It won’t be long until we start shopping for those pretty sandals for the warmer temps. Have you noticed how your feet have changed during the winter months? Not looking too pretty, huh?
Cracked feet, also known as heel fissures, are a common problem for people of all ages, mostly caused by lack of moisture. Other causes include standing for long hours, using harsh soaps, cold weather, continuous exposure to water, being overweight, and wearing improper footwear. Conditions like eczema, psoriasis, thyroid disease and diabetes can also contribute to this problem.
Some of the signs and symptoms of cracked feet are red or flaky patches, peeling skin, itchiness, bleeding from the cracks and pain. Cracked feet look unattractive and, in some cases can lead to infection and extreme pain. The problem can be taken care of with some simple home remedies.
Home remedies to help heal cracked feet
- Bananas. They make a great moisturizer for your feet. YouTube shares how to make a banana mask for your feet. Take 1 ripe banana and mash it up into a paste. Apply it to your feet for 10 to 15 minutes. Wash it off with warm water and then soak your feet in cold water for five to 10 minutes. Do this daily until your feet are healed. Be sure to apply a regular moisturizer when you’re done.
- Honey. Healthline says you can apply honey to both heal cracks and moisturize and act as a preventative. Home Remedies for Life makes a honey mask for feet from 1 cup honey, 2 tablespoons warm whole milk and the juice of 1/2 an orange. Mix these together thoroughly. Apply the mask to your feet for 45 minutes and then rinse it off. Apply a moisturizer when you’re finished.
- Petroleum jelly. At night, Medical News Today recommends applying petroleum jelly to help lock in moisture. Be sure to cover your feet at night to help keep the jelly in place. Use cotton socks to cover your feet. They’re great for putting on if you use petroleum jelly at night.
- Exfoliate. Use a pumice stone on your feet to remove callouses and layers of dead skin. Be sure to soak your feet in warm water and vinegar first to soften the extra skin. Make a paste of oatmeal and water/or coconut oil to scrub the area.
- Moisturize. Medical News Today says to be sure you moisturize them. Coconut oil and shea butter are great moisturizers, so Home Remedies for Life combines in a double boiler 3 tablespoons of beeswax, 1/4 cup coconut oil, and 1/4 cup shea butter. Melt these together over medium heat, stirring until they are thoroughly mixed. Once mixed, remove the pan from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Then put the ingredients in the blender and add 10 drops of oregano essential oil and 10 drops of peppermint essential oil. Mix them and then put it in a jar. Apply this cream to your feet once a day.
In severe cases, you may develop complications with a cracked heel, especially if it’s caused by a medical condition. Complications can include:
- a loss of feeling in your heel
- cellulitis, an infection
- diabetic foot ulcer
Symptoms of infection include pain, warmth, redness, and swelling. Call your doctor right away if you think you have an infection.
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