The majority of us don’t think about sweaty feet as a condition, but it actually is exactly that. If you have ever wondered if your sweaty feet were normal, you might be surprised to learn that not everyone has to battle them on an ongoing basis. If you have noticed that your socks are always damp or your sandals are always slippery, there might be more to the story. In this article, we will address sweaty feet and what they might mean for your overall health.
Defining Sweaty Feet
Though there are some instances where our feet are simply sweaty, ongoing sweating of the feet is known as hyperhidrosis. This unusual condition is known for its unpleasant core symptom: people who have it almost always have sweaty feet. When a person’s foot sweats naturally, it is generally caused by heat or something physical, like working out. For those who have hyperhidrosis, there really is no typical rhyme or reason for the overall sweatiness of their feet.
When a person has hyperhidrosis, their feet can sweat under any circumstance. It is not only from heat or exercise, but also under peculiar situations like when their feet are perfectly cool. Many of these people even notice their feet sweating when they aren’t wearing socks or shoes. Their feet simply sweat more than everyone else’s, which can come with its own challenges.
What Causes Sweaty Feet?
Sweaty feet can come from a wide range of causes, but they are most commonly caused by overactive physical responses. In a general sense, your feet will get the signal to trigger the sweat response in instances when it isn’t warranted. Our feet sweat to cool themselves down, which is why it is unusual when they are sweaty in a cool room.
For those with hyperhidrosis, it is all too common for symptoms to be exacerbated by unrelated triggers. For example, many with this condition notice that their feet get sweatier when they are stressed out. Others learn that sweaty feet run in their family, leading many to believe that there is a genetic component to this unusual condition. Hyperhidrosis can also be caused by a wide range of other conditions, including infections, diabetes, menstruation, and more.
What Complications Can Sweaty Feet Cause?
If you have excessively sweaty feet, you might think it is little more than a somewhat embarrassing problem. In reality, hyperhidrosis can lead to many other problems. Many experience problems with skin infections since the moisture provides a perfect environment for bacteria to thrive. It is also normal for these individuals to have excessively smelly feet due to increased bacteria growth. Some even run into issues with their socks and shoes causing discomfort due to the excessive moisture.
Managing Sweaty Feet
If you suffer from excessively sweaty feet, there are some steps that you can take to manage the problem. The use of athletic socks can be incredibly helpful. Moisture-wicking socks are excellent for absorbing some of that excess sweat so that your feet don’t end up saturated in it. There are also many different shoe options that can help to more comfortably manage the excess of sweat. If your sweating is severe, it might help to carry extra socks for particularly bad days.
To manage the overall health of your feet, it is crucial to maintain a high level of hygiene. Since sweaty feet are prone to bacterial buildup, it can be helpful to keep them as clean as possible. Take time to wash your feet regularly, night and day, using anti-bacterial soap. A good thorough cleaning can help you to improve your condition and its more unpleasant side effects.
If your feet only sweat when you’re hot or being active, chances are that you don’t have hyperhidrosis. However, if you have spent a lifetime battling your sweaty feet, it might be time to talk about solutions with your local podiatrist. At Wasatch Foot and Health, no foot is too sweaty for us to take on. You don’t have to live a life where your foot sweat inconveniences you. There are plenty of helpful ways to combat this!