Most of us, every now and then, might experience an episode of stinky feet after a long day of hiking or trudging unprepared through an unexpected downpour. But when aggressive foot odor becomes a persistent problem, it can even put a strain on relationships!
There’s good news, however. Most cases of stinky feet can be corrected and prevented by employing a few simple strategies. You don’t have to be embarrassed—some people simply sweat more than others and need to take more precautions—but you should be serious about getting better.
For starters, let’s neutralize the immediate problem. A wide variety of anti-perspirant, anti-odor, and/or antifungal powders, creams, or sprays are available over the counter to help mitigate excessive sweating and odor on the feet. You can even use baking soda, sprinkled in shoes, to eliminate some of the bacteria that cause foot odor when they interact with sweat.
Keeping the odor away once it’s gone, however, may require some different approaches to hygiene and footwear. When it comes to:
Bathing — You should make sure to wash feet at least daily with soap and water. Dry thoroughly, including between the toes, and give them a chance to air out a bit before slipping into any socks or shoes.
Socks — Stick to breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics. At minimum, you should be putting on a fresh, clean pair a minimum of once per day. If you sweat profusely, you may need to change more frequently. It may be a good idea to bring a fresh pair to work or school just in case.
Shoes — Again, breathable fabrics for the uppers are a good choice, such as leather or mesh sneakers. Because they’re dark and cramped, shoes often need extra time to air out between uses, so it helps to have at least 2 pairs that you can switch between every other day.
If you follow these tips and are still having problems, it might be time to make an appointment with the team at North Austin Foot & Ankle Institute. An examination may provide insight on other treatment options, possibly including prescription strength medications or more specific recommendations for footwear or other products. To come see us in Round Rock or Cedar Park, TX, please call today at (512) 593-2949, or fill out our online contact form.