What Your Feet Say about Your Health

Most of us don’t give a lot of thought to our feet. They pretty much exist to be stuffed into a pair of shoes or to carry us from point A to point B. However, according to podiatrists there’s a lot of health information to be gleaned from our tootsies. Here are some of the most common ways that your feet report bad health. 

Foot behavior: A sore on the bottom of your foot that won’t heal

What it can mean: This is a major clue that you may have diabetes. High blood glucose levels can lead to foot damage that results in scrapes, scratches or friction that can lead to infection if they’re not treated in time. If you have an unexplained ulcer on your foot, especially one that’s accompanied by increased thirst and urination, then it’s time to see your physician.

Foot behavior: Numbness in your feet

What it can mean: If your feet are numb or if they’re always feeling like they’re full of pins and needles, it could be a sign of damage to the peripheral nervous system. It can result for a variety of reasons, particularly alcoholism, diabetes, or chemotherapy. If you have the same symptoms in your hands you’re at an even increased risk. Contact your doctor, especially if you’re not a heavy drinker.

Foot behavior: Pitted toenails

40+60 Feet, Euw.

What it can mean: If you have tiny holes in your toenails and you also have psoriasis, you may be looking at the result of psoriatic arthritis, a disorder which affects both the joints and the skin. If you have pitted, pocked nails on your fingers or toes, along with redness and inflammation, you may be suffering from psoriatic arthritis.

Foot behavior: Dry, flaky feet

What it can mean: Athlete’s foot. You don’t have to hang out in locker rooms to catch athlete’s foot. The fungus thrives in warm, moist places and the first signs that you have it are itchy, flaking feet. If this sounds familiar it’s important to get treatment as soon as possible. Athlete’s foot progresses to inflammation and blisters if left untreated.

Foot behavior: Stinkiness

What it can mean: There are a variety of reasons why your feet may smell, but it’s usually the result of a trivial matter. Your feet have more than 500,000 sweat glands between them- more than any other part of your body- and some people tend to sweat more than others do. If your shoes are getting a little ripe, wash them in hot water before applying antiperspirant to them. Prevent swamp foot by washing your feet regularly, drying them thoroughly and sticking to man-made materials for your socks.

Your feet are a great indicator of your health. If your feet are painful or swollen contact your chiropractic team. You may be suffering from an injury or illness that requires immediate medical care.


Story creditVideo credit, Photo credit: 40+60 Feet, Euw. by bark. Used under a Creative Commons license.

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