Why Do My Heels Crack?
Updated: Oct 29, 2021
Dry and cracking skin is a common issue we treat at My Family Podiatry. These cracks can affect the heels, the side of the feet and even up to the toes. Whilst these cracks can initially be quite shallow, they can quickly become deeper and lead to pain, bleeding and a risk of infection.
Why Do They Crack?
There is a pad under your foot which compresses during standing and walking, acting as a shock absorber for the foot. As this pad compresses, the skin under your feet will stretch to accomodate this. If the skin under the feet is soft and supple, it will stretch without issue. However if the skin is dry and callused, this stretching will lead to cracking and splitting.
Some people are predisposed to dry and cracking skin. This can be due to conditions such as psoriasis, eczema or hormone related issues. For these individuals, extra care needs to be taken to prevent callusing and cracking of the feet.
How To Prevent Cracking Skin
The main way of preventing the skin on your feet cracking is by ensuring it remains soft. This can be done in two ways:
Using a moisturiser with a high urea concentration: At My Family Podiatry, we recommend Revive Daily, a 30% urea moisturiser which is quickly absorbed into the feet. Urea works to prevent moisture loss across the skin which ensures your skin does not become dry. Daily application of Revive Daily keeps the feet soft and supple.
Wearing enclosed shoes whenever possible: By wearing enclosed shoes, the pad under the foot is contained which prevents the skin being stretched. The skin is also protected from the weather which can stop them drying out.
How To Treat Cracked Feet
If your feet are already dry and cracked, the hard skin needs to be removed to stop it splitting further. At My Family Podiatry we do this through a combination of physical debridement and application of emollients.
Physical Debridement: We will painlessly remove the hard skin from the feet, revealing the healthy soft skin below. This allows the skin to stretch as normal and stop cracking.
Emollients: Revive Daily is our preferred emollient. The combination of 30% urea and 2% salicylic acid breaks down the hard skin as well as preventing moisture loss across the skin. This moisturiser also absorbs quickly into the skin, without any greasy or slimy feeling after application. This makes it perfect for use throughout the year.
If you have been suffering with dry or cracking feet, the team at My Family Podiatry are here to help you walk without pain. Call us on 3088 6116 or click the button below to get in touch.
Revive Daily is available in clinic or through www.revivedaily.com.au