Smelly Feet

The parts of the body that contains the most sweat glands are hands and feet. There are about 3000 sweat glands in each square inch. So sweating happens more on these areas and causes smelly feet. Smelly feet happen because of two reasons and the first one is shoes. Shoes are the carriers of bacteria and when your perspiration interacts with the bacteria it creates bad odor. In this case, the treatments that you can try are given below

  • Use Medicated insole.
  • Try to avoid wearing shoes whenever possible and let your feet breathe.
  • Avoid wearing the same pair of shoes two days in a row in order to give them time to dry out (Remove the soles to facilitate drying).
  • Use sports socks with ventilation panels that helps to keep feet dry.
  • Use antibacterial socks which are impregnated with chemicals in order to discourage the bacteria that spreads odor and feed on sweat.

The other reasons for smelly feet can be an inherited condition called hyperhidrosis or sweating excessively and are seen basically among men. Hormonal changes, some medications, stress and fluid intake might also be reasons. The treatments that can be tried are given below:

  • Soak feet in strong black tea half an hour daily for 7 days. The tannic acid in the tea helps to destroy bacteria and close the pores and keeps the feet dry for longer periods.
  • 10% benzoyl peroxide or antibacterial soap (to kill bacteria), turnip or radish juice (natural deodorants), talcum powder, surgical spirit or baking soda (to dry feet) etc can be used.
  • Soak feet in mouthwash or in the warm water which contains juice of soaked oatmeal for 10 minutes. A solution made with two tablespoons of Epsom salts in two quarts of warm water or that of one part vinegar and 2 parts water can also be used.

If the above tips don’t help with your foot odor problem, see your family physician or a podiatrist, who may prescribe a solution of aluminum chloride hexahydrate. For Treating Excessive Sweating, a form of electrolysis called iontophoresis is used. A surgery can be done in the worst cases of hyperhidrosis where a surgeon cuts the nerve that controls sweating but may increase sweating in other body parts.