We see an upswing of dry feet in the winter, but some patients have dry feet regularly based on certain outside factors. They may have a thyroid or pituitary condition, for example. Many medications can also cause dryness as a side effect.
Otherwise, just the simple fact that our environs can be more parched during winter can be enough to cause dry feet. In addition to generally dryer air outdoors, we can also suck moisture out of our homes through our heaters.
And sorry to tell you this, but if you like taking long, steaming showers in the winter, that can be drawing moisture from your feet as well! We swear, nothing’s fair.
Dry feet are not comfortable and don’t look appealing, but a bigger issue is when dryness leads to cracks or fissures in the feet. These can be especially painful, as well as leave the feet more open to infection.
Whenever the body is not able to do its job (in this case, staying moisturized), you have to do it for yourself.
Making a few changes at home can help. For example, get a cool mist humidifier (and maintain it well so it doesn’t start spewing a fine spray of germs throughout your house). You might also want to limit the time and temperature in your shower.
But perhaps the most impactful change you can make is starting a moisturizing regimen. The best time to moisturize your feet is when they are damp, so right after a (cooler, shorter) shower is a good opportunity. Just before bed is also a good time, and you can place a pair of old socks over your feet to help the moisturizer stay against them.
What kind of moisturizer is best? Look for ingredients such as glycerin and hyaluronic acid, which help draw water into the skin. There are a host of other ingredients in many moisturizers, including fragrances, exfoliators, and the like. As long as what you use moisturizes your feet and doesn’t cause any irritation, it’s likely a good call!
In fact, you can even make your own moisturizer if you’d like. Some of our patients do, using paraffin and basic oils. Once again, if it works, go to town! Read the ingredients on some naturally based lotions and see if you can copy it.
Stay Warm and Wet (Well, Moisturized, We Mean)
If you take measures to improve the warmth and moisture of your feet and things just aren’t working that well, our Indianapolis office is here to help! We can handle a wide variety of problems concerning your skin and nails.
Call us at (317) 545-0505 to schedule an appointment with us. If you prefer to contact us electronically instead, our online contact form is always open. Just fill it out and a member of our staff will respond to you during our normal business hours.