How to Take Care of Feet & Toenails at Home
Even though we put our feet through a lot every day, they often get ignored when it comes to basic care. While basic hygiene alone is important, going the extra mile to care for your feet can make a big difference. Thankfully, knowing how to take care of feet at home isn’t difficult.
Think about what you do put your feet through in a day. From miles of walking, to being cramped inside shoes, even people who aren’t extremely active need to take better care of the feet. If you have ever experienced foot pain and toenails that hurt, or regularly do, it may be because you’re not giving them the attention they need.
Looking after your feet doesn’t require any fancy equipment. While investing in a quality vibrating foot spa or best electric foot massager can be beneficial if you really want to pamper yourself, you can take good care of your feet with just a few simple techniques.
By spending just a few minutes a day and giving some extra attention to your feet, you will soon notice that they start to feel better. Let’s take a look at some of the things that you can do to prevent foot pain and soothe existing foot-related issues.
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Ways to Take Care of Feet & Toenails
Caring for your feet starts with proper hygiene. It may sound simple, but it’s easy to forget to take a few extra minutes to wash your feet. You should be washing your feet, and in between your toes with a washcloth every time you take a shower. If you have a hard time bending down or balancing, you may want to invest in a long foot brush that can scrub for you.
What’s most important about washing your feet is drying them afterward. You’ll want to make sure your feet are always fully dry after cleaning them. This helps to prevent things like toenail fungus, or athlete’s foot.
Soak Your Feet for 15 to 20 Minutes
We mentioned the use of quality vibrating foot spas above, and there are some great ones on the market. If you want to see some of our recommendations, click on the link to read our in-depth article. Most of these machines either vibrate or use heat to help soothe aching feet.
However, you don’t need a foot spa to adequately soak and soothe your feet. Any type of basin will work. Simply use the following steps:
- Gather all the ingredients you’ll need to soak your feet. This includes the basin, any essential oils, Epsom salts, a foot scrub, towel, etc.
- Make sure your feet are washed before soaking them.
- Fill the basin with warm water. You can add things like essential oils or Epsom salts for a more spa-like experience.
- Soak your feet for 15-20 minutes, or until the water cools down.
- To help remove dead skin, use a pumice stone or foot brush after soaking, then rinse.
- Dry your feet thoroughly.
You can soak your feet as often as you’d like. It’s also a good idea to keep them moisturized, so many people choose to finish a foot bath by rubbing lotion on their feet. This helps to prevent cracking and dry skin. When skin begins to crack, it becomes more prone to bacterial infections.
Wear Shoes That Fit Properly
Many times, foot problems arise from the shoes we wear. Shoes should never feel tight or cause discomfort when wearing them. Shoes that are too tight can cause bunions and other painful foot growths. Additionally, they block airflow from your feet and toes, which can cause fungal infections and strong odor.
To take care of this problem, always buy shoes with a bit of extra room, and alternate the shoes you wear each day. Always wear antifungal socks to wick away moisture. But, if you find that your feet sweat a lot, change out your socks more than once a day. Keeping moisture trapped inside your shoes or socks can create even bigger problems.
Clip Your Toenails the Right Way
Toenails are just as important as the rest of the feet when it comes to hygiene and grooming. Your toenails should be clipped regularly to the nail line. Nails that are too long are at a greater risk for toenail fungus.
Clipping your nails regularly also makes them easier to keep clean, so debris doesn’t get stuck underneath them and cause other types of infection. If you have thick toenails, or nails that are hard to manage, you can soak them to soften first, and use a pair of toenail clippers for thick nails.
Only Apply Antifungal Toenail Polishes
Do you wear nail polish? It’s easy for moisture to get trapped, which has negative implications for the health of your toenails. If you do paint your nails, apply an antifungal toenail polish instead. This will help to kill any fungus and prevent any yellowing from taking place.
Don’t wear polish 24/7. Try to allow your feet and toenails breathe when you return home from work or socializing.
Get a Foot Massage at Home
You don’t need to go to a salon or expensive spa to get a quality foot massage. You can do it yourself. Our feet have many different pressure points from the heel to the toe.
According to PainCare, pressing or massaging these different points can help with different issues all over the body. This is called reflexology. It is a form of medicine used by many different cultures that helps to alleviate different conditions, aches and pains. But, you don’t have to be an expert in reflexology to get the benefits of a good foot massage.
A simple foot massage can help to alleviate aching and discomfort in your feet. Pay specific attention to the arches of your feet, and your toes. You can use lotions, foot creams, or essential oils to moisturize and get more out of the massage.
As you can see, it doesn’t take any expensive equipment, or even a lot of time to take care of the feet at home. By taking a few minutes each day, you can alleviate aching feet, and any underlying conditions that may be causing them.
Foot-related conditions are more common than most people realize, and we often misdiagnose them as nothing more than tired feet. The more attention you pay to your feet each day by taking proper care of them, the better they will feel. And, you’ll be more aware of any possible medical problems that may be creeping up as well.