The human foot is a unique anatomical structure, in which a staggering number of bones, joints, tendons and muscles are gathered together. It not only enables us to move, but it also provides a stable support at any given time. Unfortunately, our feet often give us not only health problems, but aesthetic ones, as well. Different sensations and conditions may occur – heaviness, fatigue, numbness, swelling, varicose veins and in a large percentage of the cases even pronounced pain.
What are the factors that cause the unpleasant symptoms?
Along with overwork, the causes usually are:
- Sedentary way of life
Sedentary lifestyle slows down the circulation of blood and lymphatic fluid, resulting in the occurrence of adverse sensation in the feet.
Narrow, tight-fitting pants and socks also hamper blood and lymph circulation.
"The drink of the gods" has a vasodilating effect and when not consumed with moderation, it violates the normal water exchange of cells.
Excessive consumption of salt predisposes to water retention in the limbs.
Over the years, the cushion and the cartilage layer of the sole becomes thinner. Because of that, the feet lose their ability to soften the step.
Cigarette smoke prevents the oxygen supply to tissues.
Too tight or too loose shoes, as well as those with worn soles or heels higher than 4 cm alter the gait and have a very negative effect on the joints and on the local blood circulation.
- Flatfeet (pes planus)
Flatfeet leads to excessive bending of the foot inwards when walking or running, which strongly increases the pressure on them.
The tiring of the feet during pregnancy is a consequence of the sudden weight gain and the impact of estrogens, causing fluid retention and unwanted relaxation of the ligaments.
The more overweight your feet are forced to bear, the more tense their muscles and joints will be.
In certain cases, the above symptoms can result from disturbances in the musculoskeletal system or from internal diseases, such as diabetes.
There are studies demonstrating the relationship between the discomfort in the feet and a diet poor in folic acid, iron, vitamin E and some other substances.
How to avoid the appearance of unwanted sensations in the feet?
- Try to find a balance between physical activity and recreation
- Dedicate even more efforts to your general health
- Eat healthy and in moderation
- Try to reduce the use of alcohol, cigarettes and salt
- Comfort should be your priority when choosing clothes and shoes
- Avoid crossing your legs while sitting
Along with all this, it would be very helpful to spend a few minutes a day to exercise and strengthen the muscles of the feet. For this purpose, you can try the following:
- Lifting light objects from the floor with your toes
- Stepping consequently first on your fingers, then on your soles
- Walk for a while, stepping only on the outer edges of your feet
What can you do to relieve the discomfort that has already appeared?
Direct efforts to improve the local blood circulation and lymph drainage:
- Immerse your feet in a washbasin with warm water to which you have added sea salt and / or a few drops of essential oil of peppermint, eucalyptus or rosemary
- Rinse your feet several times, alternating hot and cold water
- Massage your feet with a suitable cream (during pregnancy do not apply pressure on the reflex points of the feet, but gently push the stagnant fluids from your toes towards your knees)
- Walk barefoot on uneven surfaces
- Roll with your foot a small ball or a bottle on the floor
- Sit comfortably and lift your legs high, leaving gravity to do the rest.
If, despite your efforts symptoms do not subside, you should seek medical help to rule out the possibility that they are the result of a more serious problem or the potential to become one.
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