Skin care for your feet

In Conditions, FAQs, Foot Facts, Services by Alnoor Ladhani, Chiropodist

Your feet need a good skin care routine too in order to keep the skin soft and prevent drying and cracking.

There are also a few simple rules to follow to help prevent injuries and infections that feet are commonly affected by.

Skin care for cracks, callouses, and corns

The skin on your feet can dry out easily and as a result can develop cracks, callouses, and corns.  These common skin problems can become painful and can lead to cuts that let infection in.

In order to prevent dry skin, apply a thick, creamy moisturizer specifically meant for feet.  They tend to be heavier and richer than regular body or hand lotion.  Products with milk or fruit juices contain natural acids that gently dissolve dry, rough patches.  Or, just rub plain old petroleum jelly into your feet.

Be careful about using moisturizers between the toes, though.  This can lead to too much moisture in an area that doesn’t tend to dry out as easily, which can encourage fungal growth.

While in the shower, you can also use a pumice stone to exfoliate dry skin and smooth down callouses.  Don’t use a razor, nail clippers, or other way of cutting your corns or callouses as it is too easy to cut to deep and cause an infection.

If you are bothered by cracks, callouses, or corns that are becoming painful, or which you think have become infected, see a chiropodist/podiatrist for treatment.

Skin care at the gym – how to avoid plantar warts

Image of flip-flops

Warts can grow anywhere on your body, and are often painless.  Plantar warts, however, grow on the soles of your feet, also known as the plantar surface.  Since you walk on them, they grow inward instead of outward towards the surface like other warts.  Warts are different than a callous.  A callous is just a thickening of the skin, while a wart is caused by a virus – human papilloma virus or HPV.

HPV is usually found in wet areas such as locker rooms, showers, at the gym, or poolside.  You are more likely to be infected where you have a wound to the skin, even if it’s just a small scrape or a hangnail.  You can reduce your chances of developing plantar warts by wearing sandals, flip flops, or swimming shoes in the locker room showers, on deck at the pool, or in other moist areas where HPV thrives.

The virus is contagious, so it is important to get treatment so you avoid re-infecting yourself or infecting other people.  If you look closely at the wart, you should be able to see tiny dark specks that differentiate them from a simple callous.

Plantar wart treatment can be very simple and fairly pain free.  For stubborn cases, wart surgical laser treatment is also available.  See a chiropodist/podiatrist for quick, effective treatment of plantar warts.

At Step by Step Professional Family Foot Care, we offer a variety of skin care and treatment options for your feet.  Your problems with dry, cracked skin, callouses and corns, and common warts or plantar warts are no problem for us!  Call today to find out how we can help your skin heal and stay healthy.

You can also find more quick, simple tips on basic foot care in our post called Do you have healthy feet?

A warning about suspicious growths

Important: as noted by the Canadian Podiatric Medical Association (CPMA), you should get any differences on your skin checked.  What look like plantar warts or other skin infections might actually be signs of cancer.