Common Foot Problems…and what to do about them
- Warts: Common warts, which can appear anywhere on the body, are rough little bumps. Plantar warts, which occur on the bottom of the feet, are typically hard, flat, and rough. All warts are caused by a virus. Warts aren’t harmful, but they can be uncomfortable and unsightly. If you have warts on your feet, keep your feet clean and dry because viruses flourish in dark, wet environments.
- Sweaty, smelly feet: You can cut down on odors by keeping your feet clean and dry at all times. Rubbing powder on the bottom of your feet before putting on your socks and shoes can help too. If possible, let shoes air out for 24 hours before wearing them again. Podiatrists can help with this embarrassing problem.
- Ingrown toenails: Symptoms of an ingrown toenail include redness, swelling, and tenderness around the nail. Sometimes you can even see the nail digging directly into the toe. Try soaking the affected foot in lukewarm water and Epsom salts for 20 minutes three or four times a day. If the redness and pain doesn’t improve after a couple days, a podiatrist can easily treat ingrown toenails.
- Athlete’s foot: Athlete’s foot, an itchy foot condition that causes the skin to flake and peel, is caused by a fungus. Keeping your feet clean and dry can help. So can over-the-counter athlete’s foot medication. Just be sure to use the medication until the fungus is completely gone. With current medications, two to three weeks of treatment may be enough to treat athlete’s foot fungus. Stubborn cases of athlete’s foot may require a doctor’s care.
APMA has launched the myFEET campaign during April’s Foot Health Awareness Month to emphasize the importance of foot health to teens. To see the full results of the survey, visit www.apma.org/teen-feet-survey
It doesn’t hurt to point out that people of all ages should take care of their feet.
Source: American Podiatric Medical Association
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