Check out these simple ways to make your feet look their best.
Heather suffers from chronic cold feet, and no matter the season, they never warm up. She even reverts to using her husband, Colin, as her personal heater.
While Heather's frigid feet may just be a result of having less body fat than her husband, OB/GYN Dr. Lisa Masterson explains that they also can be caused by anemia, circulation problems, diabetes and a slow thyroid.
"All these things are not horrible, they're treatable, but you don't want them to progress," Dr. Lisa says. "It's good to [have them] checked out and make sure that none of these disorders are a problem.
"If you start to get numbness and tingling in the foot, you start to worry about real problems ... with diabetes," Dr. Lisa adds.
If you have never had a problem with cold feet, and it occurs out of nowhere, see a doctor. If you experience the six Ps of cold feet, it could be a sign of peripheral artery disease, a condition in which blood flow to the limbs can be restricted due to narrowed arteries.
Six Ps of Cold Feet
• If the foot becomes polar, or cold
• If the foot becomes pulseless
• If the foot suddenly becomes painful
• If you develop parasthesia, or numbness and tingling
• If you experience paralysis
• If the foot becomes pale
"If you don't get it looked at [immediately], you could lose your foot," Dr. Travis says. "This is more typical in older people who have heart disease or are smokers, but if you are one of those and you develop a suddenly cold foot, don't delay, go to the E.R."
To warm up cold feet, fill a fabric bag or small old pillowcase with rice, put it in the microwave for 30 seconds and wrap it around your foot. The rice will hold the heat and warm your feet!
Swelling with Pride
Swollen feet can occur on a hot day or on a long flight, and often plagues women who are pregnant. "Basically, your fluid volume doubles for the baby, so your blood volume doubles," Dr. Lisa says. "So you're going to have more retention, anyway."
The pressure placed on the blood vessels in the pelvis during pregnancy can decrease blood flow from the feet, causing swelling, as well.
Relieve Swollen Feet
• Wear open shoes that let the feet breathe
• Wear loose-fitting clothing
• Elevate the legs
• Swim in a pool to help relieve pressure
• Engage in sex
• Control your salt intake
• Get a massage, but if you're pregnant, be sure to consult with your doctor beforehand because it can cause uterine contractions
Learn how to give a great foot massage!
A pain in the foot could be benign, but it could also be a sign of an underlying problem. Make sure to see your doctor if you experience persistent pains.