Your feet: aside from when you put your shoes on every morning, you might not think much of them at all. Actually, though, feet are far more important than we give them credit for. They help us to get around with very little complaining, and they adapt to different terrain so that we can easily walk, run or stand in every location.
Feet aren’t only good for walking. They help your whole body to regulate optimum temperature, and reflexology professionals believe that they can improve functioning of the organs by treating the feet alone. Most importantly of all, when problems occur, your feet could be trying to tell you more than you might think. Several of the most common foot problems can often reveal signs of a more serious health problem that’s worth checking out. In this video I will show you what foot problems reveal about your health.
No 1 Cold feet
If you’re always complaining about cold feet then you might be suffering with more than just a chronic chill. Cold feet can be a sign of high blood pressure or heart disease. Studies have also linked smoking with cold feet, and the nerve damage caused by diabetes may lead to a lack of blood flow to feet and ankles.
No 2 Swelling of feet
It’s pretty normal to experience swollen feet every now and then. People commonly experience symptoms when they’ve been standing for long periods of time, exercised heavily, or spent time on an aeroplane. The problem, however, is when foot swelling does not reduce after several hours, or is a permanent occurrence. Swollen feet in the long run might be a sign of poor circulation, which is often a sign of medical conditions like kidney disorders, underactive thyroids or problems with the lymphatic system.
No 3 Foot pain
If you’re finding yourself ending the day with aching feet, you might be suffering from more than just soreness from a long day of standing up. Recurring, persistent pain in a certain part of your foot or ankle might be a sign that you’ve got a stress fracture, or one (or several) small breaks in the bone. Stress fractures are more easily caused than people think. Intense, high-impact exercise like running, circuit training and team sports can cause stress fractures, as can weakened bones due to osteoporosis.
No4 Clubbed toes
Clubbed toes refers to when the shape of the toes – and sometimes, the nails – changes noticeably. If you’re showing symptoms of clubbed toes, you might notice that your nails have rounded out at their tips, and are pointing more downwards, towards the floor. While clubbed toes may not be a sign of anything series, they could also be linked to an underlying cause, such as lung, heart and liver disease, as well as digestive issues and infections.
No5 Dark spots on the feet
If you’re thinking, who would get skin cancer on their feet? You’d be right to be cautious– skin cancer is usually associated with sun-worshippers who spend hours lying flat-out on a deckchair – but the truth is, it can affect anyone, and any part of the body. It’s always worth checking your feet for darkened moles that are irregular in shape, itchy, or bleeding, especially if they appear randomly and suddenly. Melanoma beneath the nail may show up as a dark spot that is less visible than a mole.
No6 Dragging your feet
We’ve all dragged our feet from time to time, whether from tiredness, silliness, or generally for no reason at all. If dragging your feet is something you notice you do often, though, it may actually be a sign that something isn’t right with your health. You might not even be aware that your feet have slightly lost sensation, which is usually caused by nerve damage linked to diabetes. This nerve damage may also be related to infection or vitamin deficiency, so get it checked out by a doctor for an accurate diagnosis.
No7 Painful sores that don’t heal
Experiencing any sort of injury that draws blood is hardly pleasant, but what’s even worse is when that injury won’t heal – seemingly ever. If you’ve got a sore that keeps re-opening without aggravation, you might be in danger of having diabetes. We know already that diabetes can impair sensation in the feet, and it can also prevent wounds from healing at a normal rate, which can lead to further issues like infection. Diabetes aside, a wound that doesn’t heal may also be linked to peripheral artery disease, which causes poor circulation to the hands and feet.
No8 Heel pain
Repeated heel pain might not be something worth ignoring – it could be a sign that you have a deeper issue that needs fixing. Plantar fasciitis is a common inflammation that’s caused by a number of factors, including arthritis, ill-fitting shoes, tendonitis, high-impact exercise and anything else that may put unnecessary pressure on the heel. If you’re struggling to put your full weight on your feet without heel pain, especially in the mornings, it may be a sign you’re experiencing plantar fasciitis.