It’s not usually a serious condition because, for most people, only the outermost layer of the skin is affected. However, cracked heels could cause discomfort while walking barefoot and if the fissures go much deeper, they could be very painful. Bleeding may even occur in some serious instances. Initially if you don’t care cracked heels, it might cause you any problem. But, as the time goes on people will start having the pain of cracked heels. But, if you can take precaution from very beginning, getting painful cracked heels can be ideally stopped.
This has become a nagging problem which we hardly care. But, if you keep on not caring these cracked heels of yours, this might end up with serious issues. You may get blood from the skins. You can easily get variety of crack creams which will fill up the cracks and wound in your heels.
What causes cracked feet
Cracked heels appear when the skin of your heels splits because of dryness. When the skin is unable to retain moisture, it becomes fragile and cracks. The feet hold up your entire body weight so the pressure on dry heels easily causes fissures. Other factors that lead to cracked heels include:
As you grow older, the skin loses its elasticity, gets thinner so it becomes easier for it to lose moisture and get dry. Therefore, cracked heels are common among older adults.
- Medical Conditions
Medical conditions like eczema and psoriasis make the skin dry so if you have them, you are more likely to develop heel fissures.
Excess weight puts a lot of pressure on your heels. It makes the fat pad under your heels to expand sideways and the skin eventually cracks.
- Open Footwear
Open-back shoes let the fat pad of your heels expand sideways so the pressure leads to cracking of its skin. Walking barefoot or wearing uncomfortable shoes also causes the same situation because the heels don’t get proper support.
Eight home remedies on how to prevent cracked feet
1. Get fitting shoes:
Especially for people who do a lot of walking as part of their day-to-day routine, proper fitting footwear is vital. When feet move around inside their shoes, friction between the heel and sole cause calluses which can easily lead to infection and cracking. When choosing shoes for work or any other step intensive activity, make sure they fit snug around the heel with just a small amount of wiggle room in the toe. Not only will this help to prevent calluses and cracked heels, shoes that fit right will also keep feet from getting as sore during your daily activities.
2. Exfoliating scrub:
reduce the prevention of cracked heels, try removing the surrounding calluses with an exfoliating foot scrub made by mixing five parts ground rice or coarse rice flour with one part honey and one/two parts apple cider vinegar. Add almond or olive oil until the consistency of your scrub is that of a thick paste. Apply to calluses after a bath or shower. Alternately, you can soak feet in warm water fortified with a half cup of apple cider vinegar for ten minutes, then use a foot scrub or pumice stone for a similar effect.
3. Avoid hot water:
While you may enjoy the heat sensation of a long, hot bath at the end of the day, exposure to hot water actually dries out your skin and can cause you to have cracked heels. To help remedy this problem, bathe in warm water only. Add organic oils or Epsom salts to your bath to nourish damaged skin. After your bath or shower, pat yourself dry instead of rubbing to prevent further damage to already irritated skin. Finally, apply moisturizers to cracked heels immediately after bathing for best effect.
Mainly recognized for their ability to increase cardiovascular health, Omega-3 fatty acids are also essential for healthy skin. Adequate intake of these ‘good fats’ can help to strengthen skin cell membranes, simultaneously improving the body’s ability to heal, defend against infection, and expel toxins. Wild-caught cold water fish such as mackerel, tuna, and sardines are all excellent sources of Omega-3 fatty-acids. Vegetarian sources include flax, chia, perilla, lingonberry, hemp, and portulaca.
5. Vitamin D3:
Vitamin D3, commonly known as the ‘sunshine vitamin’ for our skin’s ability to synthesize it from sun exposure, vitamin D3 is another crucial component in the fight against cracked heels. Vitamin D3 or cholecalciferol is a fat-soluble compound which is necessary for the absorption of several other nutrients in the intestines (zinc being one of them.) While safe sun exposure is the recommended method for getting your daily dose of D3, this vital nutrient may also be obtained from a supplement or in small amounts from consuming fatty fish, beef liver, egg yolks, and some vitamin-fortified foods.
Getting your daily recommended intake of zinc is vital to numerous metabolic processes and over one hundred enzymatic reactions in the human body. Protein synthesis, regulation of carbon-dioxide in the blood stream, gene expression, apoptosis, and cell metabolism are some of the most important of these functions. If an analysis of your diet points to a zinc deficiency, eat more foods like oysters, beef, and crab which are all high in zinc content. Vegetarians can consume beans, nuts, yogurt, and fortified cereals to boost the body’s preventive and healing power with zinc.
7. Keep your feet hydrated:
You can ensure your feet retain moisture by applying foot creams and putting on socks before you go to sleep and after you take a bath and dry your feet.
You can also prevent your feet from losing their natural oils by limiting baths to five to ten minutes. Avoid using harsh soaps that also strip oils from your skin. You should also drink plenty of water to make sure your skin is hydrated.
8. Dry brushing:
A dry brush is simply a natural bristled brush that you use to exfoliate your skin with by brushing in large circular motions. It’s effective in stimulating blood flow, removing dead skin cells and encouraging skin cell regeneration. Use this on your legs and the tops of your feet before a shower.
There are many ways to accelerate the process of preventing your cracked feet. The most effective ones are keeping your feet well moisturized, not exposing them to pollution, relaxing your feet, taking natural oil-based foot massages, soaking your feet in warm water with some lemon juice added to it, and treating medical conditions, skin problems, and obesity.