Most people experience foot pain at some time or another. Yet according to the American Podiatric Medical Association, many women—especially young women—never see a podiatrist.
If your feet are causing you trouble, see a podiatrist so he or she can examine your feet and determine the best treatment. You can also try these do-it-yourself treatments:
- Calluses and corns are thick, protective layers of dead skin on the heels or toes caused by rubbing or friction. Some people experience discomfort, but generally, corns and calluses are just plain unsightly.
Treatment: Wear felted foot pads in areas of friction to prevent rubbing and irritation.
- Blisters are small pockets of fluid caused by friction from shoes that don’t fit or are too stiff.
Treatment: Keep your feet dry and wear socks and shoes that fit. Never pop a blister, as that could cause infection. Instead, apply an over-the-counter (OTC) antibiotic ointment and cover it with a bandage. If the blister breaks on its own, wash it, cover it with an antiseptic and put on a new bandage.
- Plantar fasciitis is pain on the bottom of the heel or in the arch. The condition is caused by an overgrowth of bone on the heel, an imbalance of muscles, high or low arches, poorly fitting shoes, excessive physical activity or trauma to the foot.
Treatment: Stretch your feet during the day and wear supportive shoes that have plenty of cushioning.
- Bunions are swollen or painful bumps at the base of the big toe. Bunions develop for many reasons, but the most common culprit is wearing shoes that don’t fit properly.
Treatment: Stay away from pointy and narrow-toed shoes. If you have bunions or plantar fasciitis, your podiatrist may prescribe anti-inflammatory medicines or custom-made arch supports to wear in your shoes.