There’s nothing quite like the experience of kicking off the wooly socks and heavy boots and feeling the summer sun and breeze on your feet and skin after a long, dark winter.
Whilst we all look forward to those summer days ahead in Ireland or even abroad, to kick off our shoes and relax, our feet might not be so keen. We always have to be mindful of our foot health. With added heat and humidity on holidays, paired with unsupportive shoes and more time spent barefoot, we can often forget the potential problems that can occur for you (and your podiatrist).
We have some helpful tips for you to ‘bare in mind’ so you can start summer on the ‘right foot’ this year!
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We share a few reminders and tips to ensure you enjoy your holiday with no hiccups. However, if you have been diagnosed with high-risk* feet, please seek additional professional advice from your podiatrist or GP.
Packing Check List
Here is a handy check-list for packing;
- Sterile bandages – for covering minor cuts and scrapes
- Antiseptic cream – to treat any skin injury
- Emollient-enriched cream – to hydrate feet
Preparing for your Holiday
If you suspect any foot problems prior to your upcoming holiday, ensure you make an appointment with your podiatrist, in order to get the best advice and treatment.
While on Holiday
Never walk barefoot. It exposes the feet to the danger of injury and sun damage.
Never buy a new pair of shoes before a holiday, make sure they fit properly and are broken in. Check feet daily as feet may swell in hotter climates. Look for redness, markings on the feet and change footwear if needed. This includes keeping the feet protected by wearing flip flops or sandals around the pool or at the beach. The poolside tiles can be very hot and burn the soles of your feet. If you are swimming remember that you still need to protect your feet.
Remember to apply sunscreen all over your feet, especially the tops and fronts of ankles, and don’t forget to reapply after you’ve been in the water.
If you injure your foot or ankle, seek medical assistance. If you have a minor injury like a break in the skin or blister, here are the steps to care;
- Do not burst blisters
- Rinse the area with lukewarm salty water
- Gently clean the area
- Cover with dry sterile dressings and keep the area dry
- Check it next day and redress
- If the area is red, hot and swollen, seek medical advice as you may have an infection and require an antibiotic
- Do not wait until you come home to seek medical advice
Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Drinking water will not only help with overall health but will also minimize any foot swelling caused by the heat.
Keep the blood flowing with periodic ankle flexes, toe wiggles, and calf stretches. When you are next with your podiatrist, they can show you the best exercises to do, especially while flying.
Finally, contact your Podiatrist/GP on arrival home if you have any concerns about your feet after a holiday.
*high-risk – defined as a reduction in vibration and monofilament sensation and -the absence of foot pulses. If there is a previous history of ulceration or lower limb amputation or Charcot neuroarthropathy then the foot is classified as high risk.