Wouldn’t it be nice to stop the clock, turn back time, and reverse the effects of aging? Well, while there may not be an actual fountain of youth, there are plenty of ways to stay healthy as years go by – and that includes keeping your feet safe and happy, too! After all, your feet are aging right along with you and aging feet can be more prone to certain conditions over time. Watching for signs of common elderly foot problems will allow you to treat them promptly, stay active, and maintain a youthful outlook on life!
Here are some common ways aging affects feet:
- They get bigger! Feet tend to spread out and widen with age.
- They lose fat. The natural cushioning on the bottom of your foot thins and may need a little help from shoe inserts.
- Skin thins and dries out. Thin skin is more susceptible to injuries and infections, and lack of moisture can result in cracked and painful heels, as well as dry and brittle toenails.
- Tissues lose their elasticity. In addition to skin, tendons and ligaments can lose their ability to stretch, which can lead to stiffness and instability.
- You gain weight. Sure, feet may lose fat, but unfortunately, the rest of you may gain due to a slower metabolism. This can place added pressure on feet and cause swelling and other problems.
- There’s a higher risk of diabetes. This disease can have dangerous effects on feet! Keep glucose levels in check.
- Blood flow slows. Poor circulation can lead to nerve damage and impede healing. Exercise is your friend!
- Arthritis sets in. The wear and tear of joints over time can take its toll on aging feet.
- Deformities worsen. Because they are progressive in nature, bunions, hammertoes, and similar deformities worsen as you age.
Keeping a close eye out for these foot conditions, eating right, exercising, and making sure you keep up with changing shoe sizes as well as senior foot care appointments, will all go a long way toward helping you and your feet stay healthy and young (at least at heart)!
For help with aging feet and the problems that can arise over time, call (480) 963-9000 to reach our Chandler or Gilbert office and we’ll be happy to assist you.