Bromodosis is the medical word for excessive foot odor and it is a very common medical condition. Anyone can be affected: men, women, athletes, desk jockeys, older adults, even children. All of these people have one thing in common, and it causes their bromodosis: perspiration. Your body has 2 to 4 million sweat glands located on your body, 250,000 of which are located in your feet. When you sweat and perspiration accumulates on the feet and in the socks and shoes, bacteria flourish. Those bacteria then feed off dead skin cells and create foot odor.
The good news is that most bromodosis can be managed with some simple changes in your daily routine. Here are some suggestions from podiatrist James M. McKee, DPM, FACFAS that you can implement on your own. If you give these a try and don’t see a change, it’s time to visit the office.
- Wash your feet with antibacterial soap twice daily and dry them well.
- Anti-odor sprays and powders can be effective. Treat your feet every day.
- Purchase socks made of natural fibers such as cotton or wool. Start your day with a clean pair and change them at least twice a day. Pack an extra pair with your lunch for a midday refresher.
- If you sweat through your socks, change them, regardless of how long it’s been since you last did so. Keep extra pairs handy in case an urgent situation arises.
- Don’t wear shoes without socks. Your feet will sweat more than ever. Odor will become trapped on your skin and embedded in the shoes themselves.
- Regularly rotate your footwear. Invest in an extra pair so that you can alternate.
- After removing your shoes, spray them with disinfectant to kill bacteria.
- Most athletic shoes can be machine washed and dried. Toss your sneakers in the washing machine every few weeks and make sure they’re dry before you wear them again.
- Soak your feet once a week. Use warm water with Epsom salts, black tea bags, or essential oils including tea tree, thyme, eucalyptus, and peppermint, all of which have been shown to be effective at combating foot odor.
Are you embarrassed by chronic or severe foot odor? It’s time to see a podiatrist. Call Podiatry Group of Annapolis, P.A. at 410-224-4448 or contact us online to schedule an appointment with Dr. James M. McKee in our friendly, convenient office on Solomons Island Road. He’ll be happy to examine your feet, determine the source of your issue, and work with you to create an individualized plan for treatment and follow up.