Diabetic Foot Care Advice

The aim of this blog is to help members of the public to understand their feet better. However the information on this blog should never be regarded as medical advice. Readers with foot problems are strongly encouraged to visit their GP if not the podiatrist for further medical assessment and treatment.

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Friday, July 11, 2008

Foot Baths

Foot baths, or foot soaks, are used for a variety of reasons. Foot baths are commonly used to treat minor foot ailments such as dry skin or athlete’s foot. They are also used for relaxation and to invigorate tired feet.

In order to prepare a foot bath, ingredients are added to the water for soaking feet. Most foot soaks start with a combination of water and Epsom salt. People add varying ingredients to obtain the desired effect. Some people prefer to boil the water before adding the salt and other ingredients. If you boil the water, make sure it has cooled properly before using it as a foot bath.

For relaxation, some like to add a couple drops of lavender essential oil to the combination of water and Epsom salt. Some people prefer tea tree oil, sandlewood, or Ylang Ylang oil instead of the lavender. Sandlewood and Ylang Ylang oil have soothing effects. Tea tree oil has an antifungal property and is sometimes used as a treatment for athlete’s foot.

One peppermint foot soak is to add a few drops of peppermint essential oil, a drop of eucalyptus essential oil, and one drop of lemon essential oil to plain, boiling water. Let the boiling mixture cool before using it as a foot soak.

You may choose to experiment with essential oils that are relaxing or invigorating to you. When doing a foot soak, just relax the feet in the prepared foot bath for at least several minutes. If the goal is to relax, create a relaxing environment in the room where you will do the foot soak. You may choose to light candles in that room or do another relaxing activity, such as reading, while you soak your feet.

If the skin of the feet is dry, pat the feet dry after the foot bath and apply liberal amounts of moisturizer. One natural remedy for dry feet that can effectively follow a foot bath is to apply shortening to the damp feet and put on socks. The socks prevent to shortening from rubbing off and getting the greasiness on floors and furniture. This can be done at night before going to bed.


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