14 Oct Cold Weather Leading to Dry, Cracked Feet? Not Anymore!
Your Winter Footcare Survival Guide.
When the weather gets dry, so can your feet. Embarrassed to take your socks off? Wishing your feet could hibernate all winter? You are not alone.
Dry, scaly or cracked feet are common complaints during the cold months. Sometimes it feels as though our heels are like velcro when removing our socks. Even worse is the “foot dandruff” we see on our black socks and slippers!
Take the following steps to better foot health this winter:
1. Moisturize Daily.
Of the naturally occurring moisturizers in our skin, one called “Urea” is vital. It is no surprise then, that foot specialists recommend a moisturizer with urea to combat dry skin and eczema. It is colourless, odourless and non-toxic. The amount of urea (%) in a product is crucial. Too much is not a good thing and too little is a waste of money.
We recommend reliable products such as Footlogix, a Canadian Pediceutical line that is sold at BioPed. Footlogix has a Very Dry Skin formula with the perfect amount of urea in it. It is also a foam moisturizer, ensuring that it goes on where it’s needed and absorbs quickly to prevent waste. The best part? No greasy residue and it is safe for everyone to use; including diabetic patients.
2. Avoid shoes/boots that are not waterproof.
What happens when our feet and socks stay wet in our shoes and boots? The damp, dark environment allows for the overgrowth of fungal and bacterial pathogens. This could result in an unwanted foot infection. Did you know that a fungal foot infection of the skin can look exactly like dry skin? See #3 for details.
3. Seek professional consulting if your feet are itchy, red or flaking.
While foot infections can sometimes be blatantly obvious, it can also be commonly missed, even by a medical professional who does not specialize in the foot. Despite daily moisturizing, if you find that your feet are dry, red, flaking or itchy, it’s time to visit a BioPed foot specialist.
Footlogix carries a Rough Skin formula that packs a punch with both urea for dryness and an anti-fungal agent to rid your foot of bacteria.
4. Wear the right sized shoes and socks.
Did you know that wearing shoes, boots or socks that are too large or too small, can lead to calluses and blisters? While the average callus and blister may just be a pain (literally!) for most, it can be deadly for some. In patients whose immune system is compromised, such as diabetics, the increased pressure from a callus, or skin breakage from a blister, can cause a non-healing wound. Non-healing wounds can lead to further complications, such as a blood infection or amputation. For a proper fit, ask your BioPed Pedorthist to assess your current footwear or make a professional recommendation for new winter footgear.
5. Inspect your feet for cracks or other openings.
Cracks and other openings are portals of entry for viruses, bacteria or fungi. Don’t give these unwanted visitors any access – moisturize daily and use a foot file regularly.
Footlogix Cracked Heel formula will help heal these cracks and openings, thanks to a higher percentage of urea, which is appropriate for this condition.
6. Use a safe foot file that doesn’t look like a cheese grater.
Do your feet cringe at the sight of a cheese grater-like foot file? So do ours! Using a foot file on your feet after a shower or bath can be a great way to avoid thick calluses or cracks. However, if the file has sharp teeth, it is putting you at risk for cuts or scrapes. The goal is to remove the old, dead skin but leave the healthy layer in tact to protect us from infection. You can accomplish this by using a more moderate file, such as the one offered by Footlogix.
7. Avoid pedicures at spas that do not practice medical sterilization of tools.
Not every spa uses a steam sterilizer to clean their instruments. While a pedicure mid-winter can help remove dry skin and calluses, it is not worth getting sick over (some viruses can live on a surface for over a month!). Do your research before booking an appointment, ask to see their sterilizer or bring your own equipment.
8. Visit a Chiropodist at least once this winter. Twice if you are diabetic.
Chiropodists are medical foot specialists that are regulated by the government. They remove warts, corns, calluses and dry skin. They can also diagnose a foot infection and prescribe medication to eradicate it. All BioPed Chiropodists sterilize their instruments using medical grade sterilizers. Visit us with confidence for all your foot skin and nail care needs