Some helpful tips for
We can gain healthy toenails with a little care and attention.
Once our feet and toenails are good condition and in a healthy state, a little bit of 'preventative maintenance' goes a long way to keeping them looking and feeling good.
Here we have compiled a list of basic things you can do from home to take care of, and improve, the condition of your toenails and feet and one step closer to good healthy toenails.
A toenail in good condition should be light pink in color and have a nice natural 'shine' to it.
They grow from the nail base and up towards the tip, air or oxygen for the nail is gained through the small white-ish crescent shape at the toenail base called the lanula.
A thin film of skin will sometimes grow over the lanula thus blocking the supply of air to the toenail root.
This thin film should be very gently pushed back to the bed of the nail and carefully trimmed clean.
Cuticle care should really only be done by a qualified person like a Podiatrist or Chiropodist or even a Pedicurist trained in Cuticle care.
People with or any blood circulation problems should always seek advice from a Diabetes qualified Chiropodist or Podiatrist or their Doctor for this part of a pedicure.
The skin pushed back to the toenail bed forms a dried or hardened rim of dead skin around the nail base and is termed the
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Ten Top Tips
to Healthy Feet and Healthy Toenails
1: Nails are made from a strong protein named Keratin, and they develop well if you are eating
a good balanced diet
which should include protein, vitamins and minerals.
The best non-animal sources of keratin or vitamins that help the production of keratin include beans, seeds and nuts, and green leafy vegetables.
Find cooking ideas and easy healthy recipes good for your toenails on
Choose Healthy Food
Eating a good balanced diet will not only lead you to healthy toenails, but will improve the condition of your hair and skin too.
can also be a great source of providing the necessary or required vitamins.
2: Bathing your feet once a day will promote healthy feet and nails.
Use mildly warm water (approx room temperature) and a mildly antiseptic soap.
Wash under and between your toes.
A gentle massage motion cleans, disinfects and helps restore the blood circulation in your feet and toes.
3: Dry your feet and toes properly, with a soft clean towel dry between and under the toes.
This removes that moist condition that certain fungal infections like to breed breed in.
4: Inspect and trim your toenails with good quality toenail clippers or toenail scissors.
Usually once a month is enough for this. This is where you can learn all about how to do your own
It is how you cut the toenails that is important.
They should be cut straight across never down the sides or around the top.
Cutting down the sides only encourages ingrowing toenails.
Never cut them too short, always leave enough so that 'your nail can do its job' that means it should be long enough to protect the toe from undue pressure and slight trauma.
Cutting them too short can also encourage ingrowing toenails.
If you already have a toenail giving pain see ingrown toenails for information on how to improve the condition.
5: After trimming use a good, mildly antiseptic foot powder and gently massage it into your skin.
These 3 actions above are so important, it gives you that 'quality time' with your bare feet.
As you perform these functions you may also notice any little signs that are pointing towards some possible developing condition, conditions that, with a little treatment, you can avoid.
Healthy toenails are not only feel good they are a pleasure to show off, leaving the options of wearing open toed shoes or sandals, which also are healthier for the feet.
6: For healthy feet and healthy toenails the correct fitting socks & shoes is important.
is essential, and especially for young children as their feet and nails are still in the stages of development.
Wool socks are probably the best natural fiber to have next to your skin, and they should be loose fitting and not tight around the leg as it can restrict blood circulation to the feet and toes.
A clean pair of socks every day and after every foot bathe.
Good shoes are so important, tight fitting shoes are bad for your feet and will promote all kinds of problems, especially for children.
So a good quality good fitting shoe is strongly recommended. You are wearing them for most of the day so make it a comfortable experience and buy good quality, good fitting shoes.
7: A barefoot walk along the sea shore.
This gives your feet and toes a nice gentle massage, defoliate, and sea water bath. The sand acts as a mild abrasive to remove any dead skin, and the sea water is a natural deodorant. It lets your feet and toenails breathe and leads to healthy toenails all around.
Or even experience the delights of a
Avoid hot sand and avoid sea weed as one species can encourage the growth of a
8: Foot and toe massage, increases the blood circulation around your toes.
They are the furthest away from your heart and a little massage about once a week will go a long way to good toenail health.
Use a mildly antiseptic
or a natural Aloe Vera foot cream, and gently work it into the skin. Get your partner to help you with this one or your mum or dad.
9: Use open sandals instead of trainers or shoes when you can, get your toes out into the light and fresh air as often as you can.
Some sports shoes can build up a large amount of heat within the shoe making it easier for some form of fungal attack.
If you must wear sports shoes then make sure they are of good quality and have good internal ventilation.
Sandals come in various materials, so use only good quality, preferably a nice leather if you can.
Always think 'Quality' when it comes to purchasing foot wear, it is worth it in the end.
10: Public shower rooms, locker rooms, school changing rooms and other indoor places where feet are exposed are not to be avoided, as some would say.
However wearing non slip shower shoes or flip flops will keep the skin of your feet out of contact with the shower or locker room floor.
When washing/bathing and use a mildly anti bacterial soap of neutral ph value when washing your feet.
If you follow all of the above points you will have good healthy toenails and feet and will not be open to fungal attack.
As a safety measure, bathe your feet when you return home.
Use the correct shoesfor the correct purpose.
Sports shoes for sports, work shoes for work, shoes with a safety toecap when needed.
Trauma to your toenail can be an unpleasant experience and can, in some severe cases, lead to you loosing your toenail or open to a fungal attack.
It takes about 1 year to replace a big toenail at normal growth rate.
These above 10 points are a general guide to healthy toenails and they are so easy, in todays busy life, to overlook.
Take a little time to look after your feet. It pays off.
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