Winter has finally arrived for everyone in the Chicagoland area, and now is the time to take special care to maintain healthy feet through this bad weather. Here are my five tips to help everyone maintain optimal foot health:
1. You shoes and/or boots are important.
The best way to protect your feet during winter is to make sure you have good shoes. The most important detail is that your shoes should be waterproof to protect against snow. Shoes that have good treading can help grip the ground better to prevent against dangerous falls.
2. Not only are your shoes important, but so are your socks.
Shoes help to keep your feet dry from outside moisture, but socks are a great way to keep your feet dry from the inside of your shoe. The best approach to keep your feet dry is to wear two layers of socks, the inside layer being a thin sock to remove moisture from your feet and a second, heavier layer to further keep moisture from building up inside your shoe.
3. Keep your feet moist.
During winter perhaps the most common problem that occurs to your feet is the drying of your skin. Be sure to use lotion or other moisturizers daily to make sure that your skin does not dry, crack, and possibly bleed. Any of these can lead to serious foot infections that are easy to avoid.
4. While walking outside, take extra care.
With the cold weather also comes ice. Just as there is “black ice” on roads that is hard to see, the same is true on sidewalks. Even minor falls can lead to sprains, strains, tears, and even fractures of your ankle and feet. If this happens to you, please contact my office immediately as I have 24 hour emergency care.
5. Be aware of signals from your feet.
Perhaps the worst threat that cold weather brings is frostbite. If you feel numbness and/or pain in your feet this could be an early warning sign of frostbite. The first thing that ought to be done is to soak your feet in warm water and dry them thoroughly with warm towels. If there are concerns that you have frostbite, please call my office immediately to ensure that no tissue was damaged in your feet.
If you have any further questions or concerns about what should be done to maintain healthy feet during winter, please call my office to set up an appointment.