How to treat and heal dry, cracked feet

Healing your heels

Dry, cracked skin can be painful. When cracks are present, open-toed shoes and slingbacks are pushed to the back shelf. The feet take the weight of our bodies throughout the day, and the added pressure can cause further splitting of the skin. Healing cracks in feet takes time and patience, but it can be done.

Prevention

If at all possible, the best thing you can do is prevent the skin on your feet from splitting in the first place. Daily care is required to maintain good skin integrity. Be sure to regularly exfoliate your feet, buffing away calluses. A foot or body scrub with sugar, salt or other granules can offer soothing exfoliation while moisturizing with oils. If you have conditions like corns, warts or bunions, see a podiatrist. Moisturize your feet daily - it's easy to do this at night and apply white cotton footies or socks to hold in the moisture overnight.

Treatment Options

  • Some people prefer foot soaks. You can use Epsom salts for healing. Keep in mind that salt water can burn some deep splits in skin, but salt does have amazing healing properties.
  • Paraffin baths can be very soothing and healing. However, you cannot use paraffin if you have splits in your skin. This would be something to begin doing after the cracks have healed. Exposing the delicate tissues of your inner feet to the heat and wax of paraffin treatments would not be beneficial - it's meant for the outer skin only.
  • Find a healing salve to use on your feet nightly. Skin does not heal easily when it is dry. Try Neosporin, Bag Balm, or Aquaphor Healing Ointment. After the cracks have healed, you can switch to a great lotion if you choose.
    • Wear lightweight, white cotton socks or footies with your salve or lotion. Colored socks can allow for dyes to enter your wounds.
  • Wear sensible footwear. If your feet have taken a beating, and your shoes rub, squeeze or create pressure in areas that have cracked, you need to wear something different to allow your skin to heal. Pressure directly added to cracked skin will not allow for healing.
  • If you are unable to manage your feet or have difficulty reaching them, get a pedicure regularly. The soak, exfoliation and massage can help with treatment and prevention of dry, cracked skin.
  • If cracked, non-healing skin persists, see a physician or podiatrist.

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Comments 15 comments

Anamika S profile image

Anamika S 8 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

One thing which would instantly reduce the pain is closing the cracks with a good adheive like quickfix. But before doing that soak the feet in lukewarm water and clean the feet and then pat dry to ensure that there is no dirt inside. Then apply an antiseptic cream inside the crack afterwhich the cracks can be closed. Once the crack iis closed the pain vanishes.


Anamika S profile image

Anamika S 8 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

Feviquik adhesive from the Fevicol company is a good one to use.


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 8 years ago from Tampa Author

Anamika - I have never heard of that product, but it sounds interesting! Hopefully it will help some of our visitors!


monitor profile image

monitor 8 years ago from The world.

This is great information for cracked feet, Kat07. Dealing with cracked skin on the feet is really troublesome so I'm going to take your advice on the prevention. Great hub!

Your fan.

Mon.


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 8 years ago from Tampa Author

Thanks, monitor!!! I used to make my own foot scrubs with granulated sugar and mineral oil. It's amazing the difference it can make!


sschilke profile image

sschilke 8 years ago

Kat07,

As the owner of two feet suffering from worst case of cracked skin in the known universe, I salute you. I will try out some of your suggestions and see what happens.

sschilke


Paula Andrea, MA profile image

Paula Andrea, MA 7 years ago from www.mode of cosmic therapy.com

I appreciate your words! The feet certainly need care, love, time and attention. I will heed your advice. Thanks.


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 7 years ago from Tampa Author

Paula, I hope some of these tips help your feet!


Household Income profile image

Household Income 7 years ago

The Paraffin bath was a new idea. Most of the family tried it iut with great success. Terrific. Your hub was greatly appreciated.


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 7 years ago from Tampa Author

Hey, I'm so glad it helped! I used to help my mom with paraffin baths for her feet - very SPA at home!


katrinasui profile image

katrinasui 5 years ago

Dry cracked feet is one of the common problems. Thanks for sharing these helpful tips.


mirahb 5 years ago

My feet are cracked and they burn. I stand on them all day 14 HRS a day. So what is the best solution?


mirahb 5 years ago

My feet are cracked and they burn. I stand on them all day 14 HRS a day. So what is the best solution?


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 5 years ago from Tampa Author

I would definitely start with a healing balm of some type with white cotton socks at night to start the healing process. After the cracks heal up some, you can start a more regular maitenance routine.


Jenny30 profile image

Jenny30 5 years ago from Canada

I actually perform pedicures on my clients and I have to say I come across a lot of people that have cracked and dry feet. I found the tips very useful! Thanks!

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