Putting your best foot forward: Tips for healthy feet

ORLANDO, Fla. – One survey found that eight out of 10 Americans have experienced some type of foot problem. From ingrown toenails to chronic pain, foot issues can make everyday activities difficult. 

The average American takes about 5,000 steps a day. That’s 5,000 times your feet pound the pavement. So, how can you keep your tootsies in tip-top shape?

Wear the right shoes

Dr. John Campbell, an orthopedic surgeon at Mercy Medical Center said, “If you’re going to play basketball, wear a basketball sneaker, don’t wear a running shoe. It’s not the same kind of event. It’s not designed to protect you for that.” 

When deciding on a new pair of shoes, make sure you have at least half an inch between your longest toe and the front of the shoe. Walk in the shoes to make sure there’s no slipping or rubbing. If your feet aren’t the same size, buy the shoes to fit your larger foot. Also, be sure to replace running shoes every 300 miles.

How to avoid ingrown toenails

To avoid ingrown toenails on your feet, cut your nails straight across. Don’t round them. And if you do develop an ingrown nail, see a doctor instead of dealing with it yourself. To prevent bacterial and fungal infections, bathe daily and take time to dry the skin between your toes. If you suffer an injury, see a professional. It might be more serious than you think.

“The old wives tale where people say, well if you can walk on it it’s not broken, absolutely false,” Campbell said.  

Another tip is to avoid high heels as much as possible. They don’t support your ankle and can actually change the natural position of your foot.