For people suffering from the embarrassment of smelling feet, John Foxx, skin information researcher has an explanation. Foxx said the unpleasant and embarrassing foot odor is due to lack of ventilation for the feet, sweat mixed with bacteria from the skin, hyperhidrosis; excessive sweat glands, stress, medication, alcohol and drugs, hormone changes, such as can be brought on by puberty or menopause as well as poor hygiene.
Foxx also noted that while most people have over 250,000 sweat glands in their feet that produce a pint of moisture every day, others have more than the average number of sweat glands and sweat excessively. Sweat by itself is odorless and comprises of salt and water, but when it comes into contact with bacteria it begins to smell badly.
The scientist explains that, “The smell is actually caused by bacteria on our skin that eats the sweat and excretes waste that has a strong odor. It is perfectly normal to have bacteria on your skin, but sweat attracts bacteria and gives them a whole lot to feed on. “Shoes and socks are the perfect environment for sweat and bacteria to mingle, which is why it is critical to maintain proper hygiene. You may not at first notice the odor, which may only be in your shoes. Eventually, however, the odor will become hard for you and everyone else to ignore,” he said.
Lorraine Jones, a chiropodist, advised that anyone can prevent as well as remedy smelly feet by reducing the amount of sweat captured in their shoes. “Wear well-made shoes with breathable features, such as leather uppers or athletic shoes with mesh uppers. The socks you wear are also important – wear socks made with copper, wool, cool max or other moisture-wicking fibers to ensure ventilation. Wash your body every day, and if you have a history of foot odor, clean your feet with an anti-bacterial soap. Excessive amounts of sweat will increase your chances for getting smelly feet; so do not wear thick socks, boots and pants if you know it will be hot outside. Do not wear the same shoes every day. Buy a variety of high-quality shoes so you can give each pair of shoes about 24 hours before you wear them again. Your feet sure would not embarrass you when you keep your feet dry, clean and cool to prevent smelly feet,” Jones said.
He added that, “There are a variety of home remedies to help rid yourself of your odorous feet.” Jones advised that people with this challenge can “soak their feet in solutions such as tea; it contains tannic acid that dries the skin, salt water; do not rinse your feet when you remove them just dry them thoroughly and go about your day.’’
On a final note, Jones advised that if your foot odor is really bad and these solutions don’t help much, you should consider seeing a podiatrist. A podiatrist may be able to recommend a specific product for your case like foot powders, creams, or ointments if your case is severe. To this end, this treatment might not seem the abrupt end of smelling feet but indeed it is the start of freshened feet.