02E85096If you’ve never had foot problems, then you probably take your feet for granted. We walk on them all day, applying our full body weight to their soles. Blood and lymph circulate through our feet, and our feet contain multiple bones and joints. All of this information leads to one notion: keeping your feet healthy is a wise idea. If you want to keep your feet healthy, here are five strategies you might not be aware of.

1. Physical Inspection

By taking a look at your feet, you can learn a lot about their condition. Diabetics should inspect their feet every day, because diabetes often leads to sometimes devastating foot conditions. When you check your feet, look at your toenails. Any discoloration could be a sign of fungus. Take a look between your toes and on the soles of your feet. Peeling skin could also be a sign of fungus.

2. Don’t Just Make Them Pretty

Covering ugly nails with polish might not be taking care of the root cause of discoloration or cracks. If your nails have become unusually thick or if they have cracks or have changed color, then you could have an underlying fungus. Trim your nails, but make sure to do it correctly. You should always trim straight across; rounding the nails or cutting too close to the skin can cause painful ingrown toenails.

3. Choose the Right Footwear

Keeping your feet healthy entails dressing them properly. Start by using absorbent socks that will wick away sweat and keep your feet dry. When it comes to shoes, you should choose something that will allow maximum circulation. Leather shoes are a popular choice because they allow ventilation. Shoes with mesh fabrics are also a great choice. In addition, make sure you are wearing properly fitting shoes. Tight shoes can cause problems, such as ingrown toenails, calluses, and cramps.

4. Keep Your Feet Dry

Fungus and bacteria love damp, humid spaces, and sweaty feet provide a perfect breeding ground for these unwanted guests. After you take a bath or shower, make sure to dry your feet thoroughly. Then, as mentioned above, use absorbent socks and footwear that will breathe.

5. Protect Your Feet

If you share a shower with someone else, consider shower shoes. Using a shower at the gym or even in a hotel can lead to Athlete’s Foot. Public pools and locker rooms are also hotbeds for the fungus that causes Athlete’s Foot. In addition, avoid sharing footwear with others. Socks and shoes that are shared quickly make it easy to pass Athlete’s Foot from one person to another. Wearing your own footwear will ensure that your feet stay healthy.

We don’t often consider the health of our feet, but a few strategies will ensure that your feet remain healthy. If you think something is amiss, go see your doctor. In the meantime, use the strategies above for keeping your feet healthy.