Did you know that your feet can tell you much about your general health condition? Or warn you of some underlying health conditions?
From that pesky foot pain to more serious symptoms, such as numbness, your feet may often show symptoms of disease, before any other part of your body does.
If you notice any of the below telltale symptoms or signs in your feet, you may want consult your doctor:
What Your Feet Say About Your Health?
1. Bald Toes
Hair on toes is more prominent or obvious on men, but women also have fine hair on their toes. If you have observed an absence of hair on your feet, it could mean peripheral arterial disease or PAD, according to the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons.
What is PAD? PAD is the restriction of blood in the arteries of the leg, which may signal more widespread arterial disease that can cause heart disease.
2. Clubbed Toes
The shape of the toes, and often the fingers changes, in clubbing. The nails curve downward and are more rounded on top.
Lung disease is the most common underlying cause, but it can also be caused by liver, heart disease, digestive disorders, or certain infections. Also, at times, clubbing runs in families without any underlying disease.
3. Cold Feet
If your toes are always cold, one of the reason could be poor blood flow, which is a circulatory problem sometimes linked to high blood pressure, smoking, or heart disease. Also, the nerve damage of uncontrolled diabetes can make your feet feel cold.
Other possible reasons include anemia or hypothyroidism. A doctor can look for any underlying problems, or they may let you know that you simply have cold feet.
4. Enlarged Big Toe
An enlarged big toe may be, an inflammatory problem or gout.
“The sudden onset of a hot, red, painful and swollen joint need an immediate medical attention,” according to Dr. McAloon, as told in Prevention. Typical causes include inflammatory arthritis, gout, trauma or infection.
5. Heel Pain
The most known cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation where this long ligament attaches to the heel bone. The pain may be sharpest upon waking up and put pressure on the foot.
Excessive exercise, arthritis and poorly fitting shoes can also cause heel pain, as can tendonitis. Less common causes include a bone infection, a bone spur on the bottom of the heel, fracture or tumor.
6. Thick and Yellow Toenails
If one or more of your toenails starts to change color, separate from the skin, or thicken, you might have a fungal infection. People who have autoimmune diseases, and who are taking immunosuppressant medications are known to be more at risk of developing fungal infections, that is according to an article in the Laboratory of Taxonomy.
Other medications, such as corticosteroids, may also increase your risk of developing a fungal infection according, as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
7. Ulcer on Your Foot Bottom That Doesn’t Heal
If you have a wound on your foot that does not heal, it could mean a risk of diabetes. About 15% of people with diabetes develop an open sore or an ulcer, on the bottom of their foot. Approximately 14-24% of those people will require an amputation due to infection as per the American Podiatric Medical Association.
Individuals who use insulin are more at risk, as compared to those who manage their diabetes with other medications and diet.
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