Don’t forget: the skin is the largest organ of your body! It makes sense then that many problems of the feet can start with the most exposed part of the feet: the skin. Skin can be affected by physical injury, as well as microscopic organisms, like bacteria, fungi, and viruses. That’s why it is very important to take care of our feet through good hygiene and maintenance.
The following are common skin conditions that can affect your feet:
- Dry skin, especially dry, cracked skin – This can especially affect you when you wear sandals that expose your feet to the air for long periods of time. The heels are especially prone to this. Moisturizing after washing and drying the feet can help you fight dry skin. Additionally, make sure you stay hydrated for healthy skin.
- Bacterial Infection – Cuts and scrapes make you more at risk of bacterial infection. If not treated properly, it can become worse, filling with puss and even getting smelly. Diabetics need to pay attention to this because they may not notice cuts and scrapes if there is a loss of sensation in the feet.
- Athlete’s Foot – Caused by a fungus entering through open skin, an infection can develop into a skin rash and then spread to become fungal toenails. Good hygiene and careful foot care can prevent contraction of diseases.
- Warts – Caused by a virus, warts can develop when they are spread from person to person and enter through a break in the skin. Hygienic practices like not sharing items with infected people and using flip-flops in community locker rooms can prevent infection.
- Ingrown Toenails – When toenails are not trimmed properly, they can become ingrown. If they become infected, they can become inflamed.
- Blisters, corns, and calluses – External sources of pressure, like shoes can cause blisters, corns, and calluses on the feet. Better-fitting shoes and padding can help prevent worsening symptoms.
- Foot Odor – If feet are not properly washed every day, foot odor can develop and linger in socks and shoes. Shoes should be rotated each day and if you suffer from hyperhidrosis, change your socks midday.
If you have a problem with a skin condition or new growth on your skin make an appointment with us at The Podiatry Group. It’s more important to check for growths that may be a sign of skin cancer developing. Our podiatrists, Dr. Mark E. Reiner, Dr. Michael A. Haughey, Dr. William G. Coates, and Dr. Erik D. Rosenlof can perform a thorough assessment at our Jonesboro, AR office to treat feet and keep them healthy.