WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF CRACKED HEELS?
Cracked heels are caused by thick or dry skin, on and around your heels. The skin on our feet is usually more dry and dehydrated than the skin on the rest of the body and this is usually due to the fact that there are no oil glands on the soles of the feet. As a result, your heels may lose suppleness and elasticity due to lack of moisture. This can get worse from even the most gentle of pressures, such as a light walk. When dry skin starts to split it can lead to unsightly, painful and even bleeding cracked heels.
There are a number of common causes of cracked heels, including:
- Weight gain
- Inappropriate footwear
- Your genes
- Unhygienic conditions
- Nutrient deficiencies
Standing on your feet all day at work or home, especially on hard floors, can put unnecessary pressure on your heels and cause them to dry out. Furthermore, it’s crucial to take into account how much pressure we place on our feet throughout the day by standing and walking. The soles of the feet bear the brunt of our entire body weight, which is why the skin tends to be dry and hard.
Similarly, extra weight can put increased pressure on your heels which can cause calluses that can go on to crack. The heel is also forced expand more when it has to support a heavier weight and is more prone to cracking.
Walking without shoes or in footwear that offers very little protection, such as thongs can make you more prone to cracked heels.
If your parents’ heels are particularly prone to drying out and cracking, your skin is likely to be similar.
Fungal infections, like tinea, can cause your skin to dry out and crack more than usual
Without enough vitamins, minerals, zinc and other nutrients, your skin can’t function as well as it needs to, to remain soft and supple.
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