For those who spend a lot of time standing or walking, painful feet may become an unfortunate reality. Taking time to treat painful feet can help soothe the aches and pains, and may help prevent more serious conditions. A healthy soak for feet designed to help increase circulation, promote muscle relaxation, and soften the skin, can help make feet feel better both inside and out. However, chronic pain should be reported to a doctor or podiatrist, and those with diabetes in particular should consult with a physician before using any type of product or method to treat painful feet. Swollen feet, for example, are normal in hot and humid weather, but can also be a sign of a serious medical condition. As with any physical condition, it is wise to seek the advice of a physician or podiatrist if painful conditions such as swelling, muscle cramps, or others continue for more than a few days.
Some conditions may be treated easily with a foot ache soak followed by foot lotion. Calluses and corns are two such examples. Calluses are a build-up of thick skin that develops over time, most often on the heels. As our bodies age, the padding in the feet becomes thinner and the development of calluses is one way the body adapts to this change. Other areas of the foot may also develop calluses, such as the ball of the foot. Because calluses can signal other, more serious foot problems, it is wise to seek the assistance of a podiatrist to treat painful feet. A doctor is also the best person to remove very thick and/or painful calluses. For a minor callus buildup, a healthy soak for feet can be used to soften the skin, which can then be gently removed using a pumice stone or similar product. This treatment, followed by a revitalizing foot lotion can help relieve and treat painful feet. Inserting padding in the shoes at the point of the callus can also aid in reducing foot pain.
Corns are one of the more common foot ailments, and tend to show up most often in people under thirty and in women. This is likely because of the shoe styles worn, which can put pressure on the toes. Corns are small, concentrated calluses that usually develop around the toes where friction occurs most, such as the tops, around joints, and in between. To treat painful feet resulting from corns and to help prevent corns from developing, use a foot ache soak on a daily basis. Following the foot soak, corns can be gently removed using a pumice stone, followed by a foot lotion. This easy, preventative program, combined with shoes that do not pinch the toes and special pads over the corns, is an effective method to treat painful feet. It is also a nice, relaxing way to end the day.
For general foot aches and pains, a healthy foot ache soak combining a range of treatment components can aid in the reduction of normal swelling, help reduce muscle fatigue, lessen muscle soreness, and rejuvenate the feet. Products that incorporate various botanicals, for example, can create a foot soak that positively affect both mind and body and treat painful feet. Research shows that scents have a direct impact on our thoughts and emotions, and the use of botanicals in a foot soak offers both mental and physical benefits. Botanicals have long been used in combination with massage therapy to promote feelings of well-being, promote health, and as therapeutic tools. The same concepts apply when using botanicals in combination with a soak to treat painful feet. Foot soaks can also be useful in the treatment and prevention of other conditions such as athletes foot and in promoting overall foot health.
Peppermint, for example, is useful in clearing the mind and emotions (which can be very welcome after a long day on the job), relieves muscle aches, and is often used to treat painful feet. Combinations of lavender, rosemary, and juniper, are used to relive pain and in sports medicine. Other blends, such as peppermint, rosemary, and geranium are used not only to treat pain but also to uplift and strengthen.
For a relaxing foot soak, use cool or warm water and soak your feet for about fifteen minutes. Pat the feet dry rather than rubbing them with a towel (although a rough towel can be in replace of a pumice stone for mild calluses or corns). When feet are dry, apply a foot lotion.
by Vincent Platania
Fuller Brush Products
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