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Ways to Treat and Prevent Blisters
You could not resist that fancy pair of shoes, even though they rubbed the balls of your feet raw? Took a 2-hour hike in brand-new hiking boots? Raked an autumn's worth of leaves when you seldom grip anything wider than a pen? Chances are, the unrelenting friction between shoe or rake and skin caused the top two layers of skin to separate and the space between them to fill with fluid. That is what blister is. Most people get blisters on their feet, courtesy of ill-fitting shoes. But these little balloons of pain can sprout anywhere skin meets friction, especially on the hands and fingers. Therefore, here are some tips that you can consider to adopt to treat and prevent blisters.
1. Get Your Feet Examined
If tight shoes or wayward hose are not causing your blisters, consider consulting a foot specialist. High or fallen arches can cause blisters. So can a Charlie Chaplin gait, walking with your feet turned outward. To help correct the foot problem and prevent future blisters, a podiatrist may prescribe orthotics, corrective devices that fit in your shoes.
2. Inspect Your Shoes And Socks
If you tend to develop blisters in the same spot, check your shoes for points of friction. See if your shoe is excessively worn or if it has a torn seam or lining. Check your socks or stockings, too. A tear in a seam can cause friction, as can wadded-up hose.
3. Wear Shoes That Fit
The toe box of your shoes should be high enough for you to easily wiggle your toes, while the heel of the shoes should neither slide nor pinch.
4. Break In Shoes Gradually
While new shoes should feel comfortable the minute you leave the store, many people find that they need to break them in. Do not wear new shoes longer than 2 hours the first day.
5. Search Your Sole
Wear inner soles to protect the balls of your feet. Spenco makes an inner sole that provides a good cushion and reduces friction. You will find inner soles in the foot-care section of drugstores or in sporting goods stores.
6. Patch Up Problems
You might also wear a moleskin patch on these vulnerable areas. Do not use adhesive bandages, however. They slip and slide and cause the very friction that you are trying to avoid.
7. Lubricate Hot Spots
If you are prone to blisters in a particular area, for example your heel or the ball of your foot, you can slather the spot with petroleum jelly or a thick ointment. The lubricant will reduce the friction.
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