Hospiten Roca podiatrist, Ernesto Lopez, warns of the lack of care given to the feet during the summer season when our feet are exposed for long periods of time. Dry skin on the soles of the feet during the summer months can lead to cracking and wounds that are open to infection and which can, in turn, lead to more serious problems.
Mr. Lopez points to the overuse of inadequate footwear in summer as the main cause of foot and back ailments and makes some recommendations to minimize problems that affect the rest of the body.
He recommends avoiding walking for a long time with open shoes and reminds us that “we should use the right shoe for each occasion and surface we are going to walk on. Overuse of flip flops or ill-fitting shoes can cause ankle and knee injuries, the appearance of claw toes or a change in gait due to the change in pace”..
Sunburn is also common during the summer season, so the specialist advises applying sunscreen to the instep, ankles and toes, and taking care on hot sand, as it can cause burns, which is particularly important in people with diabetes. He also recommends the use of appropriate footwear in public showers and restrooms since these are places where fungi are more prevalent and can cause skin infection.
"It is a good idea to avoid walking barefoot in public places due to the presence of fungi and plantar warts, the most common infections of the feet, which are a result of high temperatures and humidity during the summer," he says.
Mr. Lopez recommends taking precautions and preventing infections caused by high summer temperatures or contact with different external agents, mainly in the most susceptible groups, like children, the elderly, sports people and diabetics, who should be particularly careful as they are at greater risk of injury or infection.
“At this time of year our feet may sweat more than usual and can be uncomfortable. To reduce excessive sweating, use natural fiber socks and open footwear or any of the specific products on the market”, he explains.
He also stresses the importance of using an appropriate size of heel to improve posture and balance and gait. According to the specialist, it is recommended that heel-height be between two and five centimeters.
Regarding nail polishes etc., which are chemical products, Lopez states that they are very aggressive and cause dryness, so he emphasizes that “they should not be used continuously”.
According to Mr. Lopez, foot care has nothing to do with age and he recommends visiting the podiatrist after two years of age for check-ups and to diagnose problems early on.