General Beauty Problems of The Foot
Dry Cracking Heels
Dry cracking heels (xeorosis) are a condition of thickening and fissuring (cracking of the bottom part of the heels). In most people this is a nuisance and a cosmetic problem. But when the problem persists, especially in diabetes or people with impaired vascular sufficiency, this can lead to a serious medical problem.
More often cracked heels are a sign of lack of attention to foot care rather than just overexposure or lack of moisturizing. Also known as heel fissures,cracked heels are regular linear cut wounds and mostly affect the surface level which comprises of the epidermis. Sometimes it may get deep into the dermis and become painful. Excessive pressure on the feet pads make the feet want to expand sideways. As the skin, surrounding the sides of the feet are dry they crack and cause cracked heels. Appearances of cracked heels also indicate zinc and omega-3 fatty acid deficiency.
Causes for Cracked Heels
- Naturally dry skin or thick dry skin (callus) around the heel that is more likely to crack is often due to excessive feet activity.
- Prolonged standing at work or home .Hard floors may also cause cracks in the feet.
- Being overweight may increase the pressure on the normal fat pad under the heel, causing it to expand sideways and if the skin lacks flexibility the pressure on the feet lead to cracked heels.
- Back-open sandals or shoes allow the fat under the heel to expand sideways and increases the possibility of cracks on the heels.
- Disease and Disorders-Athlete’s foot, Psoriasis, Eczema, Thyroid disease, Diabetes and some other skin conditions may also
- Age - Thick dry scaly skin lose elasticity with age and thus cracks have higher incidence with age.
- Ill fitting shoes, standing for a long time or change in walking posture.
- Unhygienic circumstances or conditions
- Unhealthy, dry scaly skin due to climate or diseases
- Deficiency of vitamins, minerals and zinc
Remedies for Cracked Heels
- Apply any shortening or hydrogenated vegetable oil after washing the feet clean on dry and cracked areas of the feet. After applying a thick coat of shortening on the feet, wear a pair of thick socks. Leaving this application overnight can surely provide positive results in few days.
- Apply the pulp of a ripe banana on the dry or cracked area of the heel. Leave it on for 10 minutes and rinse it clean.
- Soak the feet in lemon juice for about 10minutes. Follow this therapy on a weekly basis until one finds a change.
- A daily regime of cleaning and moisturizing is a good cure for dry or cracked heels. At the end of the day soak the feet in warm soapy water for about 15 minutes. Rinse feet and pat dry. Make a healing mixture comprising of: one teaspoon Vaseline and the juice of one lemon. Rub this mixture onto the cracked heels and other required areas of the feet till it is thoroughly absorbed. This can be done daily until visible results are obtained.
- A regular application of a mixture of glycerin and rosewater is known to soothe and cure cracked heels.
- Another result oriented solution is to melt paraffin wax and mix it well with little mustard oil. Apply on the dry or cracked area of the heels. Rinse it off in the morning. A continuous application for 10 to15 days can achieve desirable results.