My name is Billy Kanter, and I am excited to share with you all sorts of tips and facts about caring for your feet. Being a Certified Pedorthist, I hope I can share some knowledge with all of you. This week we are going to focus on caring for your feet in the cold winter months. Whether you're slogging through deep snow and sub-zero temperatures in the north, or contending with dampness, chill, and muddy conditions in the south, it's important to take care of your feet all winter long. You'll want them to be healthy and ready for action when spring finally arrives. Below are a couple tips I live by for keeping your feet right, while still staying active during winter.
Have the Proper Footwear for your Winter Activities:
Winter is skiing and snowboarding season. It may seem pretty straight forward, but never ski or snowboard in footwear other than ski boots specifically designed for that purpose. Additionally, make sure your boots fit properly; you should be able to wiggle your toes, but the boots should immobilize the heel, instep, and ball of your foot. You can also use orthotics to help control the foot's movement inside the boots.
Keep your Boots Dry
Boots are must-have footwear in winter climates, especially when dealing with winter precipitation. Between the waterproof material of the boots themselves and the warm socks you wear to keep toes toasty, you may find your feet sweat a lot. Damp, sweaty feet can chill more easily and are more prone to bacterial infections. To keep feet clean and dry, consider using foot powder inside socks and incorporating extra foot baths into your foot care regimen this winter.
Make Sure you Have the Proper Fit
Be size smart. It may be tempting to buy pricey specialty footwear (like winter boots or ski boots) for kids in a slightly larger size, thinking they'll be able to get two seasons of wear out of them. But unlike coats that kids can grow into, footwear needs to fit properly right away. Properly fitted skates and boots can help prevent blisters, chafing, and ankle or foot injuries. Likewise, if socks are too small, they can force toes to bunch together, and that friction can cause painful blisters or corns.
Finally—and although this one seems like it should go without saying, it bears spelling out—don't try to tip-toe through winter snow, ice, and temperatures in summer-appropriate footwear. "More than one news show across the country aired images of people in sneakers, sandals, and even flip-flops during the severe cold snap that hit the country in early January," Dr. Garoufalis said. "Exposing feet to extreme temperatures means risking frostbite and injury. Choose winter footwear that will keep your feet warm, dry, and well-supported."
I hope you all enjoyed these tips, I look forward to sharing even more in the near future.
Billy Kanter CPED