Cold feet are common in all age groups but become more problematic as we age due to a decrease in circulation. It’s almost a Canadian tradition to have cold feet in the winter. But cold feet can lead to chilblains and even frostbite. Let’s face it, cold feet are bothersome, troublesome and uncomfortable. If our feet are cold, then so are we!
What Causes Cold Feet?
Generally speaking, cold feet are a result of a constricting affect on blood vessels in our limbs, which will decrease the flow of blood to the hands and feet. When this happens, appendages may change colour, first white, and then if severe enough – blue, and be accompanied by feelings of burning, tingling, itching, numbness and pain. Ouch!
What you Can Do for Cold Feet
The best treatment for cold feet is prevention! Nevertheless, if you suspect there’s more going on under those socks, see your doctor or Chiropodist/Podiatrist for help.
How to Prevent Cold Feet
- Wear warm clothing. Keep your feet AND core warm by weather clothing that is appropriate for the temperature.
- Eat warm food. Not only is warm food comforting, it also requires less body energy to digest, leaving more energy to keep you warm.
- Exercise. Take a walk and promote better blood circulation to your feet.
- No smoking. Smoking affects your blood vessels just like the cold does. Smoking causes the blood vessels to constrict so that less blood (and warmth) goes down to your feet.
- Avoid coffee. The caffeine in coffee constricts blood vessels in the feet and legs, causing less blood and consequently warmth to get down to where it is needed. Try caffeine free tea or coffee containing flavonoids which help support blood vessel health.
- Give yourself a “time out.” Sit back, relax and soak your feet in warm water (never hot). Add your favourite foot soak and enjoy the moment. In no time you’ll have warm and “happy feet” again!
Taking proper care of your feet at every age and stage of life is important. See your Chiropodist/Podiatrist regularly for more helpful advice on good foot health!