Canyon Oaks Foot & Ankle

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Foot Hygiene: How to Keep Your Feet Clean

A guide to Foot Health and foot hygiene, such as yoga for foot pain

Few things crinkle the nose like the smell of stinky feet. Still, the bacteria on feet that make them stink can do worse than cause an unpleasant stench. Foot bacteria can also lead to more serious problems, including fungal infections, such as athlete’s foot or fungal nails

Practicing good foot hygiene is key to promoting overall foot health. This is especially true if you have a foot wound or underlying health problems such as psoriasis or diabetes, which puts your feet at an increased risk of infection. 

Canyon Oaks Foot & Ankle is here with some basic tips for keeping your feet clean and healthy. 

Foot Hygiene Tip #1: Wash Your Feet Daily

A simple, daily wash with soap, warm water, and a washcloth will go a long way in maintaining foot health. Don’t forget to wash between the toes! 

To take your routine to the next level, try soaking your feet. 

Cleveland Clinic reports that “Thoroughly cleaning your feet is more than rinsing them in a quick shower.” The Clinic’s podiatrist on staff, Doctor Rowland “recommends soaking your feet in a mixture of vinegar and water or Epsom salt and water.” 

A weekly foot soak for 10-20 minutes while you’re watching TV can help discourage bacteria growth, and works to ward off infection caused by problems like ingrown toenails

Beyond the bath, try to knock down calluses and sluff off dead skin with a pumice stone. 

It’s also a good idea to keep your shoes clean, inside and out. Kill bacteria with a disinfectant spray.

Keep Your Feet Dry & Change Your Socks

Whenever you finish washing your feet, it’s crucial to dry them thoroughly, especially between the toes. 

“You can apply lotion, but don’t put it between the toes because it can cause skin or tissue breakdown and ulceration,” says Piedmont Healthcare

Since bacteria thrive on hot, sweaty feet in dark, damp shoes, it’s key to keep your feet dry. Granted, it’s tough when you’re an active person or your feet are just prone to sweat. 

Your choice in footwear plays an important part. Wear non-synthetic, moisture-wicking socks, and bring a spare pair with you so you can swap them out midday. Invest in well-fitting, breathable footwear, springing for leather or other natural materials, when possible. 

Trim Your Toenails

Depending on how fast your toenails grow, giving them a trim about twice a month should suffice. 

To prevent ingrown toenails from developing, cut the nails straight across. Avoid curving them or cutting them too short, as this could cause pain. Use an emery board to smooth out rough spots around the edges so you do not scratch yourself and your toenails do not snag on anything.

“Do not attempt to cut your own toenails if you have trouble reaching them, cannot see them well, or if you have diabetes and/or neuropathy (loss of sensation in the feet), peripheral vascular disease or other circulatory issues in the feet and legs,” advises the Institute for Preventive Foot Health, adding that in this case, it is prudent to visit a podiatrist

Remember to sanitize your toenail trimmers before and after use. 

Footcare Health Professional in Fresno 

While going about your foot hygiene routine, don’t forget to check them for any irregularities. If you notice a problem with your foot, do not ignore it. Whether the problem is on the skin or something deeper, schedule an appointment at one of our podiatric clinics in Fresno, Visalia, or Porterville for a check-up. 

Our team of professional foot and ankle doctors has been compassionately serving the Central Valley since 1997. Let us get you on the road to happy feet.

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