Look out for your feet

Feet take the weight of our whole body, so over time it’s not hard to imagine how problems can crop up. Problems with feet can easily turn into problems elsewhere – ankle, knee, hip and spine problems can result from a foot injury, altered gait or weight bearing position.

Despite us all recognising the obvious strain our feet go through, it’s often the case we ignore them, or don’t think enough about looking after them. Statistics from the Royal College of Podiatry found 9 out of 10 people suffer with some sort of foot problem, with 1 in 5 reporting foot pain often or constantly.

As an osteopath I can help with foot pain, when it’s the result of a mechanical problem. People who suffer with their mobility, poor eyesight, or conditions such as diabetes that can result in poor foot health, should consider having their feet regularly checked and cared for by a podiatrist/chiropodist.

Try this exercise. It helps keep the joint mobile that can cause a problem with bunions, a common issue that can be painful and cause problems fitting into shoes. Practice it on both feet doing 10 repetitions each day. Stop if it causes pain, but it might take a little while to grasp it, especially if your feet are stiff. CLICK ON BUNION EXERCISE TO VIEW!

Bunion Exercise

The following are some general footcare tips:

 

  • Wash your feet daily in warm soapy water.

 

  • Dry your feet well, especially between your toes. This is where infections may develop.

 

  • Change your socks often to avoid foot odour.

 

  • If you get dry feet moisturise them. You can also use a foot file or pumice stone to remove dry skin. Note that sometimes a dry, harder area is evidence of a change in the way you bear weight through the foot. Think about seeing someone like myself if you have had an injury, or problems with pain.

 

  • Cut your toenails carefully. Cut straight across, never at angles to avoid in-growing toenails.

 

  • Be careful with your footwear. If you need to wear high heels at work or to go out. Travel to and from the office or party in sensible shoes and change in and out of them.

 

  • Sensible shoes should support your foot, fit well and be comfortable. Having a small broad-based heel, perhaps up to 3/4″ is better than having a completely flat heel.

 

  • Try and avoid wearing flip-flops for too long a period of time. They offer no support and can result in pain.