Winter feet get a pounding. It’s cold, so they get covered up with socks or tights, then put straight into winter boots or shoes. They never seem to be able to just breathe.
At Shore Footed Podiatry in Milford we see a lot more corns between toes and ingrowing nails during the cooler months. Our feet get used to the wider space that comes with sandals and jandals, then with socks and closed in shoes the toes press against each other causing interdigital corns. These don't often look like much to the observer, but they can be really sore.
Nice wide fitting footwear, that is also orthotic friendly, and keeping heel height to a low level will also reduce the amount of pressure on the toes. With more constricted space, the nails need to be kept nice and short and slightly rounded, and if you can't reach them fully or don't have the right nippers, then we can cut and shape the nails, using fully sterilised equipment.
Runner's feet usually fare better in winter than summer as activity levels reduce, but we still see a fair few cases of plantar fasciitis as people wear old, loose flat slippers around the house. Australian brand Vionic are lovely slippers of a great quality. Their inbuilt arch support and robust outer soles also enable you to nip out to the postbox happily.
If you are seeking alternative exercise options, such as going to the swimming pool, remember to wear jandals as warm moist environments can host viruses like verrucae. These common wart-like lesions can be treated at the clinic using acids and freezing, but prevention is always recommended.
Older folk, or those who are not so active can be susceptible to chilblains which can be tingly or itchy, and the toes flush red. The best course of action is to keep them at a steady temperature. Don’t put them in hot water or close to the fire, as the poor blood vessels will open rapidly and make the feet burn. Warm natural fibre socks and good footwear is best; don't go barefoot.
Those unsightly cracks in the heels often improve over winter due to the body's moisture being kept in the shoe, but a visit to the clinic can be a good idea to remove the thick build-up, making them fresh for summer.
At Shore Footed Podiatry we help and advise on all foot problems, winter or summer and our well-stocked shoe shop is open seven days. Our expert team of podiatrists, can help with all your foot complaints, and can prescribe orthotics. Call us to make an appointment or drop in to browse our footwear ranges.
- Jonathan and Wendy Hagon
Shore Footed Podiatry, 157 Kitchener Road, Milford
Near the junction with Shakespeare Road
09 489 1011 www.shorefootedpodiatry.co.nz