The care of the foot is important in all of us especially if a person has poor circulation, diabetes or is elderly.

Feet should be washed daily with a mild soap and warm water. Dry thoroughly particularly between the toes. Do not rub vigorously. Keep the skin soft by using 10% glycerine in sorbelene cream. A gentle alcohol rub may be necessary perhaps once a week if the feet become tender.

Toe nails should always be cut straight across and if possible, particularly in the case of diabetes, a podiatrist should look after the regular cutting and attention to toes, toe nails, corns and calluses.

Care should be taken in the purchase of shoes which should accommodate the toes comfortably with no pressure points on the front and back. be careful with the heel height. If too high there is tendency to force down onto the toes. Stockings or socks should fit snugly with no wrinkling.

A doctor should be consulted if there is any abrasion or break in the skin. Any sign of inflammation should be immediately checked as there is always the possibility of ulcers or gangrene eventuating, particularly in people with diabetes.

Inflammation between the toes is always a worry and can be due to a fungus which necessitates medically prescribed fungal creams with or without hydrocortisone.

Circular garters which impair the circulation to the feet should not be worn. Do not sit with crossed legs. Be careful as they can be dangerous if circulation is poor. Extreme cold can be as dangerous as extreme heat. In winter wear comfortable and warm stockings or socks. At night bed clothes should not weigh down on the feet.

Smoking is dangerous to the feet as it reduces the circulation by narrowing the small blood vessels and causing them to become blocked.

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