Like the rest of your body it is important to pay proper attention to your feet. In the cold weather heels dry and crack easily. Apart from looking ugly, cracked heels are also really painful. The rough patches on your skin can make wearing shoes and walking difficult.
Cracked feet also known as heel fissures are commonly seen in people of all age groups. When the cracks in the heels are deep, they often split the skin wide open and can cause bleeding and infection.
Causes of cracked heels:
- Cold and dry weather
- Taking hot baths or showers
- Dehydration or not drinking enough weather
- Not moisturizing your heels
Regular care for cracked heels:
Before going to bed soak your feet in a bucket of hot water for 20 minutes. Hot water helps to soften the dead skin on the heels. Gently rub the heel with a pumice stone to remove dead cells. Wash your feet well with clean water and massage a good moisturizing cream into the skin.
Well Known Dermatologist Dr Shankar Sawant from Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani hospital adds “Do not use metal scrubber as they may be harsh for your skin. Overusing the scrubber (more than once a week) can lead to thick skin. Moisturize your skin and wear cotton socks before going to sleep. Keeping the heels covered with cream will keep the skin soft and prevent them from cracking.”
“To prevent cracked heels apply oil on your feet before bath and apply a moisturizing cream after bath. This helps to lock in moisture and keep the skin soft,” adds Dr Patil from Fortis.
Do’s and Don’ts:
- Drink lots of water to keep your skin hydrated as dry skin and dehydration can cause cracked feet or make then worse.
- Opt for cushioned sole shoes that provide plenty of support. Thin soles or wrong pair of heels makes the bases of your feet work harder and increases the chances of developing a cracked heel.
- Avoid wearing open heeled or high heeled shoes as these can make heels drier or more painful.
- Pamper your feet by going to foot spas or getting pedicure done regularly.
- Avoid staying barefoot at home, use slipper when even walking inside the house to keep the feet soft and supple.
- Never use scissors, cuticle cutter for removing the dry skin on your heels. You may cause additional injury.
Home remedies for cracked heels:
- Scrub your feet with homemade scrub made from 4 tbsp salt mixed with ½ cup of oil (baby oil or coconut oil) and massage your cracked heels with oil or moisturizing lotion.
- Take some paraffin wax and mustard oil and heat them to make a paste like formation. After soaking your feet in warm water and scrubbing the dry skin off, apply this paste on your cracked heels and then wear a pair of socks.
- Applying mashed banana pulp on the affected area also helps in fast healing
- Take a mixture of tulsi, camphor and turmeric in equal parts and mix it with aloe vera gel. Apply this paste on your heels.
Cracked heels can be treated easily and affordably, however if you do not see any home remedies working on your cracked heels, it is advisable to visit a doctor and take proper treatment.