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Common Foot Problems and How to Address Them Naturally

If you’re like most busy people today, you put a lot of stress and pressure on your feet each and every day. Not only are our feet strained from work and exercise, but we (women) also tend to cram them into unsupportive shoes that cause more harm than good. But since you’re only born with one pair zof feet to take you through life, it’s important to take good care of them and treat foot conditions before they become major problems.

Here are some of the most common foot problems and how you can ease and treat them naturally.

Photo credit: Judith via Flickr

Bunions

Bunions are small bumps that grow on the outer portions of the foot and typically appear swollen and red. This is a joint condition and common among people who spend a lot of time on their feet or who wear high heels.

Natural bunion treatment options include wearing wider shoes so that the toes can wiggle around inside and using bunion pads inside shoes to take some of the weight off of the toes. It’s also a good idea to stretch the feet to keep the foot and toe joints flexible and strong. If bunion pain persists, try using ice a few times per day and elevating the feet to reduce inflammation.

Corns

Corns are patches of thick, hard skin that develop on the feet when they are exposed to excess friction. They often form on the sides of toes and the soles of the feet, and once again, poor fitting shoes are a common cause of this foot problem. People who have diabetes are more prone to developing corns due to insufficient blood flow to the feet.

The first step to treating corns naturally is to take away the pressure or friction that caused them to form in the first place, which may involve changing the type of shoes you wear. A pumice stone may help to remove hard, dead skin when used on moist feet after a bath or shower. Other home remedies that people use to treat corns include white vinegar, baking soda, lemon, and garlic. All of these natural ingredients can be rubbed directly onto corns or mixed in with a recipe to help the feet return to normal.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a condition that can be inherited, but anyone can develop it. This is a foot deformity that is caused by a muscular imbalance. Since wearing poorly fitting shoes is a common cause of hammertoe, one natural approach is to use shoe stretchers to get some extra room for the feet to move.

It’s a good idea to avoid high heel shoes with pointed toes to prevent this condition. There are also specialized splits that you can wear to treat hammertoe and keep toes in place. Toe spreading exercises, toe taps, and practicing picking up a towel off the ground with your toes can also be effective treatments for hammertoe without the need for surgery or medications.

Photo credit: andy_5322 via Flickr

Blisters

Blisters are a very common foot problem, and pretty much everyone has had one at some point. Blisters are typically caused by friction and made worse by moisture.

This is why it’s a good idea to keep blisters clean and protected with a bandage or piece of moleskin. Calendula ointment and aloe vera are effective natural treatments for blisters, and tea tree oil can help kill bacteria and prevent infection without antibiotics.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a very painful form of heel pain that is caused by inflamed tissues in this area of the foot. It is often caused by overuse of the feet from work or exercise and becomes worse with age and obesity. As an alternative to surgery, steroid injections, or shock wave therapy, there are effective natural treatments for plantar fasciitis that you can try.

Simple rest, massage, and ice can do wonders to soothe heel pain, especially when paired with essential oils like rosemary and lavender. There are some great exercises that you can do to strengthen the calf muscles and Achilles tendons to ease plantar fasciitis pain, and it’s also a good idea to wear supportive shoes and maintain a healthy body weight.

We hope that you’ve found these natural foot tips to be helpful, and please leave a comment below if there’s a foot issue we missed so we can address it in a future article!

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