The human foot is made up of 26 bones, all of them bearing the brunt of daily activity and strain. It’s no surprise then that most people experience foot issues at some point in their lives.
After all, for as much as the average person uses their feet, they also often neglect them. To put it in plain and simple terms: feet need some good old-fashioned TLC from time to time. But many people are often reluctant to give their feet the attention they deserve.
This is a mistake, because addressing foot issues the moment they present themselves will pay dividends down the line in the form of less pain and great overall foot health. With that in mind, here are some practical ways anyone can address common foot problems.
- Plantar Fasciitis
This is the clinical term for the pain many people feel in the arch or heel of their foot. This is the most common type of heel pain and common causes include ill-fitting shoes and inflammation of connective tissue in the foot.
Sitting for long periods of time only exacerbates the pain, so those experiencing plantar fasciitis should commit to regular activity throughout the day.
- Achilles Tendonitis
This affliction is often characterized by pain at the back of the heel that is sometimes accompanied by a bump. The pain oftentimes radiates to the ankle, which can be made worse by walking.
Achilles tendonitis is often due to overuse of the heel, which results in stretching or tearing of the internal tissues. To treat this problem, doctors recommend stretching, ice and daily rest as well as anti-inflammatory medication to deal with the pain.
- Heel Spurs
Those who experience sharp pain at the bottom of their heel during their walks are familiar with heel spurs. This condition is often seen in conjunction with plantar fasciitis, which is the result of the heel membrane pulling away from the bone.
The end result is the bony “spur” that protrudes from the heel. Anyone who suspect they may be suffering from heel spurs should visit the doctor for an immediate x-ray, as surgery or orthotics may be necessary to correct the problem.
FOOT SKIN CONDITIONS
- Athlete’s Foot
A common skin condition characterized by itching, blisters, inflammation and scaly areas between the toes or on the bottom of the foot. Because the feet are often kept moist and in the dark, they are susceptible to fungal growth, which is the cause of athlete’s foot.
The good news is there are plenty of over-the-counter anti-fungal creams available for the treatment of this problem.
Caused by a virus often found in public pools, this is a condition that can affect any part of the foot. Over-the-counter treatments containing salicylic acid have proven effective, but more stubborn wart may require freezing or surgical removal by a doctor.
These skin issues are characterized by raised bumps made up of dead skin cells and often found on the top or sides of the foot. Poorly fitting shoes are often the cause of corns, as the repeated friction is what damages and kills the cells.
The best method to prevention and treatment of corns is one in the same: wear well-padded, well-fitting shoes.
- Nail Fungus
Another skin issue caused by a fungal infection, the symptoms of nail fungus include discoloration and yellowing of the toenails that may or may not be painful. Oftentimes nail fungus is a direct byproduct of athlete’s foot.
Regular cleansing is helpful to clearing up mild infections, so those suffering from nail fungus may want to consider pedicures. Over-the-counter anti-fungal creams as well as all-natural tea tree oil can be effective as well.
These are some of the main issues that can plague a person’s feet. As noted above, a proper maintenance regimen in the form of stretching and pedicures will do wonders for beleaguered feet. And above all it’s important to wear comfortable, properly fitting shoes in order to help stave off foot problems.
Adam Lambert writes for the Houston Nail Clinic, whose mission is to rid the world of fingernail fungus and toenail fungus. Writing about treatment for toenail fungus allows people to learn about the best methods for getting rid of this unsightly infection.