As the weather changes and it heats up we need to start caring for our feet differently. In summer we tend to start wearing open sandals, walk barefoot, spend time in the sun, swim more, and expose our feet to more fun!
Having more fun in the sun (or just living our lives during summer) can lead to a whole range of foot issues. Luckily here at ProMed we are well trained to help you out and keep you as pain free as possible.
The biggest summer care tip that I can give is the apply sunscreen all over your feet. We apply it everywhere else but we often forget our feet. The skin on our feet and our nails are just as prone to skin cancer as the rest of our body and need to be protected. As feet are something that you can often forget to check, skin cancer can go unnoticed until it is too late.
As we transition to open sandals our skin can dry out easier as we don’t have anything to help hold the moisture in our feet likes socks and shoes do. We also tend to walk barefoot more, or go swimming often, which can also dry our feet out. Walking barefoot can also lead to increased pressure areas, building up callous.
This can all become the perfect mixture for cracked heels!
My top tips for avoiding and caring for cracked heels include:
– Regular moisturisation. Something with urea in it will really help to boost hydration levels and prevent cracking.
– Reduce barefoot walking, especially outside on concrete or similar hard surfaces. This will reduce the pressure on your feet and reduce the amount of callous you are likely to develop.
– Wear closed in shoes when possible. In summer it is hard to be in shoes all the time, but wearing socks and shoes can really help prevent cracking. Having a pair that you wear around the house can make a big difference to foot health.
Blisters are a common problem we all know, and none of us love! Some ways to reduce your chance of blistering include:
– Don’t go for a long walk in new shoes. You need to give your shoes time to adjust to your feet, so a long walk straight out the gate can cause blistering.
– Avoid walking in shoes or sandals if your feet are wet or sandy. Sand is very course and can act like sandpaper when stuck between your shoe and your foot, causing blistering. Wet feet also cause blistering as it softens the skin and increases rubbing on your shoe.
We often see heel pain popping up in summer. Great ways to reduce your chances of flaring up heel pain include:
– Wear arch support sandals (or at least thongs). In winter it can be a lot easier for us to get the support we need when we are in enclosed shoes. A rapid switch from good supportive shoes to flat sandals can be a shock to our feet. Switching to a pair of sandals that have good arch support and fastening, or at the minimum a good pair of arch support thongs, can save your feet.
– Don’t forget your stretching! As we aren’t playing our winter sports anymore, we can forget to do our daily stretching. Taking a few minutes out of each day to stretching your legs and feet can make a big difference in preventing heel pain.
– Avoid barefoot walking on hard sand or concrete. Hard sand can be just as hard as concrete and put a lot of stress on our feet and legs, causing heel pain. If you are going on a walk, make sure to put a good pair of runners to help protect your feet.
Our nails can change as we transition into summer and need a different type of care.
– You might need to reduce the time between nail cutting. Our nails can grow faster in summer compared to winter. If you’re used to cutting them every 8 weeks you might find you need to take it down to 6 or 7 weeks to prevent issues.
– Our nails can dry out over summer. Using a nail oil regularly can be a big help in keeping them hydrated and preventing splitting. Nail oil is simple to massage in each day after you moisturise your feet, you can even use the readily available coconut oil if you have some in the house.
We hope these tips help you to keep your feet happy and healthy!