Cracked heels, also known as heel fissure is a foot condition where the sole of your foot becomes extremely dry and cracks.
While cracked heels as a condition is known to affect both genders including children, women are known to experience it more.
This condition also occurs in severity. You might have a case of cracked heel, but experience just dryness with mild cracking, or you could have the severe case where the cracks are so deep, they bleed.
While very common, the good news with this condition is that its very easy to treat and it can heal within a few weeks using medications bought from your local pharmacy or homemade remedies if you prefer.
Before treating your cracked heels, it would be great to know what causes it so you know how to avoid a reoccurrence.
Here are Some Common Cracked Heels Causes to Look Out for
If you find your heels get dry and cracked often, here are some possible reasons that may explain its occurrence:
1. You go about barefooted or wear open-back sandals a lot. When you do this, the back of your foot gets exposed and is prone to dryness and cracks.
2. You make use of harsh creams or soaps that strip your foot of its natural oil, making it dry and prone to cracking.
3. You stand for too long hence putting pressure on your feet.
4. You wear shoes that have very poor fitting.
5. You are obese.
6. You’ve been diagnosed of certain medical conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, psoriasis, or juvenile plantar dermatosis.
7. You have a vitamin and minerals deficiency.
8. Side effect of certain medications.
9. You’re deficient in omega 3 fatty acids and zinc.
10. The weather is extremely dry.
Risk Factors of Cracked Heels
Some people are more prone to cracked heels and should be on the lookout for these factors to minimize the chances of it occurring.
Factors to watch include:
1. Being diabetic
3. Being obese
3. Having Athlete foot
4. Having psoriasis or eczema
5. Having flat feet
6. Being diagnosed with hypothyroidism.
Effective Cracked Heels Treatment
As earlier said, there are quite a few remedies for cracked heels with each bringing the desired result in record time.
Here’s one of such treatment using candle.
The Candle and Baking Soda Method
Ingredients to be Used
– Bicarbonate Soda (Baking Soda)
– Pure Organic Coconut Oil
This is a pretty simple cracked heels remedy and you can be done with it in an hour or less. Here’s how you’ll go about it.
1. Using a sharp knife, cut the candle into bits and place in a bowl. The idea is to melt the candle and you’ll achieve this faster when the it’s cut in bits.
2. Next, microwave this candle for a minute or until the candle melts and set this aside.
You might also want to submerge the melted candle in another bowl with boiling water so it doesn’t solidify as you proceed to the next step.
3. For the next step, place two tablespoons of baking soda and one of coconut oil in another bowl.
4. Next, stir this mixture until it is well mixed.
5. The next step is to scrub at your cracked heels using the baking soda and coconut oil solution.
For a more effective result, you want to use a pumice stone or a foot scrubber to scrub at your heels. You should however scrub gently so you don’t deepen the cracks.
6. Once done, let the baking soda and coconut oil remedy sit on your heels for a minute or two before proceeding to the next stage in your cracked heels treatment.
1.For this stage, you bring out your melted candle and let it cool just a bit. It should be cool enough to not sting when it comes in contact with your skin, but hot enough that you feel the heat.
3. Slather this liquid candle over your foot until every inch is covered.
Candle dries pretty fast and this will solidify quickly so you’ll want to work fast.
4. Once you have both heels covered, let this treatment sit for five minutes and then gently break the solid candle masks off.
Melted candle is a potent remedy for cracked heels as the heat from it penetrates to bring about the healing needed.
This cracked heels cream can be kept for up to five days, so you can repeat the treatment a few more times.
Other Remedies for Cracked Heels
The Warm Water Soak
This method is pretty simple and can be done in minutes.
The way it works, you soak your feet in warm water for 20-25 minutes. This will serve to soften your heels, making it easier to scrub and exfoliate using a pumice stone, a woofah, or a foot scrubber.
Once done, apply coconut oil or petroleum jelly to lock in the moisture on your heels.
The Honey Method
Honey has been known to be antimicrobial and antibacterial which is why it makes for a good cracked heel treatment.
To use, again, soak your feet in warm water to which you have added half cup honey for 20 minutes.
Once done, scrub lightly using a pumice stone. Rinse away the dead skin cells and then apply a thin film of honey over your heels.
The Aloe Vera Method
Soak your heels in warm water for 20-25 minutes, then apply a generous film of aloe vera gel.
Lemon Juice and Vinegar Method
You can also treat cracked heels using lemon juice and vinegar solution.
Place half cup vinegar and half cup fresh lemon juice in a basin filled halfway with water.
The acidic nature of this solution works to peel off the dead skin layer on your heels, leaving you with a softer skin.
The Heal Balm Method
You can also apply a heal balm to your feet after giving them a soak.
Heal balms are great for cracked heels as they exfoliate the dead skin cells, then go right ahead to moisturize and soften it.
The Vinegar and Listerine Foot Soak
Using a combination of vinegar and listerine as a foot soak also makes for a great remedy to eliminate cracks from your heels.
How to Prevent Cracked Heels
Its important you know how to prevent cracked heels so it doesn’t reoccur. Here are a few ways you can achieve this.
1. Wear a footwear often, and try to wear one that’s covers your feet fully.
2. Wear a pair of soaks to bed, after applying a thin film of petroleum jelly to your heels.
3. Ensure you aren’t lacking in vitamins or minerals.
4. Watch the cream and other skincare products you use to be sure they aren’t too harsh to strip your skin of its natural oils.
5. Try not to stand for too long. If you must stand, you severe consider taking sitting breaks at intervals.