Summer Foot Tips

It’s sandal weather again, (or barefoot weather for the truly free spirited) and along with the sandals and bare feet come all of the bad nasties that your feet can pick up along the way. One thing to keep in mind when you are sporting sandals, flip flops or sans shoe completely is too keep your feet clean.


Depending on how active you are outdoors, you may need to wash your feet several times a day to make sure they are clean. Remember, along with dirt comes all the bacteria and germs that can cause fungus.

Athlete’s foot is a potential hazard lurking around the gym or public swimming pools or the shower at the beach and also the sidewalk or boardwalk at the beach. Anywhere that stays moist is prone to supporting the fungi and bacteria that can cause an infection, so really you should have something on in that environment to be safe, bare feet feel good but you are more open for hazards such as fungal infections not to mention cuts, stubbed toes and the ever painful stone bruise. A stone bruise is when you step on something, like a stone or any small object and the impact causes a deep tissue bruise that can be very painful.

On the other end of the spectrum from bare feet is a covered foot that is stuck in a shoe or boot and sweating all day. This is another cause of athlete’s foot and other fungal infections. If you are to be out all day keep an extra pair (or two) of dry socks handy as if your feet are stuck in sweaty socks all day you could end up with a painful foot fungus.

During WWI, WWII, Korea and Viet Nam, jungle rot often plagued soldiers who never had a chance to let their socks or feet dry out. If you are stuck in shoes all day and get the chance to take them off and let your feet air out is a good idea.

Another good idea is to use activated charcoal insoles; these will absorb the excess moisture and helps to prevent the fungi from starting in the first place. Also using a quality foot powder designed to prevent or treat athlete”s foot as well as absorb excess moisture is always a good idea.

If you work outdoors in boots during hot weather, if possible have two pair of boots and alternate between them every other day and this will allow them to air dry from your sweat between wears and helps to prevent fungi from occurring.

If you do wear sandals or go barefoot, don”t forget that you have exposed skin there, your feet can become sunburned too, apply sunscreen to the tops of your feet when you are putting in on the rest of you.

Regardless of weather, spring, summer, fall or winter, be sure to wear shoes that provide ample support to your feet. Adequate arch support is as vital if not more, for the well being and health of your tootsies as anything else.


David Sands, DPM

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