubbing or squeezing against the feet to produce a burning sensation. Corns are normally seen at the top of toes above a center joint or on the soles, heels, or balls of your foot.
What to do: Wear shoes that fit you properly to reduce the friction and pressure on the feet which causes corns and calluses. Surgical removal is necessary when the corns do not heal on their own.
Foot Cramps - Sudden and sharp pain in your feet. The frequency and severity of the pain may vary depending on the cause of the cramps. It is advised to visit your healthcare provider.
What to do: In cases of strained muscles in the feet, stretch the arch, and massage it until you feel relief.
Foot Strain - Fatigue or stress on the feet causes a dull and pulsating sensation. It is often characterized as a shadow pain and can be missed if you do not rest and check your feet.
What to do: Rest your feet and soak them in warm water. Massage them and wash them with Epsom salt. If the pain continues, visit your holistic health care provider.
Ingrown Toenail - Corners of the toenail get stuck in your skin. They begin to grow this way which causes pain - especially when shoes are worn or there is pressure on the toes.
What to do: Soak your toe in warm water. When you confront the issue early. You are less prone to infections. If the nails grow too deep into the toe, the problem has to be corrected surgically.
Onychomycosis (Toenail Fungus) - A fungal infection that occurs under the toenail and results in thickening of the nail.
What to do: Antifungal medication is needed immediately. See your doctor to get one prescribed.
Since the feet support your entire body, if you have any foot problems you may have serious health issues. It is advised to seek medical attention if your feet suffer from chronic infection, cramps, coldness, or any discoloration.
How to Care for Your Feet
Proper foot care includes foot and shoe maintenance as well as exercise. Here are suggestions on how to keep your feet healthy.
Keep your feet clean and dry -- wash your feet, and change your socks.
Air out your shoes to prevent fungal infections.
Rest and relax your feet every day. Lie back and elevate your feet for a few minutes. Give your feet a soothing massage with your fingers or roll your feet over a golf ball, tennis ball, or a rolling pin for a similar effect.
Exercise your feet to maintain blood circulation. Walking is best. Try taking brisk 30-minute walks five to seven times a week.
Check your feet regularly. Look for sores, cracked skin, and redness. Don't forget to inspect the areas between your toes.
Clip your toenails straight across, leaving nails a little longer than the tips of your toes to avoid ingrown toenails.
Wear shoes that are comfortable or use padding that supports your feet to prevent blisters or sores.
Treat all issues that you notice with your feet immediately.
What Do Problems with Your Feet Mean?
Your feet should be warm at night. If your feet are cold then this may affect your rest.
Always check your feet in the mirror. Look for cracks, cuts, and wounds. When wounds on the feet are not healing, this is an indication of digestive issues.
If you have an athlete's foot then this means you are eating too many processed foods, sugar, and oil.
If your feet cramp, this may be a sign of deficiency or stagnation of the blood.
Any pain in the bottom of your feet may indicate kidney issues.
Pain at the top of your feet may indicate stomach or liver issues.
Dry heels that do not respond to lotion indicate fluid imbalances.
Sweaty feet are indicative of numerous health issues depending on the feel, smell, volume, and occurrence of sweating.
We only get one pair of feet, we have a responsibility to check them, pamper them, and detox them when recommended by our Holistic Healthcare practitioners.