Twin Falls Podiatrists Have Tips for Helping Student Athletes Avoid Smelly Feet 

There are more sweat glands in our feet than anywhere else in our bodies. But as you know, often where there’s sweat, there’s odor, and no one knows this better than student athletes who play hard. At Canyon Foot + Ankle, we receive a lot of visits from athletes who want to ensure they receive a fast, accurate diagnosis and effective treatment for whatever is causing their feet to stink. Here’s what you should know.

Causes of Smelly Feet 

Athletes aren’t the only people who struggle with foot odor—this problem can happen to anyone, including kids. Athletes just tend to experience it often because they’re more likely to encounter some of the typical reasons for it, including but not limited to: bare-feet-with-green-swirls-indicating-smelly-feet

  • Sweaty shoes that don’t get a chance to dry out between wearings
  • Footwear made with fabrics that don’t breath well 
  • Rewearing dirty socks
  • Hormonal changes 
  • Not washing feet often enough or thoroughly enough
  • Bacteria that live on the feet
  • Spending long periods of time standing
  • Stress and anxiety that increase sweating
  • Genetic factors 
  • Tight-fitting shoes
  • Diseases such as hyperhidrosis that prompt more sweating on your feet, hands, armpits, and face
  • Different types of medication that have sweating as a side effect
  • Certain foods like garlic and spicy foods that can seep through the pores

Walking barefoot on a locker room floor, pool deck, or gym floor increases the risk of student athletes catching different types of fungal diseases, such as athlete’s foot or fungal toenails. A foul odor is often a symptom of both of these conditions, too. 

Ways to Prevent Foot Odor 

Generally, as long as there’s not an underlying health reason, a combination of sweat plus microorganisms that thrive in moist environments is why you have stinky feet. When one or both of these conditions are removed, there doesn’t tend to be a smell. 

So here are some of our foot doctors’ top recommendations to reduce unpleasant odors:

  • Alternate your athletic shoes frequently so you always have a dry pair. 
  • Wash your shoes and their insoles as often as possible.
  • Wear shoes and socks that contain breathable materials. Socks should be cotton or otherwise moisture-wicking. Choose footwear made with leather, fabric, and mesh.
  • Put on clean socks every day and change them whenever your feet get sweaty.
  • Wash your feet with soap and water every day, and dry thoroughly, especially between toes.
  • Keep toenails clean and trimmed.
  • Go barefoot when inside your home to allow your feet to dry. 
  • Wear protective footwear whenever you’re in a communal space where other people walk barefoot.
  • Take breaks from standing periodically while working.
  • Sleep without socks on.

Home Remedies for Treating Smelly Feet

If you're certain the problem is mostly due to sweat and bacteria, try these self-care treatments to manage the problem.

Soak Your Feet

Mix Epsom salt or vinegar with warm water and soak your feet for up to 20 minutes once a week to remove bacteria from your feet. However, this method isn’t recommended for people with open sores.

Keep Your Feet Dry

Any time your feet get wet, dry them completely, paying special attention to the area between your toes. To help reduce moisture, apply talcum powder or antiperspirant cream to the soles of your feet.

Use a Disinfectant on Your Shoes

Use this remedy for both your athletic and street shoes to prevent fungal cross-contamination. Depending on the shoe's style, you can try rubbing alcohol, a baking soda and vinegar mixture, disinfecting sprays or wipes, or even a UVC sanitizing light. Always allow your shoes to air dry completely before you wear them again.

Rely on Professional Care From Canyon Foot + Ankle to Get Rid of Odor Problems

If the options listed above don’t eliminate smelly feet after 10 days or so, or you’ve noticed pain or a wound, it may be time to schedule an exam with one of our Burley and Twin Falls podiatrists for a thorough assessment and diagnosis. We’ll address contributing factors to the odor, assess your footwear, and provide treatment suggestions for any related health issues. For some conditions, we might also prescribe medication or refer you to a specialist. Our ultimate goal is to give you world-class foot care right here in Magic Valley.
Post A Comment