by Dr. Christopher Milkie
Summer time is here and so are sunny days spent splashing in pools and relaxing on the beach. As many vacationers, summer can cause some extra wear and tear on the body. Educated people can protected themselves by using sunscreen, lip protection with SPF, hats, and sunglasses. Many, however, will forget to look after two of the most important and neglected parts of the body – THE FEET!
Here are some tips on how to protect your feet from the side effects of all of that summer fun:
- Remember to apply sunscreen to feet, especially the tops and fronts of the ankles. Don’t forget to reapply if you’re in the water. Pay extra attention to areas where your sandals or shoes may rub off the sunscreen. Painfully sunburnt feet can ruin a vacation!
- When out of the water, wash and dry feet thoroughly, including between the toes. Apply a topical anti-fungal medication on any cracked or itchy skin. Clean, dry feet are more disease-resistant.
- Don’t share towels to avoid catching athlete’s foot and other contagious conditions.
- Take special care of toenails, which are more vulnerable around damp areas. Injury to the nail bed can make you more susceptible to fungal and bacterial infections, so see your podiatrist at the first sign of discoloration or infection.
- To avoid toe and ankle injures, wear shoes that are specific to the activity or sport you are participating in. No hiking or playing frisbee in flip flops, and be sure to wear boots or safe shoes when working outside and mowing the lawn.
- Give yourself plenty of time to break in new shoes before going on trips where you will be doing lots of walking. When trying on new shoes, make sure you bring the same socks that you plan on wearing with them.
- When in the lake or ocean, be cautious of of jellyfish, sea urchins, and sharp rocks and coral. Keeping waterproof sandals or or water shoes on at all times is a good idea to prevent stings, cuts and other injures.
- Most importantly, swim, walk and enjoy the summer! Walking is the best form of exercise for your feet, and swimming is a great alternative for those suffering from tendonitis and plantar fasciitis, both of which can make other forms of exercise more painful.
- If you get a pedicure in a salon, read our tips to make sure that it is safe.
Before heading to the beach or going on vacation, be sure to bring the sunscreen and pay some extra attention to your feet. The travel, sports, and other fun of summer can be tough on your feet and ankles – contact us for an appointment today to get help for any problems you may be having.