The sun is shining, temperatures are on the rise, and we’re opting to liberate our feet from socks and closed-in footwear in favour of airy summer sandals and light-weight shoes. But – did you know that summer footwear combined with warmer weather and less attention to the feet can be a recipe for cracked heels, blisters, crops of new corns and calluses, outbreaks of athlete’s foot and a myriad of other painful problems?
Enlist in our Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp and your feet will be healthy and happy recruits all summer long!
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #1
Beware going bare! Being barefoot is a natural part of summer and does have its advantages over short periods of time, but it is never recommended for outside the home. And if you are diabetic, it is never recommended period. There are far too many hazards in our environment to risk walking or running barefoot. Too often injuries occur from punctures, cuts and scrapes. Being barefoot may have been great for the apes – but their feet never wore shoes and never felt shards of glass!
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #2
Save the flip flops for the pool. Flip flops are THE worst footwear for anything other than poolside. Yes, they help protect your feet from fungus and other nasty bugs growing on pool decks, but that’s where their protection ends. Flip flops can’t provide support or shock absorption because there is nothing to them. We regularly see strains, sprains and fractures because of flip flops. Look for alternatives in sandals mimicking a thong but with added arch support and a padded sole. Still not convinced? Put on your flip flops and look down at your toes as you walk. Those poor little things are curling because they’re trying to get a grip!
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #3
Change it up! Wearing the same footwear can abrade the skin and raise blisters where delicate skin meets dutiful straps. Give your feet a healing break by alternating your choice of footwear daily.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #4
Salute fashion before comfort on special occasions rather than every day. We know how important it is to wear those killer shoes, but remember – they’re slowly murdering your feet. Think quality time not quantity.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #5
Combat cracked heels and calluses with care, daily. It takes 28 days to create a new habit. Every night before bed, massage a good skin cream into problem areas and soon you’ll be able to declare victory on de feet.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #6
Beware the Pedicure. While a pedicure is a wonderful treat for the feet, it comes with risks. We always recommend you ASK about sterilization procedures and watch what happens after other clients leave. Does the next client immediately sit down or is there a period for cleaning and sterilizing that takes place? We strongly suggest you play it pedicure-safe. Take your own tool kit as well as base, colour and top coat with you. Pedicures that are light on the pocketbook can be extremely heavy on foot health should an infection or fungus set in. Last point, anything that involves cutting skin (shaving calluses, trimming cuticles) should be left to a medical professional.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #7
Sandal and shoe shop at the right time. The higher the temperature, the more feet tend to swell. Mid-afternoon is typically when feet are largest and that makes it the best time to duck inside a store to cool off and try on new footwear.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #8
Sandals + Orthotics = Happy Feet! There was a time when orthotics wouldn’t fit into sandals and other summer shoes. But no more! A number of fashionable and functional sandals are made with removable foot beds so you can slip your orthotics in. Rejoice!
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #9
There’s fungus among us! Fungus is an infection and should be dealt with quickly and effectively with aggressive remedies. Avoid trying to cover up cloudy nails – deal with them and get professional care.
Footcare/Footwear Boot Camp – Drill #10
Declare war on damp, sweaty feet. Not only can damp and sweaty feet produce an odour like no other, they are also the perfect breeding ground for a variety of common conditions such as athlete’s foot, nail fungus, and plantar warts. Try rolling on a liquid antiperspirant to reduce moisture. Avoid sprinkling powder in your shoes and sandals. Mixing a powder with perspiration will create a paste.
Bonus Boot Camp – Drill #10.5
Enjoy the thrill of the chill! Dunking hot feet in cool water for 10-15 minutes not only contributes to foot health – it also cools you down and relaxes you.
See your Chiropodist regularly throughout the summer. Enjoy the season and remember to wear your sunscreen – even on the tops of your feet!