Since the first snowfall, our feet have been craving rays of the sun, dips in the lake and walks through the sand. To most, summer sparks the urge for outdoor activities and sun-kissed skin. For some, however, summer marks the dreaded time of year to shy away from foot exposure. As a foot specialist and Doctor of Podiatric Medicine in Toronto, summer brings to light many patient complaints of excessively dry feet that can become dry and cracked.
Other common foot problems I see in my clinic are bunions, heel pain and toenail fungus in both men and women. Although both genders have a relatively equal predisposition to foot problems, women are more likely to spot symptoms as their feet are exposed more frequently in summer footwear. Women tend to feel less feminine when these foot imperfections show but there is no need to suffer in silence. Talk to a foot specialist and find out your options.
Summer Toe Tips
Making smart decisions in your daily lifestyle is important regardless of the season. We often remember summer skin care for larger areas of the body, such as our face, arms and legs, but forget about our feet! Feet have always forgiven us for wearing heels a few hours too long and for wearing sweaty, stinky socks while at the gym. Now is as good a time as any to give back to our feet and let them know we care. Here are my top summer toe tips for the season:
- Use sunscreen on the tops of feet as this is a sensitive area that can become easily sunburned. Winter or summer, it is wise to keep the skin on feet moisturized to diminish dryness/cracking, corns and calluses. Did you know the skin on your feet can also lose a pint of moisture every day from excessive perspiration?
- If you notice toenails becoming dark and thick at the top of the nail, this could be an early sign of fungus. Be sure to ask your doctor for more details on topical medication available by prescription to clear the infection before it becomes severe.
- Consider using an antifungal powder or spray on your feet in the morning to keep them fresh and dry for longer periods of time.
- Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!
- Not all creams and lotions are made the same. The feet have thicker skin, unlike other areas of the body and thus require a product that will help improve the skin’s ability to retain moisture. The CeraVe Renewing SA Foot Cream is one of my favourites and just launched in Canada. It exfoliates and moisturizes extremely dry, red, itchy and flaky skin. This foot cream is unique and revolutionary due to its innovative, non-irritating ingredients. I have seen remarkable improvements in the texture of skin with positive feedback after months of use with my patients.
Whether you are walking or climbing or swimming this summer, your feet are there for you. Let’s be there for them!
About Dr. Miltchin:
Hartley Miltchin, DPM has over 35 years of experience as a leading podiatrist in Toronto and offers a wide range of services at his clinic, Accent On Feet.