While fever, cough and cold are all fairly typical during the monsoon, the risk of fungal or bacterial infections also arises in this season. Our feet are susceptible to germs, fungus and bacteria, all of which can cause infection. The sweat due to the humid and damp environment are to be blamed. In addition, rainy days cause water-logging and muddy roadways, increasing the risk of foot ailments. As a result, one needs to be extra careful with their feet. You can maintain them with the help of a few tips for foot care.
What are foot infections?
Well, this is the most awaited season of the year. On one hand, the monsoon is a time for enjoying the rain, the smooth breeze, hanging out with friends, going on long walks, and possibly indulging in street food. On the other hand, it also encourages several diseases such as food poisoning, flu, and several body infections such as foot infections, which are a part of monsoon-related skin problems.
“Foot infections are painful disorders that can stem from foot injuries. These infections are initially characterized by soreness and swelling, but if untreated, they can get considerably worse,” Dr Navnit Haror, Founder and Director of Derma Miracle Clinic, told Health Shots.
Some of the common wounds and injuries that lead to foot infection are:
- Skin cracks
- Ingrown nails
- Sharp object into the skin
How do you know if you have a foot infection?
Look out for these signs and symptoms of foot infection:
- Change in skin colour
- The rise in skin temperature
- Swelling and pain
- Open wounds that are slow to heal
- Skin dryness
Why are foot infections common in the rainy season?
Dr Haror says, “During the monsoon, our feet are mostly drenched in water and then in tightly closed shoes, which gives no fresh air. Also, the rubbing of the skin causes the skin to react and gives rise to a foot infection. Any previous injury that is left untreated and gets soaked in water can also cause inflammation.” So, this is why foot infection is common during this season.
How to prevent foot infections in the monsoon?
There are several ways to prevent these infections from arising and take care of feet.
1. Do not walk barefoot
Walking barefoot in the rain or on wet grass can feel good, but this can also be problematic for your feet. There are chances you might get some warts and also make your feet a fertile ground for bacteria, which can lead to an infection. Hence, try to avoid walking barefoot.
2. Clean your feet
Whenever your feet get dirty, make sure that you properly wash and clean them. Use a mild soap to get rid of the bacteria and dirt. And use good quality foot care products. If your skin is feeling dry, you can also scrub your feet with pumice stone.
2. Keep your feet dry
Damp feet are a big NO. Keeping your feet dry should be your number one priority in the rainy season if you want to avoid infection.
3. Do not over-moisturize
Moisturizing is good for your skin, but overdoing it can be a problem. During the monsoon season, the environment already has too much moisture, and humidity. Hence, moisturizing your feet day and night can be a problem and can cause the reverse effect on your feet.
4. Keep nails clean and short
Unclean and long nails can also put you at the risk of fungal infection in your feet. You should keep your nails clean and cut them regularly. Do not cut it too short, as it can lead to cuts and tears.
5. Wear monsoon-friendly footwear
Wearing enclosed fabric-made footwear can soak up moisture easily, which can increase the risk of foot fungal infection. It is best advised to wear open footwear made of rubber to keep your feet dry. And if you’re still wearing sneakers, and shoes on a regular basis, make sure they’re clean.
If you’re already dealing with a foot infection, keep these tips in mind:
- Always keep your feet dry and clean.
- On the affected area, apply anti-fungal and antibacterial lotions.
- Use antiseptic powder to keep it clean.
- To reduce discomfort, itchiness, or irritation, apply a cool compress.
- Do not cover the affected area with tight clothing or bandages; instead, let the skin breathe.
- Soak your feet in warm water, as it is helpful for taking care of your feet.
- You can also use tea tree oil to keep fungal infections at bay.
Last but not least, is to seek medical treatment for your foot infection. Though prevention is better than cure, if you have got a foot infection, it is best advised to seek treatment at the earliest and not leave it to go untreated.