Sore feet and how to “de-feet” them

By: Health Local Staff Aug 15, 2011
  Article
sore feet

Unfortunately high heels and foot pain often come as a pair. Here are some at-home remedies for your sore footsies.

Cute shoes and sore feet go hand in hand. This is unfortunate, but true! Some people would just tell you to “wear more sensible shoes,” but for those fashionistas among us, this is just not an option. Women must suffer to be beautiful, right? Surely there must be a way that you can have the best of both worlds: continue to wear your cute shoes and minimize the swollen, achy and blistered feet associated with wearing them. Here are a few “kitchen remedies” to help you out:

Ice
If your feet are achy or swollen, ice will be their best friend. To get the most out of the ice, it is best to pour some in a bucket and soak your feet. It is not the most comfortable, or even the most glamorous. In fact, you’ll be saying “ouch” and making funny faces the whole time your feet are soaking. For sore and achy feet, ice not only provides relief but also brings down swelling. Take a bucket, a cake pan, anything large enough for your feet plus some water and fill it with ice. Add enough water to wet all the ice. Put your feet in up to about 30 minutes, but no less that 15, or until the ice has melted. This will be painful for about 10 minutes until your feet numb a bit.

Epsom Salt Soak
This icing technique works best when done in conjunction with an Epsom Salt Soak. This soak on its own is good for blisters, but for soreness and swelling, the rotation between heat and cold stimulate blood flow, and blood flow = healing. Consider it a one-two punch to alleviate the pain and swelling. Dissolve Epsom salts into water that is as hot as you can stand in a bucket, cake pan, or whatever allows you to completely submerge your feet in water. Your tub will also do. Soak your feet until the water is lukewarm, then you can refill it with hot water if you wish, or move on to:

Blister Band aids, Lotion, Socks
This is an easy treatment that you can do in your sleep. It is especially important after a salt soak, as salt can dry out your feet. After you have finished your icing and salt soaking routine, cover any blisters you have with band-aids specifically designed for blisters, as they provide more padding. Then rub any uncovered skin down in lotion. Put warm, dry, cotton socks on over the top - viola, when you wake up and remove the socks, your feet will look and feel much better.

Comfy "Ugly" Shoes
It is a good idea to have a pair of comfortable - unfortunately this sometimes translates to “ugly” - shoes that you can wear around when your feet are recovering from a night in your stilettos. These should be partially open, and no part of them should rub on your heel or the sides of your toes, where blisters often form. These shoes can even be brought along with you and used after a long night in uncomfortable shoes, which can be worn during your trip back home, where a soak in ice and/or Epsom salt, lotion rub down and blister band-aids await you.

Prevention
The best treatment for sore feet is prevention. Try to make sure that you buy shoes that fit you right, and that you’ve broken them in properly before you need to wear them for an extended period of time. If you know what you have a few problem spots where you usually get blisters, try wearing blister band-aids on these spots as a preventative measure - usually translucent, they are not readily apparent to people who don’t know that they’re there.

The Health Local Staff is a team of writers and experts dedicated to bringing you the latest health, nutrition and lifestyle information at www.healthlocal.ca.