Foot Odor: Eliminating Embarrassing Smells
Smell is a powerful sense that many people take for granted, yet it can have a significant impact on memory and mood. Smell can be pleasant, like the scent of your favorite cookies, or highly unpleasant, like when you have sweaty, stinky feet.
Foot odor is an embarrassing problem that prevents may people from feeling comfortable with their shoes off around friends and loved ones. It’s quite common and, fortunately, something you can improve.
The Source of the Stink
Foot odor is that unpleasant smell that lingers on feet and in shoes, sometimes connected to a fungal infection, but usually related to sweat build-up on your feet and in your footwear. You have several hundred thousand sweat glands on your lower limbs all secreting up to a pint of moisture per day. The perspiration itself is odorless, but when it mingles with the thousands of bacteria that live on the surface of your skin, that can change. Certain bacteria break down the sweat, which creates the foul smell as a byproduct.
The unpleasant mixture gets absorbed by your socks and your shoes, where it continues to linger and the bacteria can grow. Every time you re-wear those shoes, then, the problem compounds as the sweaty stink builds up. Anything that causes excess sweating can make the odor worse, including hormone changes during puberty, some medications, stress, and natural conditions. Poor hygiene can add to the smell as well.
Sweetening Your Feet
Foot odor is fortunately something you can eliminate, saving you from both the smell and embarrassment that often comes with it.
- Wash your feet every day with soap and warm water to clean off old sweat and bacteria build-up.
- Wear clean, fresh pairs of moisture-wicking socks, and consider changing them after exercising or other activities that tend to increase sweating.
- Avoid wearing the same pair of shoes two days in a row if you can. Instead, let each pair sit as open as possible for at least 24-hours to allow old perspiration to evaporate out.
- Use odor-eating products in your shoes to help eliminate the smell. You can even apply antiperspirant to your feet.
If your feet sweat excessively, you may need more involved treatments. Our specialists with Family Foot & Ankle Care of Jasper will help determine why you struggle with foot odor and address the root of the problem. This may include using prescription-strength products or other treatments to reduce perspiration, depending on your needs.
Keeping Feet Odor-Free
Part of the challenge of dealing with foot odor is not only eliminating the smells, but keeping feet smelling sweet. Many of the treatments to eliminate odor issues help prevent it from returning as well. Wash your feet every day and wear fresh socks and shoes. Keep up with other aspects of foot hygiene, including trimming your toenails. Choose to wear footwear that allows air to circulate around your lower limbs. Use odor-eating products in your shoes, even if it’s just baking soda.
Foot odor is a common problem that’s often connected to excessive sweating in your lower limbs. It can be highly embarrassing, but it shouldn’t stop you from enjoying time with your family and friends. Our specialists at Family Foot & Ankle Care of Jasper are here to help you eliminate that unpleasant foot smell and take care of your feet overall. Contact our office in Jasper, IN, for more information or to get started eliminating your lower limbs’ scent today! You can reach us online or by calling (812) 481-7200.
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