Just because your feet are usually covered due to cooler weather it doesn't mean their appearance should fall by the wayside. We recommend keeping toenails trimmed appropriately to avoid ingrown toenails and increased pressure on the toes. In addition feet tend to dry out in the alternating heat and cold of wintertime, which can cause cracks and peeling. We recommend using lotion at least once a day to prevent irritation or infection from dry cracked skin.
If you are going to spend time in a cooler area, such as northern Arizona, it woucl be a good investment to buy some decent winter shoes. A good winter shoe should be waterproof, have enough room to fit two pairs of socks, and have a gripping sole to prevent slips and falls.
Keeping feet warm and dry with layered socks can be difficult, here’s a good trick to try. The layer of socks next to your skin should be a light synthetic 'wick' sock. This layer can then transfer moisture to a thicker wool outer sock, where it is absorbed and can be evaporated. Cotton socks absorb moisture and do not transfer it. This makes for a soggy environment, which ultimately makes the feet cold and wet and sets them up for frostbite.
If you are traveling to Northern Arizona or any other colder region, be certain anywhere you walk outside is free of ice. Clear pavement can be covered in ice you may not be able to see. Unfortunately with ice a good shoe alone won't be able to protect you. Awareness and simple prevention such as keeping a hand on a handrail and salting the icy areas can be critical. Falling and breaking a bone or causing a sprain is not a good way to enjoy the winter.
Even with fancy shoes and socks staying out in the cold too long can lead to numbness and pain in the foot and toes, which could mean the beginnings of frostbite. Warm towels and water should be used to warm the affected area at the first sign of numbness.
If you experience any type of foot issue due to winter weather, please call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Gary Friedlander or Dr. Jay Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists. Our office would like to get you back on your feet!