|Regardless of your age, occupation, or fitness level, your feet are a very important part of your body, since they help us to get around on a daily basis. Often times, we can neglect taking care of our feet for one reason or another, so let's take some time to consider ways to take care of our feet - which is especially important if you are dealing with any foot issues.
Recently, I have had my own foot issues, and I realized that I had been taking my feet for granted. I had never before had any reason to worry about my feet until I started to notice a pain in my right heel, and also a lump under the skin (queue the panic). After seeing a doctor who recommended that I have an ultrasound for further investigation, I was diagnosed with plantar fasciitis which is actually one of the most common causes of foot pain.
The doctor explained that this part of my heel had become inflamed from the tension of the thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes becoming too great and causing small tears over time. It's not a pleasant feeling, trust me.
This article will explore five ways of taking care of your own feet.. but if you have your own experience of pampering or fixing a foot problem, be sure to share in the comments below!
Please note: The information contained in this article is not professional health advice. If you are concerned about your health, please seek professional support from a doctor or hospital.
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5 Ways to Take Care of Your Feet
After learning more about my foot condition (and ways to prevent it), I thought I would write about some ways to take care of your own feet, so you can hopefully avoid these troubles!
1 | Pay Attention
I eluded to the fact in the introduction to this article that I really hadn't put a lot of thought into the well-being of my feet over the years. I took for granted that my feet were working as they should be, and that I wasn't having any issues, and this neglect led to the issues I have today with plantar fasciitis. Had I paid attention sooner to the discomfort I was feeling, perhaps I could have completely prevented these concerns from even happening.
So take a moment right now... yep - kick off your shoes, close your eyes, and think about how your feet are feeling right at this moment. Are you noticing any tension or pain? If so, how long has this pain been around for? Track this tension or pain over the next week or so in order to determine if you have just been on your feet a lot lately, which can lead to typical soreness, or if it could warrant further investigation from a health professional.
2 | Get Checked Out
When was the last time you talked to a doctor or health professional about your foot health? Chances are, probably not lately.. or ever! It's just not something on our radar since most of the time we go to the doctor for a particular reason, like a flu shot, or antibiotics. But if there are some concerns on your mind about your foot health, be sure to share this with your doctor on your next visit, so they can recommend any next steps (no pun intended) to take.
3 | Consider Orthotics
After talking with my doctor, I knew that my foot troubles were not going to go away on their own, and in fact could get worse unless I took action. The doctor suggested speaking with a Podiatrist (aka a foot specialist) and also trying orthotics. Although I had used gel insoles in my shoes before, I had never heard of orthotics, or knew anything about how they could help.
It's important to know that an orthotic is not an insole. Insoles provide cushion like a soft mattress. This might feels really nice on your feet, but it's not actually good for the long-term health of your feet. An orthotic is more like a brace or a firm mattress. Perhaps they don't feel as soft to the touch like a gel insole but in the long run they can treat the cause of the foot, knee or back pain, not just mask the symptoms.
Luckily, I was able to connect with a company that specializes in biomedically engineered orthotics through Orthera.com and tried out their selection of orthotics over several months. These included the foot armour orthotics and the dress shoe orthotics shown in the image above.
I found that by wearing the orthotics over time, the pain in my heel has decreased. Keep in mind that there is a break in period while your foot adjusts from its current biomechanics to a new (corrected) biomechanical movement. During this time your feet can feel tired and you should take them out when that happens, and then put them in the next day again… a little longer.. until you are adjusted.
I would highly recommend checking out the merchandise options from Orthera.com (you can purchase online or at Costco) or send them a message for more information - they are very nice!
Note: This is not a sponsored post, but I was sent orthotics to try out in my own daily life. I have also since consulted a Podiatrist and had specialized orthotics made for me. Check your benefits plan through your employer to see if you are eligible for compensation for this service.
4 | Yoga for the Feet
I'm sure that you have heard of the practice of yoga.. (and if not, this is the practice of moving your body into different postures using breath work and meditation practices) but have you ever done yoga.. for the feet?
If not, follow along with Yoga with Adrienne as she guides you through some practices that can help you to be kind to your feet.
"Your feet need proper TLC! A lot of issues with the feet can be healed with mindful body work. Here are some very simple tools to practice at home. A perfect opportunity to clean and clear the slate and rebuild from the ground up. So many gems in this one! Breathe easy and enjoy! "
5 | Pamper Your Feet
Whether it's a spa day at home, or a splurge at an actual spa or massage parlour, pampering your feet can help to not only feel better physically, but also gives you some time to relax.
A few easy DIYs for pampering your feet at home could include:
Let me know in the comments below how you usually take care of your feet, or any tips from this article that you will be taking away with you and implementing in your own life in order to promote the long-term health of your feet!
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Welcome to the blog!↓ That's me, Heather. :)