Beat the Beach Day Blues

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Florida is famous for its beautiful beaches, but at FL Foot Health we know that a day of fun in the sun can quickly go south if you end up with a foot problem. Fortunately, a little advance planning can help you avoid the most common foot and ankle hazards at the beach.

Wear Your Flip-Flops—keeping your feet covered at the beach can prevent a number of potential foot problems. Sand and asphalt temperatures soar as the sun beats down on them. Even a quick sprint to or across the sand can result in a serious burn to bare feet. Sharp shells, glass and other objects that could cut your foot or deliver a puncture wound are hard to spot in the sand. Flip-flops or water shoes will prevent most of them from penetrating to your skin. Finally, wearing some kind of footwear will also help keep you from getting a fungal infection or athlete’s foot—both of which are spread by direct contact.

Reapply the Sunscreen—patients often don’t think much about their feet when applying sunscreen, but if the tops or bottoms of your feet are exposed to the sun for any amount of time, a sunburn will result. Use a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 and reapply after every time you go in the water or every two hours—whichever comes first.

Play it Safe—if beach volleyball, Frisbee or another sport activity will be part of your beach day fun, be sure you also pack a pair of sneakers in your beach bag. The unstable nature of the sand can cause an ankle sprain or other foot injury because it’s hard to maintain your balance when you’re moving quickly.

Stay Hydrated—this is good advice for your entire body, but for your feet, drinking enough water can help prevent painful swelling of the ankles.

We hope you enjoy many beautiful beach days this summer. If you do sustain an injury or come home with a rash or other unusual symptoms, however, make an appointment promptly with your podiatrist. Don’t have a podiatrist? We can help you find one with our online directory. For more information about ways to be proactive about foot health, contact us.