Often overlooked, our feet actually make excellent diagnostic tools that can be used by your doctor to find clues potentially connecting to an array of health issues. However, you don’t always need to be an expert to figure out what your feet have to say regarding your health – just look out for warning signs. Listed below are 10 things your feet are telling you about your health.
1. Dry, shedding skin – if the skin on the ball of your feet or around the heel is cracked, flaky, or dry, it could be a red flag indicating a thyroid condition. The thyroid gland creates hormones that manage your blood pressure, metabolic rate, tissue development, and nervous system activities. Dry, shedding skin can indicate an issue with your thyroid gland.
2. Foot numbness – Foot numbness is pretty common, but if you are experiencing it on a regular basis then that could be alarming. Diabetes disrupts blood circulation to your feet, which may mean that cuts or wounds take longer to heal, leaving you more vulnerable to infection.
3. Foot ache – Feet pain after a long is understandable, but sometimes your stilettos are not to blame. That’s because your pain may stem from a stress fracture, a small bone crack.
4. Clubbed Toes – In clubbing, the shape of the fingers and toes change. The nails become more rounded on top and more curved downward. Lung disease is the most prominent cause, but liver, heart and digestive issues, as well as certain infections can be associated the problem. Sometimes, clubbing is heredity is genetic and not a sign of some disease.
5. Swollen feet – Persistent feet swelling may indicate poor blood circulation, a blood clot, or an issue with the lymphatic system. An underactive thyroid or a kidney disease may also lead to foot swelling.
6. Burning feet – A burning feeling in the feet is typical among diabetics and relates to nerve damage. It can also be a result of a vitamin B deficiency, kidney disorder, athlete’s foot, poor blood circulation, or hypothyroidism.
7. Itchy feet – Scaly, itchy skin may be due to a common fungal infection known as athlete’s foot. A bad reaction to certain skin care products or chemicals (known as contact dermatitis) can also lead to itchiness, as well as dry patches and redness.
8. Foot spasms – sudden, sharp jabs of foot pain is the hallmark of a cramp or muscle spasm, which can last up to minutes. Muscle fatigue, dehydration, and imbalances in calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, or potassium may be some of the causes.
9. Dark spot – Melanoma, the most severe kind of skin cancer, can develop in areas not regularly exposed to the sun, such the feet. A dark spot on the foot may be a symptom of skin cancer.
10. Yellow toenails – Yellow toenails are a sign of an overall poor health. A fungal infection often results in hard, yellow toenails. Other possible causes include lymphedema, psoriasis, lung disorders, or rheumatoid arthritis.