Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, many of the winter festivities can have you on your feet. When preparing large meals during this winter season, make sure you remember to give your feet, legs, and back a break from time to time. Standing still or shuffling around the house for long periods of time can promote the formation of Heel spurs, bunions and hammertoes, or make these conditions worse. Between standing around the stove, bending or reaching to grab dishes, and strategically setting a nice dinner table, there are several tips to consider to make the process a little bit more forgiving on your lower extremities.

  1. 45 to 15. For every 45 minutes that you spend standing, give yourself fifteen minutes to sit down and rest your feet. If things are really crazy, and you don’t think you can time out your standing and sitting, just remember to sit and rest your legs and feet as often as possible. This means removing any footwear if possible.
  2. Change your socks on a regular basis. There is no better feeling than a nice fresh, warm pair of socks during the winter. Be sure to change into a clean pair of socks at least twice a day. This will not only help keep your feet warm, but will also provide a nice clean environment for your feet.
  3. Compression socks. Compression socks of the ankle and calf are becoming very popular among adults of all ages. Compression socks and leggings help reduce the formation of varicose veins, blood clots, and swelling of the ankles, calves, and legs. You can buy sleek, comfortable compression socks of virtually any color (not just the flesh color your Grandma used to wear). When new to compression socks, make sure you select a sock that isn’t too tight in the beginning. After regular use, you can begin to wear compression socks of tighter constriction.
  4. Kitchen footwear. When around the house, and working in the kitchen for the holidays, make sure you fasten your feet with proper foot attire. Slippers, clogs, slip-ons, and flats are common shoes that are worn while cooking or preparing the house for guests. It is imperative that these shoes fit well, are in good condition, are snug and not loose fitting, and offer support. You should seriously consider purchasing insoles for these household shoes to help provide support.
  5. Bare feet or in socks. It is important to walk around without shoes on for at least 20 minutes every day. Wearing socks can help keep your feet warm, especially when household floors can be cold or drafty in the winter. If you choose to wear socks in the kitchen, try wearing socks with small grip material on the bottoms so that slipping does not occur on surfaces such as linoleum, wood, or smooth tile floors. If not wearing shoes in any kitchen environment, be sure no to spill any hot materials on your feet; the last thing you want to happen this winter are second degree burns.

Give your feet a break this winter season with Healthmark Foot and Ankle Associates.

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