The common foot problems are:
- Fungal infection or athletes foot.
- Corns or calluses.
- Sweaty, smelly feet.
- Chipped nails.
- Cracked heels.
This is a common problem during the monsoon season in people who need to wear shoes and socks all day. This is due to heat and humidity and commonly occurs between the toes.
- May appear as a whitish boggy area in the webs between the toes with or without itching.
- At times there is flaking and scaling of soles.
- There may be thickening and heaping of crumbly material under the toenails.
Corns and calluses
- The feet must be kept dry and good foot hygiene must be maintained.
- Socks must preferably be made of cotton and be changed daily.
- Shoes should be alternated.
- Using an anti-fungal powder every morning and an anti-fungal cream at night is helpful.
- A dermatologist (skin specialist) must be consulted if the problems persist.
These occur due to persistent friction, rubbing and or pressure. People with arthritis, with improperly positioned toes or bony spurs are more prone as there are abnormal pressure points that act on the foot causing corns.
Symptoms: Corn is a cone shaped thickening of the outer horny layer of the skin that becomes very hard and painful. Calluses are similar to corns but do not have the regular round shape and are generally not painful.
Treatment: It is important to eliminate the cause of increased friction or pressure. The shoes must be well fitting. Use of insoles and lubrication of the skin helps. Soaking the feet in warm water and then rubbing them gently with pumice stone helps minimizing the discomfort. If the problem persists, consult the dermatologist.Smelly feet
This is due to excessive sweating and wearing shoes for prolonged periods. This can be prevented by washing the feet well and drying them before wearing shoes. The socks must be washed and changed daily. The same pair of shoes must not be worn daily. Using anti-fungal powders helps.Clipped nails
Sometimes the nails become brittle and start to clip. This can be prevented by massaging the fingers and feet with warm olive oil every week. Each night the nails may be rubbed with moisturizing creams to prevent them from becoming brittle.Cracked heels
These can be prevented by wearing comfortable footwear and avoiding standing for prolonged periods. The feet must be soaked in warm water and gently scrubbed at least once a week. It helps to apply a moisturizing cream to the soles every night.