Kansas City winters can be especially dry! Many of our patients have issues with dry, cracked skin on their feet this time of year. If left untreated, it can become significantly painful. And cracked skin can cause a whole host of other issues, including wounds and infections. The dry weather along with indoor heating and standing in place for extended periods make for a perfect storm of pressure and dry skin. This can result in deeply cracked heels. The heels are are not only painful but can pose an infection risk for many patients.
Staying on top of your foot care is the key to happy feet in the winter months. And avoiding dry winter skin!
The first place to start is with good hydration. Appropriate hydration will stave off dehydration, and in turn, keep your skin from drying excessively. Be sure to drink plenty of water in the winter months. The lack of humidity in the air will dry out you and your skin. Also, take care to avoid hot showers and soaks as they can further irritate already dry skin.
Try to avoid applying scented lotions and creams as these can be irritating to the skin. We recommend moisturizing your feet with a good quality unscented lotion. Aloe socks or “gel socks” are also a great addition to the routine. These socks help hold moisturizer on your feet and help prevent them from drying out. The socks are widely available at many retailers or online.
Moisturize your feet with a podiatrist-recommended product such as Kera-42. Kera-42 contains 40% urea and is a fantastic option as it pulls moisture directly into the skin. Prescription-strength Kera-42 can be purchased right here at Kansas City Foot and Ankle; without an appointment.
Another recommendation is Foot Miracle. Foot Miracle is a therapeutic cream that can help restore and protect your skin. It does not contain any mineral oil or petroleum. It can be used daily. This is also in stock in our offices.
If a callous is present, or there are any other unknown underlying problems, many of these remedies will be less likely to work. People with diabetes are more prone to cracking skin on their feet. This is a problem as it can lead to wounds and infections quickly. These patients must be very serious about keeping their feet dry. If you have diabetes, seeing a podiatrist in the winter months, especially if you are developing cracks on your heels, is imperitive. These cracks can lead to deep heel wounds. Patients with thyroid issues can also have problems with dry skin. A podiatrist can monitor your foot health and make sure that a simple dry cracked heel doesn’t turn into a more serious wound or infection.
With winter already in full swing in Kansas City, the tendency to develop dry, cracked skin is upon us. Make sure you are taking every measure to care for your feet and using the above recommendations to avoid painful dry, cracked feet. If you or someone you know is suffering from dry cracked feet, call Kansas City Foot and Ankle and the Heel Pain Center of Kansas City today at 816-943-1111 to schedule an appointment with our expert team of doctors! We conveniently have multiple locations throughout the community to serve you. Call today!