Dry skin on the feet is a very common problem and is more than a cosmetic issue. Excessively dry skin may cause cracks, or skin fissures, on the heels or soles. Along with being unsightly, this condition can cause itching, pain, a rash or even an infection.
Foot Pain From Dry Skin
Heat and humidity changes such as indoor heating in colder locations can cause water loss from the skin and may thicken the top layer. Some soaps can also remove the skin’s protective oils. Many liquid soaps contain alcohol which further dries skin.
Aging brings metabolic and hormonal changes that cause reduced cell turnover and skin thickening. As we age, the fat pad on the bottom of the foot thins, resulting in thicker, drier cracked skin. Some skin conditions such as athlete’s foot, psoriasis, and rashes caused by an allergy can produce thick and dry skin on the foot, as can diabetes, hypothyroidism, and certain vitamin or fatty acid deficiencies.
Treating Dry Skin on the Feet
If you have tried applying creams and lotions to your dry skin and the problem persists, give us a call. We can help identify the cause of your dry skin and prescribe special creams for severely dry skin if necessary. To prevent a recurrence of excessively dry skin on your feet:
- Apply lanolin or cocoa butter which you can find over the counter.
- Switch to hypoallergenic skin products or those that are formulated for sensitive skin.
- After bathing, use a foot file or pumice stone on rough areas on the soles of your feet to prevent calluses. Use a loofah sponge for the top of the foot.
- Increase your intake of essential fatty acids by adding walnuts, canola oil, and flaxseed oil to your diet.
- Other supplements can also help, with the approval of your doctor.
- Limit baths and showers to 5-10 minutes.
- Use a gentle, fragrance-free cleanser.
- Moisturize within 5 minutes of bathing.
- Before bed, apply plain petroleum jelly.
- Protect your heels.
- Wear the proper shoes.
Dead skin on the bottom of your foot may appear dry, cracked, or loose or hanging. It’s usually not painful unless it’s a result of athlete’s foot, eczema, or another type of infection. If you suspect that’s the case, see your doctor for treatment. If you are experiencing foot pain, or notice any kind of rash or irritation, visit one of our offices and let us take a look. Contact us to set up your appointment.
Don’t Let Foot Pain Get You Down CONTACT US:
Dr. Manooj Prasad at Garden State Foot & Ankle Group of Toms River is a highly-experienced podiatrist with an ardent mission to help those suffering from foot, ankle, and lower leg issues. He offers personalized care while considering each patient’s individual lifestyle needs so that the best possible treatment can be administered. Based in both Essex County and Ocean County in New Jersey, service towns include Toms River, Jackson, Belleville, Montclair, Lakewood, Cedar Grove, Caldwell, Manchester, Millburn, Livingston, Lakehurst, and many more! For more information, you can contact us today at (732)557-9900 (Toms River) or (973)450-3035 (Belleville) or check out our website.