Dry and Cracked Skin

Dry skin on the sole of the foot is very common particularly on the sole of the foot. A skin that is dry is one that is lacking in moisture, this means that the skin is no longer supple, is prone to cracks. When skin is very dry it is prone to infection. Fungus and bacteria often utilise these cracks as a portal of entry to the body.

Dry skin occurs when the outer layer of the epidermis (this is the top layer of the skin) becomes dehydrated. Dehydrated skin loses elasticity and is therefore prone to split and crack.

Dry skin can occur for a number of reasons, including:

  • Medication
  • Athletes foot
  • Too aggressive washing
  • Soap and Detergents
  • Ageing
  • Lack of drinking water
  • Cold Weather
  • Certain medical conditions

Dry skin can often lead to cracked skin. Cracked heels are often known as fissures.

Cracked heels are commonly caused by dry skin. For most people this is a nuisance and a cosmetic problem but even the everyday acts of standing and walking on our feet places enough pressure onto dry, brittle skin that small cracks open in the top layer of the skin.

When the splits are cracks are deep, they can be painful to stand on the skin can bleed in severe cases leading to infection. Wearing open backed or thin soled shoes can aggravate the condition!

If your feet are very dry or cracked then why not visit one of our podiatrists here at the Stride Foot and Leg Clinic who will remove the dry skin and advise on the best way to keep it hydrated. It is important that the skin on your feet is kept in good condition to prevent pain and infection!

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