Dry, cracked heels are often due to neglect of our feet, but as we age, dry, cracked heels become more common.
Also, the constant pressure of walking on our feet can lead to cracked, dry heels. While having dry, cracked heels isn’t a dangerous condition usually, cracks in the heels can lead to infection, especially in diabetics or those with poor immune systems.
Causes of Dry Heels
Common causes of dry cracked heels include:
- Thick, calloused skin on the heel that makes it easily crack
- Obesity, causing more pressure on the heels
- Athlete’s foot
- A medical condition such as diabetes or thyroid disease
- Poorly fitted shoes
- Lack of vitamins
- Standing for prolonged periods of time
- Unhygenic conditions
Home Remedies for Dry Heels
Fortunately, there are several treatments you can carry out at home to treat dry, cracked heels. Try the following remedies to smooth and soften the skin:
•Apply vegetable oil.
Apply vegetable oil, olive oil or shortening to clean, dry feet. You can even leave this on overnight. Wear socks to prevent the oil from rubbing off onto your sheets.
• Soak with lemon juice.
Once a week, soak feet in lemon juice for approximately ten minutes. After soaking, gently scrub heels with a foot brush or loofa.
• Use a good moisturizer.
Purchase a moisturizer for extremely dry skin. There are even products on the market specifically for dry, cracked heels. Use daily.
• Rub with banana.
Rub a ripe banana on cracked heels. Leave this on the heels for about 15 minutes and then rinse thoroughly.
• Apply petroleum jelly.
After washing feet, apply a thick layer of petroleum jelly to the heels. Cover with cotton socks and leave overnight.
• Try a paraffin wax treatment.
Soak feet in a hot wax spa for 15 to 20 minutes. Do this several times a week for smooth, soft heels.
Exfoliate heels using a commercial exfoliating product, or make your own scrub:
One homemade recipe consists of raw oats, honey and apple cider vinegar. Grind the oats and mix with apple cider vinegar and honey to form a paste. Apply to heels, leave 15 minutes. Rinse thoroughly.
Another exfoliating recipe consists of cornmeal, wheat germ and oatmeal. Mix together in equal portions. Apply to heels in a circular motion. Leave for 10 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.
A third exfoliating recipe is olive oil and sugar or salt. Mix equal parts of sugar or salt with olive oil. Mix thoroughly. Apply to heels, rubbing gently in a circular motion. Rinse after 10 minutes.
Other Tips for Dry, Cracked Heels
• Vitamins and Minerals
The following vitamins and minerals can improve the condition of dry, cracked heels:
- Vitamin E
- Omega 3 fatty acids
• Massage the feet.
• Soothe feet by alternating hot and cold bath water.
• Avoid going barefoot.
• Keep the feet clean and dry.
• Apply moisturizer to heels after every shower; the moist skin helps to seal in the moisture.
These dry heel home remedies should provide some relief to your dry, cracked heels. If you continue to experience dry, cracked heels, make an appointment with your physician. This is especially important if you are diabetic, as cracks in the heels could lead to infection.
If you have a dry heel remedy then please share below!
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