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Happy Feet

HAPPY FEET 

Most of us walk between 3,000 – 4,000 steps every day.  That equates to 35,000 miles in a lifetime.  However, for our health’s sake we should aim for 10,000 steps a day!  So it stands to reason that our feet sometimes develop lumps and bumps as a result of this activity.   Your feet may be in need of a little TLC to ensure they are fit for spring especially following a winter hidden away in boots.  So spend time and pamper them or treat yourself to a pedicure to keep your toes in tip top condition.”

 

Learn how to put a spring in your step!  We tend to think that all flat shoes are good for our feet and many of us are wearing fashionable ballet pumps and canvas shoes at the moment.  I must admit I am, but they have very thin soles and offer little or no support.  They can also change the way you walk and encourage your arches to drop.  As a result more strain may be put on your knees and back.  For everyday, a shoe with a low broad heel is a more comfortable option.

 

A change is as good as a rest, and some shoes can exacerbate many common foot complaints.  If like me you’re out all day and you want to wear heels because of the occasion, make sure you keep a flat pair of shoes in your handbag to change into if your feet become uncomfortable.  When you feel pain act fast, because it’s a fact the discomfort will show in your face!  So don’t become a slave to fashion - listen to your body and change what you are wearing. Whew...what a relief...you’ll feel so much better!

Have you got bunions like onions?  If so you are not alone- up to 50% of women are thought to have bunions to some extent.   So don’t be embarrassed it is one of the most common foot complaints.   It’s caused when the bone under the first toe becomes displaced. The big toe tends to shift towards the smaller toes, resulting in a bunion on one side.  And over time these two toes can also become crossed.   In warm conditions a bunion can swell, become red and tender and this can impact on the way the sufferer walks.

 
Wearing high heels with pointed toes are particularly bad for suffers of bunions as are any restrictive winter boots and shoes - because they keep the bunions enclosed - adding to the pain.  A bunion can cause the big toe to put pressure on the adjacent toe, resulting in an ingrown toenail.
Wear well-fitting shoes or sandals or try padding, but if you are still in discomfort seek help from your podiatrist or doctor.  Alternative options such as surgery may need to be considered.

 

Time to consider our toes and anyone who has had an in growing toenail will know how painful this can be. An ingrown toenail is caused by the nail growing directly into the skin, often as a result of cutting the nail too short and not cutting it straight across. This can often result in an infection and needs looking at by a professional. Symptoms include swelling, redness, and if there is infection the toe can become very painful.  Of course proper nail care is a must, and it’s important to wear well-fitting shoes, including sports shoes. Seek medical help to treat the condition and reduce risk of infection.

 

Aim to keep your feet happy!  Have you ever noticed that when your legs and feet feel tired, your whole body feels tired and achy, and you slow down?   It's a though your total well-being is dependent on the fitness of your limbs. About half the population suffer from some kind of leg problems such as tired, aching legs and about a quarter seek treatment for such conditions as varicose veins or leg ulcers.

Good circulation is important in preventing leg problems, like tiredness and varicose veins.   The blood that flows into the lower leg is helped back to the heart by the calf muscle acting as a pump when we exercise, and by the one way valves in the veins.   However, if the veins become damaged or the valves stop working properly and blood can gather in the lower limb causing swollen ankles and tired, aching legs.   If the problem is not treated varicose veins can occur and in extreme cases a venous leg ulcer can result.

Simple but brisk walking is a natural way to improve your circulation.

 

You may need to come down from the dizzy heights!  Most of us like to dress up from time to time and this includes putting on our fashionable heels.  But high heels can also cause you problems; they put pressure on the ball of your foot, as well as weakening the ankle area.  Although they create a natural arch, they also mean your foot is constantly at an angle. When you wear high heels it shortens the calf muscles (back of the lower leg) and you notice the backs of your legs feel stiff when you take them off.  So OK for high days and holidays, but not for every day if you want your legs and back to stay strong and healthy. 

 

 


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