Are your feet ‘summer-ready’?

podiatrists to get feet ready for summer

Don’t let cracked heels, corns, fungal skin and nail infections, warts, or the risk of skin cancers spoil your summer. Summer is the time to step out in confidence and get on top of your painful or unsightly foot conditions.

 

What can I do about callouses, cracked heels and corns?

Seeing a podiatrist to manage conditions caused by callused or dry skin can be key to getting on top of them once and for all! A podiatrist can safely and painlessly remove corns, areas of dry and thickened skin and smooth off the heels and feet to prevent painful cracks from occurring this summer. Additionally, our podiatrists can help you uncover possible causes for the skin becoming drier or harder. A few common ones, particularly in summer include:

Footwear choice

The style and material that make up some common summer footwear can dry out the feet more than others and cause drying or cracking of the heels.

Sweating

Sweaty feet in summer can increase friction between the foot and ground surfaces which can cause a build up of hard, thickened skin

Heat

Dry heat can draw too much moisture from the skin. If this is not replaced, it can lead to itchy or painful skin on the bottom of the feet

Moisturiser choice

Different moisturising ingredients can affect skin types in different ways. Your podiatrist can assess your skin and ask the right questions to determine if the moisturiser you’re using could use a change to upgrade your results.

Pressure

Calluses and corns are caused by high areas of pressure. Sandals, ballet flats and other summer footwear can be less supportive and lead to higher pressure areas. 

 

What can I do to avoid skin and nail fungus or warts?

The fungal infection that commonly affects the skin on the feet and toenails loves the warm, humid weather that we’ve been experiencing in Australia as we move into summer. Fungal infections in the skin, commonly known as tinea or the athlete’s foot can be very itchy and uncomfortable. It most commonly occurs between the toes where the skin looks soggy or on the bottom of your feet in an itchy rash or flakey dry skin. In the nails, it is often painless, but causes crumbling, brown, green or yellow discolouration in the nail bed and possibly long-term changes in nail shape, colour and thickness if left untreated! A plantar wart (or verruca) is a viral infection that can be painful to walk on and stubborn to treat, early intervention is key to successful treatment. Here are a few important tips to avoid picking up warts or fungal skin and nail infections this summer::

  • Avoid being barefoot in public barefoot areas.

  • Ensure skin is well moisturised and any skin injuries are covered and protected.

  • Wear supportive and protective shoes as much as possible.

  • Ensure your shoes and socks are dry before putting them on, or change the socks as soon as possible if they get sweaty.

  • Properly drying between your toes after showers, swimming or being barefoot.

  • Allowing joggers to dry between uses. Extra points if they’re exposed to the sun.

  • Remove any nail polish and check the nails frequently. Don’t paint over old nail polish!

  • Completing regular foot checks, so nothing goes unnoticed in the skin or nails.

  • Book in to see a podiatrist if anything looks suspicious! They can diagnose and tailor a thorough management plan to get on top of fungal infections as quickly as possible.

 

How can I ensure my feet are protected from the sun?

That pesky, summer sandal tan or sunburn may be riskier than you think! Rates of skin cancer in the feet are higher than you would think and are continuing to rise. They are often diagnosed later than most other skin cancers and can occur under the nails, on the bottom of the feet or on the top of your foot. They can often be mistaken for bruises, age spots, fungal or other types of nail or skin infections. 

It is essential to apply sunscreen to the body during summer and that includes the feet! Keep the feet in the shade where possible and regularly check the foot for changes. Reach out to a podiatrist or medical professional if any changes are noticed or occur.

 

Your experienced podiatrist can help to prevent, diagnose and treat the common foot conditions that become more prevalent during summer. We can help to ensure the feet are looking and feeling healthy, so that you can enjoy the summer to its fullest.

 

If you are concerned about the health of your feet, book with Performance Podiatry today. Our podiatrists are experts of all conditions of the foot and lower leg and would be happy to help you gain health and confidence this summer!

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