Do you know that the craters on the moon have names? You can find them on the map Google created specifically for the luminary lunar surface. Some of them are even visible to the naked eye when you look at its surface from the comfort of your backyard at night. So, you’ve heard of the lunar type of crater, but have you ever considered the craters on your feet? Heel fissures can start as a small patch of dry skin, but can develop into large cracks and imprints at the back of your sole that would make the moon envious.
Houston, We Have a Problem - Heel Fissures
Also known as cracked heels, this condition starts out as a small, hard, dry crevice on the outer edge of the back heel. For some people, this is only a small problem. However, people with diabetes should be very careful to maintain good foot health, because dry skin can create big problems. The tiny tears can make their way further into the heel and create open wounds, or fissures, that ooze blood and create pain when you walk on the cuts.
Diabetics are more susceptible because spikes in blood sugar levels cause them to suffer nerve damage in their feet, which means they lose important pain signals the feet would usually send if you stepped on a nail or stubbed your toe. They also have poor circulation in the feet, which slows healing time and heightens the risk of infection. Nerve damage and poor circulation might result in limb amputation if the problem gets bad enough.
How the Cracks Land on Your Feet
Wearing open-backed shoes and sandals can give you major dry skin that certainly increases your risk of getting this condition. If you have a crack in your heel, running is going to aggravate it. The stress splits the sore open and can make an even bigger wound. Conditions during the winter are a favorable time for fissures to develop, since the air is so dry. Those same dry conditions can also be felt in places where it’s hot the entire year round, so nobody is immune from this dry skin epidemic.
Prepare for Takeoff - Leave Craters Behind
Treatment for heel fissures is easy and involves one word: moisture. If you’re seeing the symptoms develop, start putting on lotion at least twice a day. Find an ultra-thick body butter or salve that you can smother on your heels to lock in moisture and keep the cracks from causing any additional damage. Good times to apply the moisturizer would be after your morning shower and before you go to bed at night. While you’re in the shower, make sure to rub down the rough spots with a pumice stone to keep the skin soft.
To moisturize from the inside out, try drinking more water. You can also invest in a humidifier for your home that will put some moisture back into the air. If you have diabetes, you should call us whenever you notice a problem, even if it’s small.
Craters on the moon are better than craters on your feet. If your condition hasn’t responded to the at-home treatments we suggested, give the Richardson Podiatry Center in Richardson, TX, a call at (972) 690-5374. Dr. Gene Reister can fix you up and offer treatments for heel fissures that are out of this world.