Did you know that by age 50, you have already walked nearly 75,000 miles? Well, that is a lot of distance, isn’t it?
Your feet and ankles carry the entire weight of your body. Also, they are the ones that come in contact with different surfaces you tread on – if you are not wearing your shoes or socks.
So it is no wonder that they experience the most wear and tear.
If you read this report, you will find that around 8 out of 10 Americans face foot problems.
So, it is high time that you focus on your foot and ankle health. In this article, we will share some expert tips on sole support and maintaining healthy feet.
Choosing the Right Shoes
Now you must be thinking, this is common knowledge. However, there’s a lot more to it.
If you want to prevent foot injuries and maintain healthy feet, you must choose the right pair of shoes. How will they help you? Your feet will get support, cushioning, stability, and ultimate protection.
On the other hand, ill-fitted shoes can lead you to encounter several problems like calluses, blisters, bunions, and even stress fractures or plantar fasciitis.
Tips For Selecting Well-Fitted Shoes
Now that you know why you should never compromise on your perfect pair of footwear, here is a list of tips that you must follow while buying a new one.
- Get a Professional Fitting: Contact a physical therapist or a podiatrist. They can suggest the correct shoe size and fit for your feet.
- Consider Your Activities: Always buy different footwear for your various activities. For running, hiking, or walking, you should purchase different types of shoes. They should never coincide. Your footwear for training or the gym should also be distinct.
- Allow Room for Movement: Ensure there is enough room (1 to 1.5 cm) at the end of the shoe to accommodate free foot movement.
- Look for Arch Support: Always buy shoes with arch support. It will help you maintain correct alignment and prevent discomfort. You will also get adequate support if you have flat feet.
- Try Orthotics If Required: Many people have specific foot conditions or biomechanical issues. If you have similar issues, consult a professional – they can suggest correct orthotic inserts for added support.
For orthotic inserts, we recommend that you get in touch with Dr. Lanier‘s Cutting-Edge Foot and Ankle Clinic. She is a foot and ankle specialist and is well-known across Tennessee and areas near Nashville.
She is especially renowned for treating all types of foot and ankle-related conditions, heel pain, skin conditions, and plantar warts.
Maintaining Proper Hygiene
Want to sport healthy feet and ankles? Well, there’s nothing better than maintaining proper foot hygiene. The first step to healthy feet is to keep your toes and their gaps clean.
You must be wondering why. Well, the areas between your toes are warm and moist, making them the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and fungus.
When you are deep cleaning between the toes, you remove any accumulated bacteria, sweat, or dirt, which might have led to infectious diseases, and give you athlete’s foot.
Recommended Technique For Washing Your Feet
If you think that washing your feet is a no-brainer, then you are clearly mistaken. Try following this list of steps that experts recommend for cleaning your feet.
- Start by wetting your ankle and feet with lukewarm water.
- Use a mild foot cleanser and a washcloth or sponge to gently scrub the feet and take special care for your toe-gaps.
- You must properly clean your heels and soles.
- Once you are done, rinse your feet thoroughly with warm water and then pat them dry using a clean towel.
Suitable Methods For Drying Feet
Again, drying your feet isn’t as straightforward as it seems. Here is a list of suitable methods recommended by doctors for drying your feet.
- Gently rub your feet and dry them with a clean towel. Reach between your toes.
- Before you put on socks and shoes, allow your feet to air dry for 5 minutes.
- If you are in a hurry, you can use a hair dryer on a low heat setting to dry your feet.
- Buy moisture-wicking socks or slippers to absorb excess moisture.
- You can also use talcum powder or doctor-recommended foot powder as well and keep your feet dry.
What’s the next important thing to keep your feet healthy and shining? Yes, you guessed it right – it’s proper nail care.
Cutting toenails reduces the chances of fungal infections in your feet and prevents ingrown toenails. Properly trimming your toenails minimizes discomfort, improves foot hygiene, and also prevents damage to shoes and socks.
Recommended Practices For Toenail Trimming
Your nail care isn’t complete without these recommended practices. Check them out.
- Never Cut Nails Deep: Avoid trimming your toenails too short. Cutting your toenails deep and close to your skin increases the risk of ingrown toenails.
- Keep Them Clean: Before trimming your nails, you must clean the nail clipper and your hands with alcohol or soap and water to reduce the risk of infection.
- Filling: Once you are done trimming, use a nail file to smooth out rough edges.
Ensuring Proper Shoe Fit
While buying footwear, you must avoid shoe models that can rub or pinch your feet. Avoid footwear with narrow-toe boxes, stiff material, and high heels. Always buy shoes that offer ample toe space and can accommodate the natural structure of your foot.
Tips For Finding Properly Fitting Shoes
Yes, we understand that finding the perfect pair of footwear can feel like a daunting task. That’s why, we have some cards up our sleeve to help you find shoes with the ideal fit.
- Use a measuring tape or visit a shoe store to find the exact measurement of your feet. This will ensure that the footwear perfectly fits your feet and ankle.
- Pay close attention to the size of your feet. Some people have one foot larger than the other, so it is important to find shoes that fit you comfortably.
- Once you have selected a shoe, wear it and walk around the place to feel the fit and comfort.
- Make sure there is half an inch of space between your longest toe and the tip of the shoe. This allows your foot to move freely when you walk or run.
Promoting Blood Circulation
Proper blood circulation is important for your foot health as it ensures an adequate supply of oxygen and nutrients to the cell in the feet and ankle. Smooth blood circulation prevents cramping, pain, and gangrene and also promotes healthy skin.
Consequently, poor blood circulation can lead to swelling, numbness, slow healing, and discoloration of your feet.
Tips For Improving Blood Circulation In The Feet
Follow these tips carefully for improving blood circulation in your feet.
- Keep Moving: Stay active and do not sit or stand for a prolonged time. Try walking, jogging, swimming, and cycling.
- Elevate Your Legs: Whenever you get time, elevate your legs to avoid swelling and improve blood circulation. You can prop them up with a pillow or footrest.
- Wear Comfortable Footwear: Buy footwear that fits well; do not wear tight or restrictive shoes that can prevent smooth blood circulation.
- Try Foot Exercises: Rotate and flex your ankles, point and massage your toes and also perform calf stretches. This will improve blood circulation.
- Massage Your Feet: Get a foot massage from a professional or use a massage gun. These methods can stimulate blood flow and relax your feet muscles.
Taking proper care of your feet and ankles is crucial for maintaining foot health and preventing serious bodily injuries. By wearing well-fitted shoes and seeking professional guidance, you can minimize the risk of injuries or permanent damage.
Healthy feet will take you far- so why not give them the sole support they deserve?
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