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Richardson Podiatry Center

Stop Foot Odor


Smelly shoes

People don’t generally expect feet to smell pleasant, but a strong, foul odor is a condition that should be treated. Even better is when you are able to prevent it from happening in the first place. At Richardson Podiatry Associates, we don’t want you to be embarrassed on account of foot odor, so let’s take a look at this condition and what can be done about it.

Causes of Foot Odor

There are various factors that can contribute to that less-than-pleasant aroma drifting up from your feet. Interestingly, the main cause of foot odor, sweat, doesn’t actually smell. Contrary to popular belief, sweat is odorless on its own accord. The reason we associate a smell with it is that bacteria that lives on the body digests sweat and the resulting smell is what happens as it is broken down.

Other causes of smelly feet include the food you eat and potential medical conditions. With regard to foods that contribute to the smell, the main offenders are those that contain sulfur, induce sweat, or are made from refined carbohydrates. In some instances, the foul smell is the result of an infection and requires definite treatment.

Foot Odor Treatment

The condition can certainly be embarrassing, but the good news is that foot odor can be treated. If you are so inclined, you can pick up disinfecting sprays, creams, and other odor-eating products at the store and these typically work well for mild to moderate cases. Home remedies include using tea, salt water, sodium bicarbonate, and even bleach, but make sure you check with our office first.

For cases that are more severe, we might recommend prescription-strength products to help improve your condition.

Preventing Foot Odor

Even better than knowing that there is treatment for the smell is the fact that it can be prevented. Some of the actions you can take to minimize or prevent foot odor include:

  • Wash your feet every day with mild soap and warm water.
  • Wear fresh socks daily, especially moisture-wicking ones that keep your feet cool and dry.
  • Spray your shoes every night with a disinfecting spray.
  • Keep your feet dry as often as possible.
  • Alternate between two pairs of shoes every other day.
  • Use baking soda to kill bacteria in your shoes.
  • Wash your socks inside out to remove dead flakes of skin.

Caring for Funky Smelling Shoes

Shoes that smell awful are also an issue that can be addressed. Sure, you can throw away a pair that is emitting the funky odor, but you may just end up finding yourself in the same situation if you do not tackle the root cause. Instead, combine foot odor treatment with the following tips to salvage your shoes:

  • Stuff your shoes with newspaper and leave it in there overnight. Remove the paper in the morning and the footwear will smell better.
  • Place dryer sheets inside the shoes when not in use.
  • Pick up insoles made from cedar material. This will address the root cause of the problem and eliminate funky smells.
  • Wiped down your shoes, inside and out, with a cotton ball saturated in rubbing alcohol and then leave them sit for a while.

Extensive Foot Care in Richardson, TX

Whatever the nature of your foot or ankle issue, Richardson Podiatry Associates is here to help you and your loved ones. If you are having the embarrassing problem of feet that simply do not smell right, get in contact with us. Dr. Reister can assess your situation, determine the core issue, and then create a treatment plan for you. Give us a call at (972) 690-5374 or take advantage of our online form to schedule your appointment today.