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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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Foot Odor

Foot odor is caused by bacteria. The medical name for foot odor is bromhidrosis.This bacteria flourishes in the dampness created by the lack of ventilation in shoes and socks. The feet have thousands of sweat glands. The perspiration secreted by these sweat glands is composed of water, sodium chloride, fat, minerals, and acids. The bacteria break down the perspiration which results in foot odor.

There are several home remedies for problematic foot odor. Washing the feet daily with antibacterial soap and wearing shoes and socks that are of natural fibers which allow for proper ventilation can solve most cases of foot odor. Some people find it helpful to avoid wearing the same shoes every day. Alternating shoes allows the shoes to dry out thoroughly which prevents the buildup of dampness in the shoes.

If additional treatment is needed, a salt foot soak is one home remedy for foot odor. Soaking the feet in a combination of kosher salt and water will encourage the feet to be dry. However, it can also dry out the skin. If dry skin develops, either from the salt foot soak or use of antibacterial soap, reduce the frequency of use and apply moisturizer at night.

One way to fight food odor is to decrease the amount of perspiration that the feet produce. Stress increases sweating, so deep breathing and relaxation methods could actually help alleviate foot odor. Some people use antiperspirants on their feet to control foot odor. Antiperspirants reduce the amount of perspiration, thus reducing the perspiration available to the bacteria.

There are some over-the-counter foot powders that may provide some relief. Some powders can be applied directly to the feet. Other powders are for application to the shoes. There are also antifungal sprays for the shoes. If the shoes retain odor after being worn, they should be washed, if possible, then allowed to dry thoroughly before being treated with a spray.

Even though foot odor is a common problem, it is often a source of embarrassment. Someone experiencing foot odor should see improvement in the condition if they use these treatment methods. If the condition persists, a doctor should be consulted.


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