Practicing Good Hygiene
Make sure to wash your feet daily. Feet tend to get dirtier and sweatier than other parts of the body, so it’s important to have good sanitary habits. If you take showers in the morning and not at night, at least make feet-washing a part of your nightly routine when you get home. Aside from being a mark of good hygiene, doing this also stops you from carrying dirt into your bed.
- Wash them with soap and warm water. This will cleanse your feet of sweat, dirt and bacteria that might be living there. Pay extra attention to the spaces in between the toes. Wipe your feet gently with a towel afterward.
- Keep your toenails clean as well. If you walk around wearing sandals in the summer, you might find that your toenails get dirty. Take the time to clean them every time you bathe your feet.
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Moisturize your feet everyday. Put lotion or foot cream on as a part of your routine. One way to achieve soft, moisturized feet is to rub on some lotion or petroleum jelly before bed, and slip on some socks. When you wake up in the morning, you'll find that your feet are very soft and are free from dryness! Just remember to never let the area between toes become over-moisturized, as this will cause fungus.
Wear the right footwear for the occasion. Your feet will stay healthier if you wear proper footwear designed to keep your feet clean, dry and at a comfortable temperature. You dress the rest of your body to stay comfortable in different weather conditions, and you should do the same for your feet.
- Keep them cool in the summer with sandals and footwear that breathes. If you wear shoes that make your feet hot in the summer, you could end up with odor or a fungal infection.
- Keep them warm in the winter with waterproof boots and socks. If you wear shoes that don't keep your feet warm enough, you're more prone to getting frostbite.
Get rid of odors. Dealing with odor is a problem many people face, since feet produce more sweat than the rest of the body and tend to harbor bacteria that creates a smell. If your foot odor has gotten out of hand, there are measures you can take to make them smell better right away.
- Try changing your socks more often. If your feet tend to sweat a lot throughout the day, bringing an extra pair of socks with you could really help to decrease the odor that builds up. Change your socks when they get damp with sweat.
- Keep your shoes clean. Sometimes the odor is worse when sweat and bacteria build up in shoes. Then every time you put them on, the problem is perpetuated. Wearing socks with your shoes, cleaning them every so often and buying new shoes when it's time are all ways to reduce odor.
- Try foot powder. There are many products designed to keep feet dry and odor-free. Try sprinkling foot powder, baby powder or talcum powder in your shoes before you put them on.
Keep them dry. Athlete’s foot and other foot fungus tends to grow in moist conditions. A few tweaks in your hygiene routine can prevent you from having to deal with these unpleasant afflictions, which often cause itchy rashes. Do the following to keep your feet clean and dry:
- Change your socks often. It's the top prevention method for all kinds of foot-related issues, from odor to fungus. Wearing damp socks provides the perfect environment for fungus to grow, so change them often, especially if you sweat a lot.
- Use foot powder. Many people sprinkle powder in their shoes to keep everything clean and dry.
Shower safely. If you shower in a locker room or another public place, take precautions so you don’t end up with someone else’s foot fungus. Showers are typically damp environments that can harbor fungus and bacteria. It's not a good idea to step into a public shower without protection on your feet.
- Wear flip flops or shower shoes when you shower in locker rooms and other public places.
- It's also important not to share shoes with other people. If you're an athlete, don't share cleats and other athletic equipment.
Trim your toenails properly. Every few weeks, trim your toenails to keep them healthy and strong. Trimming them the wrong way results in ingrown toenails, which can be quite painful. Trim them straight across, rather than trimming the edges into a curve. You should also avoid trimming them too short, since this could result in ingrown toenails or an infection.
- If you would really prefer a rounded shape instead of a straight square, use a nail file to smooth out the ridges and to give the edges a bit of a curve, so you would end up with a square shape with rounded edges.
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