Causes, Signs, Solutions and Prevention
What are dry feet?
- Dry feet are characterised by rough and dehydrated skin on the feet.
- The skin texture of dry feet often feels flaky and coarse
- Cracks and fissures may also appear on the heels due to dry feet
What causes dry feet?
The skin on the feet is composed of several sweat glands, but no oil glands – making it more susceptible to being dehydrated, dry and sensitive.
The feet’s inability to maintain moisture can be increased by factors such as wearing inappropriate shoes, having poor foot hygiene, being exposed
to dry air and wind, and bathing frequently in hot water.
What are the signs of dry feet?
In general, dry feet appear and feel scaly, dull and rough. There are some cases where the feet may also be itchy and fine lines can become
apparent along the surface and across the heels.
What are the solutions for dry feet?
Treating dry feet can be done by moisturising the skin frequently. It is important, however, to choose the right kind of moisturiser specifically
made for the feet to ensure good results. You can also use a foot mask product to help nourish your feet.
How to manage dry feet
Consult a health professional if severe cracks in the feet appear due to dry feet.
How to prevent dry feet
Stay hydrated to keep your skin hydrated
Wear shoes that are well-fitted and appropriate for the chosen activity.
Don’t walk on harsh or rough surfaces barefoot.
When taking a bath, it is advisable to use lukewarm water. Water that is too hot or too cold may cause dryness in the skin of the feet.
Avoid using heavily fragrant soap and bath products, as the chemicals found inside can also dry your skin.
Gently pat the feet dry instead of rubbing them hard with a towel.
Apply a foot moisturiser daily.
Wear bed socks after applying a foot cream at night to retain moisture.
Optimising your general foot health
A simple maintenance routine can help to keep the skin on your feet supple and hydrated.
Daily care: Wash and dry your feet thoroughly and moisturise every day
Footwear: Ensure that your shoes fit properly (both in width and length) and are right for your activity.
Appearance: Check the appearance of your feet regularly for any changes.
Movement and flexibility: Check that you can move your feet easily, without discomfort; some simple stretches may help.
Referral: Speak with your pharmacist or podiatrist if you have any concerns.
References and Sources
1. Looking after your skin in winter. HealthEngine Network.
https://healthengine.com.au/info/looking-after-your-skin-in-winter. Date accessed: 9 March 2020.
2. Best Remedies for dry skin on the feet. Medical News Today.
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324909. Date accessed: 9 March 2020.