When we consider that one foot is capable of producing over half a cup of sweat per day, it’s no wonder that feet can get pretty stinky. When that sweat is released from the pores, it is broken down by bacteria on the skin, producing an odour as it’s decomposed.
Bacteria thrive in dark, damp environments, making the feet - the most concentrated area of sweat glands in the human body – a kind of bacteria paradise.
Following these 8 simple steps to keep bacteria at bay and reduce moisture will help keep your feet fresh and odour free.
1. Wash your feet daily with antibacterial soap. The feet tend to be overlooked in the shower, but they need as much attention as the rest of your body.
2. Dry feet really well, paying particular attention to the space in between your toes.Wiping the skin with rubbing alcohol will also help to dry out the skin.
3. Always wear socks when wearing closed toed shoes. Small no-show socks are great for ballet flats or dress shoes. Wear socks made from breathable fabrics to wick moisture away from the skin and always put on a fresh pair every day.
4. Use an antiperspirant on the soles of the feet and in between the toes. Spreading it on at night allows enough time for the product to soak into the skin.
5. Don’t wear the same pair of shoes two days in a row. Alternate shoes to allow at least 24hrs for shoes to completely dry out.
6. Sprinkle baking soda into your shoes before you wear them to absorb moisture and reduce bacteria by neutralizing the PH balance in sweat.
7. Disinfect your shoes with an antifungaal/antibacterial spray.
8. Wear proper footwear in snow and rain to avoid having wet shoes. If shoes do get wet, dry them as soon as possible with a hair dryer or leave them in the sun to dry.
If your feet are sweating excessively or you aren’t getting any relief from your symptoms, make an appointment with your Chiropodist. There may be an underlying issue (such as athlete’s foot) that may require a prescription.
8 Interesting facts you may not know about your toenails
- Men’s toenails grow faster than women’s. An exception to this is during pregnancy when women’s toenails grow at a faster rate.
- Nails grow faster in summer and warm climates.
- Toenails are made up of keratin – the same protein as hair.
- Fingernails grow 4 times faster than toenails. On average, fingernails grow 3.5 mm per month, while toenails grow about 1.6 mm per month.
- When the sole of a baby's foot is firmly stroked, the big toe bends back toward the top of the foot and the other toes fan out. This is a normal reflex up to about 2 years of age.
- It is a common myth that white spots on the nail are caused by a calcium deficiency but they are generally just minor nail damage and are nothing to be concerned about.
- It takes 5-6 months to re-grow a toenail, even longer for a big toe which can take up to 12 months.
- Primates, including humans, are the only animals with nails rather than harder claws.
- Why do we have toenails? Toenails are mostly considered to be vestigial which means that they once had a function which has been eliminated – like wisdom teeth or your appendix. They do however provide some protection to the tops of your toes from rubbing on your shoes.
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