Your feet are such an important part of your body. They give you the freedom to move around freely, and they help you stay healthy by encouraging physical activity. However, it’s easy to take your feet for granted — at least until you experience a foot problem.
Everyone's foot health is important, regardless of age. Foot care is something that most people don't give much thought to, but it's critical to prevent foot issues as a part of maintaining your overall health. People with diabetes must take even greater care of their feet to prevent potentially serious health issues.
Board-certified podiatrist David Biss, DPM, leads the team at Concord Podiatry in Concord and Plymouth, New Hampshire, where your foot health is a top priority. Good foot care is essential to your overall health, and always wearing clean, dry socks is a simple, proactive step you can take to keep your feet healthy. Here’s why.
Prevent athlete’s foot
Athlete's foot is something that almost everyone has heard of. It’s a type of fungal infection that flourishes in dark, damp environments. Sweaty feet in tight-fitting shoes are the perfect breeding ground for foot fungus.
When this happens, a rash appears between the toes, causing irritation, itching and burning. However, just because it’s referred to as “athlete’s” foot doesn’t mean that it affects only athletes. Anyone can get athlete’s foot, so it’s important to wear clean, dry socks and change them daily.
In addition, keeping your feet clean removes any bacteria and dead skin that may have accumulated and could cause an infection. If you develop a fungal foot infection, especially if it’s severe, see a podiatrist who can properly diagnose the condition and prescribe the appropriate medication for treatment.
Reduce the risk of diabetic foot ulcers
When you have a break in the skin or a deep sore on your foot, it’s called a foot ulcer. These wounds have the potential to become infected. Ill-fitting shoes that force your feet to rub against the material can cause what starts as a minor scrape to turn into a large wound that heals slowly.
Taking good care of your feet by washing them daily and wearing clean, dry socks is a part of lowering your risk of diabetic foot ulcers.
It’s critical to treat foot ulcers as soon as you become aware of their presence. Prompt treatment is necessary to avoid potentially serious complications. If you notice a cut, scrape or wound on your foot, contact Dr. Biss immediately.
Protect your feet
Wearing sweaty or dirty socks increases the likelihood of developing issues like blisters, which can impair your ability to perform when you're working out or even just going about your day.
Wear breathable socks that ensure that your feet get good air circulation when wearing shoes. Clean, dry socks that breathe well help prevent moisture buildup and protect your feet.
Maintain good hygiene
Wearing shoes without socks, especially when your feet get sweaty, can cause an odor and set the stage for poor foot hygiene. Poor hygiene can be embarrassing and may even have long-term consequences for your self-esteem. Wearing clean, dry socks and shoes that fit well is part of good foot hygiene and keeping your feet healthy.
It’s easy to forget about your feet until you experience problems, but foot issues can impact your quality of life. Taking care of your feet now — even with such a seemingly simple step as always wearing clean, dry socks — lowers your chances of having foot problems later.
To discuss how you can take better care of your feet and for all of your foot and ankle needs, call Concord Podiatry to set up a visit with Dr. Biss. Your feet will thank you!