How To Stop Smelly Feet This Summer

Picture this: It’s a beautiful summer day. You’ve packed your towel and sandals, and you head out to the pool. As you take off your shoes, a rancid odor hits your nose. Embarrassing, right? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Smelly feet, medically known as bromodosis, are a common issue, especially in the warmer months. Fortunately, there are solutions to keep your feet fresh and odor-free.

In this article brought to you by Mountain Spring Podiatry, we explore this nauseating condition. If you are experiencing severe or persistent foot odor, and/or if you notice infections or wounds, then consider consulting a licensed foot doctor as soon as possible. A little bit of timely foot care can do wonders in preventing big problems later.

What causes smelly feet anyway?

Smelly feet happen when sweat and bacteria mix. Our feet have more sweat glands than any other part of the body, and these glands work overtime in warm weather. When sweat accumulates, it creates a moist environment where bacteria thrive and produce the characteristic bad odor.

Contributing factors can include poor hygiene, wearing the same socks and/or shoes daily, and not allowing feet and shoes to breathe properly.

Your First Line of Defense: Daily hygiene

The foundation of combating foot odor starts with good hygiene. Wash your feet daily. Use warm water and soap to wash your feet, and pay special attention to the areas between your toes.

After washing, dry your feet completely, especially between the toes. Moisture left on your feet can lead to bacterial growth. To go above and beyond, use a pumice stone or foot scrub to remove dead skin cells, which can harbor bacteria.

Choose the right footwear

Believe it or not, what you wear on your feet can significantly impact foot odor. It’s always advisable to consult with foot specialists when choosing the right footwear, especially if you have a food condition or deformity. Granted, here are some rules of thumb to choose the right footwear:

  • Opt for Breathable Shoes: Shoes made of breathable materials like leather or mesh allow air circulation, reducing sweat accumulation.
  • Rotate Your Shoes: Avoid wearing the same pair of shoes two days in a row. Give them time to air out and dry completely.
  • Wear Sandals or Open-Toed Shoes: When possible, opt for sandals or open-toed shoes that allow your feet to breathe.

Socks matter

The type of socks you wear can also affect foot odor. Wear socks made of moisture-wicking materials like cotton or specialized synthetic blends that keep your feet dry. More importantly, remember to change your socks at least once a day, and more often if you notice they become damp.

When to seek professional help

If you’ve tried all sorts of home remedies but the odor has stuck like a stain, then it might be time to consult a professional. A qualified podiatrist is a licensed medical professional who specializes in the feet, ankles, and lower extremities.

A podiatrist can check for underlying conditions, such as fungal infections or hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), and recommend appropriate, tailored treatments. Call Mountain Spring Podiatry to schedule an appointment or arrange a walk-in for as soon as possible.