With all the pressures of modern life being thrown at us, we are neglecting ourselves by not following the beauty regimes our parents and grandparent followed. Not many people take the time to moisturise their bodies after taking a shower let alone remembering to look after their feet. I take a look at the most common foot related problems today.
- The most researched foot related problem is skin. Whether suffering from dry skin, rough or hard skin or flaky skin these are what most people complain about to their doctors and chemists. The answer is simple, if you take the time to moisturise your feet at least once a day and use a foot spa once a week you should soon find that all foot skin problems will disappear. I have also recently bought foot socks; all you need to do is apply your favourite foot cream and wear the socks which will keep your feet moisturised and soft.
- Most people think that the solution to fungal toenails is to wear socks and pretend it will go away. This is not the case and by leaving fungal toenails you may make the problem worse rather than better. Most people won’t go to see their doctor because of embarrassment; you can get treatment for fungal toenails from your local chemist. This can come in the form of a cream or nail application that will slowly whiten the nail.
- Ingrown toenails are also a common complaint. This condition can also be inherited but the probabilities of ingrown toenails are higher if toenails are not cut properly or by wearing shoes that are too tight. If you leave an ingrown toenail, the toe (usually the big toe) will swell up causing pain and difficulties in walking. Developing an infection is also higher and can result in pus oozing out of the swelling. If you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, then seek medical help – you will be advised to see a Podiatrist who will treat you.
- Most women complain their partners have smelly feet but don’t actually do anything about it. I understand that this is a very embarrassing foot problem but seeking help is better than doing nothing. There are many over the counter products for people who have smelly feet. Speak to the pharmacist before buying any products as they will be able to also advise you on the best one for your circumstances. There are a few things you can do to prevent smelly feet but I do understand that these solutions are not practical for everyone. Smelly feet occur usually because you’re a shoe wearer so by wearing socks all day the sweat gets absorbed by the shoe causing odours. When you go home and take off your shoes try to let them air out between wears. Change socks regularly and soak feet once a week.
- Veruccas are related to the HPV virus – they come in the form of a wart or a cluster of warts. The best thing to do when you have a verucca is to keep feet dry as this is how verucca’s are caught and spread. Try not to share socks or shoes and don’t pick it. They say not to do anything as they will go away eventually but this can take up to two years. The most effective way of removing veruccass are freezing them. You used to have to go to your GP to get referred to a hospital or health centre for treatment but now you can get treatment for veruccas from the chemist.
- There are a small minority of people who are born with flat feet; this means they have no arch on sole of the feet. To correct this problem insoles with a built in arch are usually custom made for the patient. Usually a referral from your GP is needed for an orthopaedic doctor to make custom made insoles for you but nowadays you can purchase them from shoe shops and sports shops. Although not custom made they do the same job as going to see an orthopaedic doctor but without the yearly checkups.
If you have any of the above foot related problems, then seek medical advice from your doctor who may be able to help you. It might also be cheaper to speak to your local pharmacy first if you have to pay for prescriptions as it currently costs £7.20. So buying medicines over the counter may be cheaper than going to the GP.