Smelly feet? What causes them? Is there a treatment that one can use or even a way to prevent your feet from embarrassingly announcing your presence?
You know. Smelly feet cause discomfort. That moment when you have paid someone a visit and you have to remove your shoes. Your heart is racing. Your mind is wondering whether it would be okay to just walk in with the shoes? If anything, to save yourself from having to walk in and stop the party because your feet are too smelly for anyone’s comfort?
No one knows this discomfort better than Thomas.
“I always feel so embarrassed whenever am invited to a friend’s house where there is a carpet, and I have to remove my smelly shoes,” says Thomas Osayo, an advocate at Gishai and company advocates.
“This condition limits me from visiting my friends and sometimes important meetings. I give lame excuses for not attending events and gatherings, especially where I know I will have to take off my shoes”, narrates Thomas.
“I feel bad about the way I lie because of my condition…I have tried applying different types creams and powder but after a week or two, I get back to square one”, says Thomas.
“I remember my friend Collins one day told me to sock my legs in a mixture of water, baking powder and aloe vera, but it never worked!” narrates Thomas (laughing)
What Causes Smelly Feet?
Bromodosis, or smelly feet, is a common medical condition as Dr Dorcas Shanzu explains.
“Bromodosis is an embarrassing issue. But it is not your problem. In most cases, it is caused by a lack of ventilation for your feet. Your feet will smell when the perspiration has nowhere to evaporate hence causing the bacteria on the feet to produce isovaleric acid, causing the odour”, explains Dr Dorcas Shanzu, a podiatrist from Eldoret hospital.
“There are so many myths surrounding the cause of this problem. The funny one that I recently heard was that one should apologize to whoever the victim had stepped on his/her ‘shamba’ without permission”, narrates Dr Shanzu laughing.
“People still relate smelly feet with witchcraft in this century, “adds Dr Shanzu.
“Most people fail to understand that poor hygiene like wearing a pair of socks on a daily basis without washing them leads to smelly feet”.
Other things that can lead to smelly feet include;
- Reactions from certain medications,
- Diseases like athlete’s foot- skin infection caused by a fungus
- Harsh environments
- Wearing poor-quality shoes and over-wearing shoes.
- Poor diet
What are ways of preventing smelly feet?
“Simple hygiene practices can help in preventing smelly feet. For instance, wear socks made with natural fibres, cotton, wool or other moisture-wicking fibres to ensure ventilation. Avoid repeating a pair of socks the whole week without washing and drying them”, explains Dr Shanzu.
“Clean your feet with an anti-bacterial soap to reduce bacteria causing odour. Wear good quality shoes with features that allow ventilation, such as leather uppers or athletic shoes with mesh uppers”, says Dr Shanzu. “If possible, give your shoes a break. Have at least 2 or more pairs for daily exchange”, advices Dr Shanzu.
According to the doctor, keeping your feet dry always is another way of preventing smelly feet. During the rainy season, wear shoes that do not allow water inside.
When it is hot, void wearing tight shoes that trap moisture.
There is a solution
Dr Shanzu says there is a solution for smelly feet if you are grappling with this already. “Over the counter, Antibacterial foot powder can be used in treating the smelly feet. Also, Athlete’s Foot cream or antifungal shoe spray”.
If for some reason you have tried all these measures and the smelly feet persist, you should seek a doctors advice.
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