Most people are born with healthy feet but three out of four seniors develop foot problems as they age!
The Importance of Foot Care as You Age
One in three people over the age of 65 has foot pain, stiffness, or aching feet. Many people believe that foot pain is a normal consequence of growing older but that is far from the truth.
As they are stuck at the end of the body and hidden away in slippers, we can all too easily forget how important it is for older people to have healthy feet.
Elderly foot care is an important part of health for seniors. Taking care of an elderly person's feet and checking for problems brings many benefits:
- Staying Active. Foot problems quickly reduce mobility. Being able to walk easily is extremely important, since walking is one of the best ways to exercise and keep fit. If it's painful to walk then an elderly person will walk less. This reduces independence, limits exercise and risks the development of deep-vein thrombosis (blood clots).
- Balance. Healthy feet improve balance in the elderly, thereby reducing the
risk of falls.
Falls have become the leading cause of injury deaths among Americans age 65 and older, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Painful foot conditions such as osteoarthritis, corns, bunions, hammertoes, and diabetic complications can make it difficult for seniors to maintain balance and coordination when walking or standing. Exercises to enhance lower body strength can reduce this risk. But for seniors with painful foot and ankle conditions, exercise can be difficult. Minimizing or eliminating foot pain in seniors improves their balance, coordination and stability when walking or standing.
- Early Warning Signs. Feet can actually help alert you to health problems at an early stage. Problems such as diabetes, arthritis, poor blood circulation and nerve damage can all have a noticeable effect on the feet or toenails.