We have only two feet to get us through this world, and oh, how we abuse them! Often we do not give them much thought until they start to hurt. We do not notice the changes that occur as a normal process to aging.
Osteoarthritis or overuse arthritis is common. Consider that the average person walks a total of three times around the world in a lifetime! When your feet ache at bedtime after a long day, anti-inflammatory medicine such as aspirin type products can help to relieve the discomfort. But this may be a sign that you should wear shoes with good support, thick rubber soles, a comfortable rather than constrictive width, and soft, breathable leather uppers.
Thick, yellow, crumbly, hard-to-cut toenails also develop with excessive wear and tear. Onychomycosis (fungus under the toenail) is rarely harmful or dangerous, but can make your toes or your whole foot hurt when wearing shoes.
Resist the urge to try to dig the yellow flaky fungus out from under your nails, as this hastens the fungal growth. Although there are several “fungus medicines” sold over the counter, they are rarely effective. New prescription drugs and creams are usually very effective in clearing your nails of fungus
Itchy, irritated, cracked skin may be worse in the cooler months, but should be treated throughout the year. Apply a thin layer of your favorite softening lotion to the top and bottom of your feet every morning and evening, but do NOT put lotion between your toes.
Corns and Calluses
Corns (on the top of your toes) and calluses (on the balls of your feet) can progressively get worse with time. They are caused by excessive friction between your shoes and your bones. NEVER use “medicated” pads to relieve these problems. That medicine is acid and can burn your healthy skin. Choose a shoe with a thick cushioned sole and a high toe box so the top of your toes do not rub the shoes when you walk.
DO NOT neglect your feet. Early intervention of problems can help to avoid the worsening of many of these conditions. Seek professional help if pain persists or discomfort worsens.
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