Dry Cracked Feet and How To Fix Them
Dry cracked feet can be a problem any time of the year. Whether it’s summer and you are embarrassed by your cracked heels when wearing sandals or going barefoot, or it’s the dead of winter, it’s important to know how to fix dry cracked feet both for appearances and your health.
Why do you have dry cracked feet?
Before talking about how to treat your dry cracked feet, including the results of a new study, it’s important to understand why many people have this problem. One reason is that unlike the skin on the rest of your body, the skin on your feet does not have any oil glands, which makes them susceptible to dryness.
Another major reason for dry feet is the presence of athlete’s foot or diabetes, both of which are associated with xerosis (dry skin). Older adults also are more likely to have dry feet, especially cracked heels, because the skin loses moisture with age.
In addition to these basic reasons for dry cracked feet, there are lifestyle habits and environmental conditions that contribute to the problem. For example:
- Use of harsh, non-moisturizing soaps or bubble bath
- Prolonged exposure of the feet to the sun (especially in the summer)
- Taking excessively hot baths or showers
- Use of saunas or hot tubs
- Exposure to cold weather
- Living or working in an environment with forced air heat and low humidity
- Failure to routinely moisturize the feet
- Wearing footwear that irritates or rubs the skin or that cause your feet to sweat excessively
How to treat dry cracked feet
The first remedy people think of for dry cracked feet is body lotion, but you may actually make the condition worse. Why? Because many body lotions contain alcohol, which has a drying effect.
To help treat or prevent dry cracked feet, here are some solutions. You should consult your healthcare provider before using any remedies, especially if you have diabetes, are elderly, or your feet are significantly dry and cracked.