Foot odor is one of the most common problems for people who wear shoes every day for extended periods. This typically occurs in people who have smelly feet.
This may not seem like much of an issue to some, but it can be a source of embarrassment and discomfort for many. It can even indicate the presence of fungi.
If you are concerned about smelly feet, you might be curious as to what causes it and how you can prevent it. Here’s what you need to know.
What Causes Smelly Feet?
Smelly feet are medically known as bromodosis. The first thing you should know is that foot odor is caused by bacteria and fungi, which thrive in moist environments. This is why closed footwear and active sweat glands are the main culprits of smelly feet.
Shoes are often worn with socks, a combination that traps moisture and gives bacteria and fungi the ideal conditions to flourish. Such bacteria feed off the sweat, then create an acid that gives off a bad smell or foot odor.
Fungi, on the other hand, also like warmth and moisture. This is what causes an athlete’s foot, which is related to itching and bad smells.
How to Prevent Foot Odor
Clip Your Toenails
Bacteria and fungi can thrive in between long toenails. You want to minimize the occurrence of this, so clipping your toenails is your best choice.
- Don’t Use the Same Pair of Shoes Consecutively
If you tend to wear shoes all day long, you need to have at least two pairs that you can wear alternately. This lets you air your shoes out so they can dry off effectively. This prevents bacteria and fungi from thriving.
Use the Right Pair of Socks
Socks may seem like a minor thing, but keep in mind that they not only help cushion your feet inside your shoes but can also help minimize the possibility of developing smelly feet. That is if you get the right kind.
You should look for moisture-absorbing socks with antibacterial properties. This way, your feet may be warm and moist, but your socks prevent bacterial growth.
Use Antibacterial Soaps
Another thing you should get is antibacterial soap to wash your feet at the end of the day. This kills bacteria, so your feet are cleansed every day.
Apply Antifungal Sprays
If fungi are your number one problem, your best bet is to get antifungal sprays. This addresses the problem before it happens.
Sweaty feet are a major issue for individuals with foot odor. You might want to use deodorizing powders with antiperspirant properties to minimize sweating that leads to smelly feet.
The Bottom Line
Smelly feet may be common, but it is also preventable. Now that you know what causes it and how to avoid it, you can confidently remove your shoes without worries. Want to make sure that you do everything right? You should go see a podiatrist who can help keep your feet clean, safe, and without foul smells.