Summer is here! And we Northern Arizonans especially adore the extra sunshine. With majestic mountainscapes of Douglas Firs that turn into windy rivers and creeks, we dream of the ultimate outdoor adventure. Could a Prescott summer ever go wrong, though? Stay in tip-top shape with a solid summer foot care routine.
During the winter, you can easily hide your paws behind closed toe shoes. Then there’s summer, and your tootsies start to sweat. You see sandal-clad feet everywhere, but if you unleashed your seeming monsters, you might cause a scare… Don’t let this be your plan! Begin your summer foot care regimen like it’s nobody’s business.
We know it feels great to walk outdoors without those burdensome shoes! Understand, though, that a lack of protection against the elements can cause injuries.
While wandering barefoot, it’s key to remain aware of your surroundings. Insects can sting or bite, and you can more easily contract things like athlete’s foot or plantar warts when you least expect it.
We recommend that you limit your time outside in this way or opt for a trusty pair of sandals!
Flip flops are perfect for those times at the pool when you need to step out of the water for a quick moment. Other than between locker rooms to the pool, you should only wear these beloved shoes when you would otherwise walk barefoot.
In this way, wearing flip flops protects you from plantar warts and the nasty fungus that causes athlete’s foot. Puncture injuries are less likely, too.
You can definitely sunburn your feet if you’re not careful! Exposing your feet to the sun with little protection can cause melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer.
What’s amazing is that you have the power to prevent this from happening. Just as long as you consistently administer sunscreen to the tops and bottoms of your feet, you’re all set. (Remember that you will need to reapply sunscreen to your feet after you’ve been in the water.)
Be sure that your kiddos follow this advice, too!
There’s no doubt that our feet provide us with the extraordinary ability to see the world, which is why we love this anonymous quote, “If we were meant to stay in one place we’d have roots instead of feet.”
With this in mind, healthy ankles and feet are a necessity while you conduct your summertime exploring!
Here are our tried-and-true summer foot care tips for your escapades:
• Don’t bring those new shoes on your vacation. You know the blisters and pain you experience after breaking in a new pair of shoes. Imagine this while you’re walking on a miles-long trail or a creaky boardwalk with no end in sight. If you’re planning on walking a great deal this summer, we highly recommend that you feel your best! Be sure to grab a pair of shoes that you know will support you and provide comfort, each step of the way.
• Bring along a travel size first aid kit. Seriously, you never know what can happen. Though you can take extra precautions, blisters and scrapes are sometimes inevitable. If a blister happens, that’s okay! Just pick up your trusty first aid kit, and cover the wound with an antibiotic cream first and then a band-aid.
Did you know that you can clean your feet with saline solution? Saline solution is salt water after all, and salt is a naturally antibacterial compound that can help you heal faster. If a scrape or blister occurs, you can use this unique solution from your first aid kit to clean the injury. (Isn’t that cool?)
A puncture wound after stepping on something sharp can have potentially detrimental outcomes. Please see a podiatrist within 24 hours so that the injury can be professionally cleaned (no one wants an infection!).
• Get out and stretch. Traveling long distance can require that we sit for an extensive period of time. If you’ve been like this for at least two hours, stop the car, and get out to stretch and walk around a bit. Doing this helps keep blood from pooling into your feet and ankles, and therefore, causing swelling, which can be unpleasant.
• Don’t forget about the kids! Check their shoes for the right fit. There’s nothing more annoying than shoes that don’t fit. With children, their feet are prone to growth spurts, so before you venture out this summer, ensure that their shoes are neither too small or big. You want just the right amount of space for their toes to wiggle but not too much anywhere else.
Please know that we see you and understand! Bunions are certainly painful and not so great to look at, but they are treatable.
A bunion is a deformity in the foot that materializes when your shoes are too tight. Due to genetics, some people are more prone to develop these. You can learn more about bunions here.
Depending on the severity of the bunion, we can either correct with:
• Modifications to your shoes or
• Surgery if the condition is too far from saving with modifications alone.