Are you required to stand for extended periods at work? Alternatively, you could suffer from a major health issue leading to dry feet. As summer approaches, many individuals will likely be itching to get outside and into the fresh air. The trade-off is that many individuals will have to expose their dry, cracked feet, which need some TLC, by wearing sandals and flip-flops. Some people may be too self-conscious to wear sandals or flip-flops because their feet are unattractive.
To prepare for sandal weather, this article explores what causes dry, cracked feet and what works best to treat the condition at home. Your dry skin, caused by a lack of moisture, is primarily to blame for the ugly cracks on your heels and feet. Because of the absence of oil glands, our feet are particularly prone to dryness. Fissures in the heel, which can easily become cracks, are caused by extreme dryness.
What are Dry and Cracked Feet?
Cracked feet, sometimes called heel fissures in the medical world, occur when the skin on the heel of the foot thickens and develops calluses and cracks. Simply put, people of all ages experience the discomfort of cracked feet. In most cases, cracked feet are merely an aesthetically unpleasant nuisance rather than a serious medical issue. However, if you don’t fix the problem, the cracks will get deeper, and bacteria that cause infections will have an easier time getting in.
Pain, peeling skin, bleeding, and irritation are some of the symptoms that may accompany a cracked foot. When the dermis layer of skin is ruptured, the discomfort of this ailment becomes apparent. Itchiness, dry patches, flaky areas, and cracks in the skin are all possible outcomes. Bleeding and bacterial infections are two potential outcomes of cracked skin. If you take good care of yourself early on, you should be able to control this issue easily.
What are the Causes of Cracked Feet?
Dry, cracked feet can result from several different factors. Causes of dry, cracked heels and feet go beyond moisture loss. Several factors, including long periods of standing, aging, and medical issues, can cause cracked feet. A podiatrist likened the procedure to applying plaster to a balloon, which would eventually split as the balloon expanded and the plaster hardened. Causes of cracked feet vary from person to person and depend on factors like health, lifestyle, and foot care regimen.
1. Parched Skin
If you have dry skin in general, it’s especially important to moisturize your feet regularly. If you let your dry skin go untreated, you may end up with cracked feet. Exfoliating and moisturizing your feet for a few minutes every day is preferable to treating cracked feet, specifically at the end of winter.
2. Long periods of standing
Standing for lengthy amounts of time in high heels on hard flooring is another common cause of cracked feet. Consider purchasing a heel cup if your profession requires you to stand on hard floors for long periods or if you regularly wear high heels.
3. Caused by Obesity
Cracked feet are another potential consequence of being overweight. Every person must use their feet to support their entire body; thus, any extra weight can cause discomfort. Cracked feet will be a regular occurrence under this added load. Weight loss is recommended to prevent damaged heels.
4. Health Problems
Cracked feet are a common symptom of many chronic diseases and conditions, including diabetes, eczema, thyroid issues, psoriasis, and athlete’s foot. However, treatments available can alleviate the discomfort of having dry, cracked feet.
5. Due to Old Age
Natural oils produced by the body that aid in maintaining supple, moisture-filled skin are gradually depleted as we age. You’ll notice that the skin on your feet is cracking because of your increasing dryness.
6. Too much exposure or submersion to water
Although it may seem counterintuitive, water can strip your skin of its natural oils if you expose it to it too often. Long periods spent in the shower or standing in water can dry out the skin on your feet, causing painful cracks.
7. The cold temperature in the environment
Cracked feet can be made worse by the cold temperatures of winter. The low humidity and heating in your house, car, or workplace will cause your skin to dry up.
8. Irritating Detergents
Dry skin around the feet is a sign that you’re using soap without moisturizing characteristics, which can develop into cracked feet if you keep using the soap without alleviating the dryness.
9. Lack of Moisturizing
It’s a common problem, yet many individuals just put up with dry skin. Applying a moisturizer, such as one advised by a podiatrist, is a great first step in avoiding dry, cracked feet. Scrubbing and moisturizing should be part of your daily routine.
10. Wearing Heeled Sandals or Shoes for a Long time
Beautiful as they may be, your favorite pair of shoes may put your feet at risk for cracks since they allow your heels and feet to swell and your skin to thin. This happens when the shoe does not properly support the foot and the sole is too thin.
Tips for Treating Dry and Cracked Feet
It’s time to get to the nice part now that you know what causes a cracked foot. Healing cracked feet doesn’t have to be a medical emergency or cost money. Cracked feet are a common problem, but there are several home cures you may try.
1. Maintain clean and hydrated feet
Maintaining a foot washing and moisturizing routine will help your feet feel smoother and appear healthier. To keep the skin from drying out and hydrate it while washing, use a hydrating cleanser or a body wash that comes in a cream or milk form.
Due to its ability to naturally hydrate the skin, honey can do wonders for your dry, cracked feet. One cup of honey can be added to warm water for a soothing foot soak. Repeat soaking your feet in honey water for 20 minutes before scrubbing away the dead skin. However, you should still apply moisturizer afterward.
3. Oil extracted from coconuts
In addition to its moisturizing effects, coconut oil’s antifungal and antibacterial qualities make it a useful natural cure for a cracked foot. This is an excellent cure for people whose dry, cracked feet have progressed to the point where the skin has broken. Before going to sleep, immerse your feet in warm water and scrub them thoroughly with a pumice stone. Then, cover your feet with a lot of coconut oil and clean cotton socks. You should remove the socks and clean your feet as usual first thing in the morning. Repeat this process once a day till your cracked feet are no more.
You can substitute any other vegetable oil for coconut oil if you like. Apply after cleansing your feet with coconut oil before night. If you want to keep as much moisture in your feet as possible while you sleep, you shouldn’t let them completely dry out after a scrubbing.
4. Rub with Menthol
Mentholated rub applied to clean feet before bedtime is another common method of treating cracked feet. After applying the rub, change into a clean pair of socks and bedhead. You can wash your feet as usual first thing in the morning and keep doing so until you are satisfied with the result.
Exfoliating with milk is a pleasant surprise and helps the skin become radiant and youthful. Using milk to get rid of dry foot skin is a good idea because of the lactic acid and alpha hydroxy acids it contains. Soak your feet for 10 minutes in warm water with a cup of milk.
6. Paraffin Wax
Paraffin wax is an excellent method for softening rough skin on the feet and keeping the skin supple and hydrated. Turn on the microwave and melt the paraffin wax, then add the coconut oil in a 1:1 ratio. It needs to be of paste-like consistency. The fissures in your feet can be treated with a thick layer of this paste, followed by clean cotton socks and an overnight nap. You should continue to wash your feet every morning until the fissures in your feet have disappeared.
7. Petroleum Jelly
As a second option, petroleum jelly, which most people already have on hand, can be used to heal dry, cracked feet. After soaking and peeling the dead skin from your feet, apply a thick coating of petroleum jelly to the fissures. Cover with a fresh pair of cotton socks. After removing your socks, you should always wash your feet first thing in the morning.
Because of its moisturizing and hydrating characteristics, Glycerin is an excellent treatment for dry, cracked feet. Mix it with little lemon juice and use it liberally on your feet for great results. Wash it off after around twenty minutes of wearing the socks and shoes. If you want your feet to feel soft and smell nice, try mixing some rose water with the Glycerin and lemon juice. Wash it off after about 20 minutes of having it on your feet. If you want your feet to smell nice while rehydrating in a mixture of Glycerin and lemon juice, try adding some rose water.
9. Oil of Sesame
When applied to dry, cracked feet, sesame oil can hydrate the skin, prevent infection, especially in deep cracks, and stimulate the growth of new skin cells, making it a minor miracle. Put two teaspoons of sesame oil in your foot bath and soak your feet for ten minutes. Before soaking your feet in the water, put some sesame oil into deep cracks.
10. Salt of Epsom
Cracked feet benefit greatly from Epsom salt’s ability to draw out toxins and increase circulation. Soak your feet in an Epsom salt bath for 10 minutes before using a pumice stone to scrub them to get rid of foot pain. After your cracked heels have healed or significantly improved, you should figure out how to keep them from cracking again. Some of the finest habits to keep in mind include frequently moisturizing your feet, selecting a decent pair of shoes, and drinking lots of water to keep your skin hydrated.
Dry, cracked feet can be difficult to treat with regular body creams. Heels that have fissures, or cracks, are an annoyance at best and can cause more issues if not treated. Soothe them by starting a routine of applying lotion to your feet twice daily. Try to choose lotions with a high concentration of moisturizing. To aid in removing dead skin, several moisturizers include skin-softening ingredients like urea, salicylic acid, or alpha hydroxy acid. They could hurt or irritate your skin slightly.
Pay special attention to your heels at bedtime: Soak your feet in warm, soapy water for about 10 minutes, then dry them well. To gently remove dead skin, use a loofah or foot scrubber to rub the heels. At sleep, put on some thin cotton socks after applying an oil-based ointment or petroleum jelly to your feet. Never let dry, cracked heels go untreated, as doing so can lead to even deeper fissures and an increased risk of infection. Talk to your doctor about other treatment choices if self-care techniques don’t improve your condition.