Whether it’s summer or winter, we should never ignore our feet. They are the all-important weight bearers of our body, which act as a foundation of the human anatomy. If any fungal or another infection goes ignored, you could develop significantly worse issues that will trouble you for years to come.
Here are some great ways to keep your feet protected in the harsh, dry winter months:
Remove jagged skin- Moisturising dead skin won’t serve any purpose. It is important to remove the dead layer first by exfoliation once every month. This can be done with pumice stones or loofas, but it should be done mildly. It also helps remove the dirt and grime stuck to the hardened dead skin. Follow it with a hydrating moisturiser and leave it overnight. Scrubbing can also be done with a mixture of sugar and olive oil, with a few drops of mint or tea tree oil added to it for its antibacterial properties.
Pamper your feet- Soak your feet in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes twice a month. This helps soften the skin. Then rub your feet mildly, dry them thoroughly, and apply a vitamin E rich cold cream. If your feet are susceptible to infections and inflammations, use an antibacterial cream.
Nourish your feet- Use mashed banana mixed with lemon juice for a hydrating mask. Apply it all over your feet and wash them with warm water after 20 minutes. Apply moisturising foot cream or petroleum jelly at least twice a day before going out and before sleeping. It is also very important to keep yourself hydrated in the winter; the cold weather and high winds take away the moisture from your skin.
Care for your toenails- To groom your winter feet, you should regularly trim your nails. You can paint your nails in lively colours to brighten them up as well. People might think that nail paints are toxic and can harm your nails, but a good nail polish will protect your nails from damage such as dryness and breakage. It can also enhance nail growth. Some nail paint brands have vitamins which help promote nail growth and cuticle health.
Check your cuticles- Cuticles help protect the nail matrix and hence one should not cut them. If you cut or remove your cuticles, nothing will fill their open space, and therefore it may become more prone to disease, fungus and infection. However, if you want your nails to look longer, you can push them back slightly.
Wear socks- It is a good idea to wear socks to protect your feet in winter. They are as important as scarves, caps and gloves. They will help prevent your feet from being exposed to the extreme climate and also prevent dust and dirt from sticking to the cream applied to the feet.
Wear comfortable shoes- Always remember to wear shoes that you are comfortable in. Avoid wearing tight shoes or high heels if your heels are hurting. This may lead to skin infections and soreness.
Consult a dermatologist- If you experience skin irritation, swelling of the feet or peeling of the skin, consult a doctor as this signals severe skin allergy that may require immediate medical intervention.
Botox for excessive sweating- It is extremely important to wear warm, preferably woolen socks, in winters. However, there are a few people who suffer from an extreme sweating disorder, called hyperhidrosis. Such people sweat irrespective of the weather. For them, botox is a wonderful remedy. It prevents sweating and keeps the feet dry.
- Dr. Chiranjiv Chhabra, leading dermatologist, Skin Alive Clinics