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Simple Guidelines to maintain Healthy Feet

If in any doubt always seek professional advice

As in all aspects of foot care, prevention is the key. You can help maintain healthy feet by following these rules:

Cut nails straight across
 -
not too short or into the corners, corners can be filed if sharp.
 - If a nail is painful, digging into your skin, or your toe becomes inflamed get it checked out sooner rather than later.
- It is easier to cut nails after a bath or shower because they will be softened.

Moisturise your feet regularly (especially if you have dry skin).
- This reduces the chance of getting painful cracks in the dry skin.

Wash and dry your feet regularly and thoroughly.
- This stops feet getting sweaty and odorous.
 - Drying in between your toes reduces the risk of infection.

Go barefoot in the house (except diabetics and over 60s).
 - In hot weather this stops your feet getting sweaty and smelly.
 - If diabetic or over 60 wear something comfy and supportive, to protect your feet.

Wear a range of different shoes.
- Chose shoes that are supportive, comfortable (do not press/rub feet) and ideally a shoe that fastens to your foot (laces, velcro or a buckle are best).
 - Vary heel height (only wear really high shoes on special occasions for a short period of time.)
 - Wear the right shoes for the job (if you are running wear running shoes, on the beach flip flops or sandals etc).
 - Shop for shoes in the afternoon (your feet swell as the day goes on, if shoes are comfortable in the afternoon they should be comfortable all the time).
- If in doubt ask for advice.

File any hard skin.
 - use a pomestone or file just after showering/bathing if you tend to get lots of hard skin.
 - Once a week is usually enough (too often can make it worse).

Watch out for foot infections.
 - Wear flip flops in communal changing areas, showers and around swimming pools.
 - Check your feet regularly.

Check your feet regularly for changes.
 
- Look for anything unusual and new (cuts, bruises, moles).
 - Look for changes in skin colour and texture.
 - Look for changes in previous cuts, bruises, moles (size, shape, colour).
 - If something worries you get it checked out by a professional.

Keep your feet active.
 -
Regular exercise will keep your feet mobile.
 - Cool down and stretching are important after exercise to keep your feet free from aches and pains.
 - After a long day on your feet putting them up for 10mins and massage helps circulation.

Get help if you need it.
 -
Don't put up with foot pain, feet should not hurt.
 - Basic hygiene and nail cutting may be all that's needed to keep your feet in good health.
 - But when normal feet turn into problem feet, it's best to seek professional help.

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