Health & Nutrition - - SELF CARE -

the re­ward of a long run or hike is a big, fat blis­ter. Most are mi­nor, but some can be painful and even be­come in­fected. Blis­ters form as a re­sult of fric­tion, when the top lay­ers of the skin sep­a­rate from the bot­tom layer and the space fills with fluid. A com­mon cause is ill-fit­ting shoes; moist and hot skin in­creases sus­cep­ti­bil­ity. To stop a blis­ter be­fore it de­vel­ops, try to pre­vent rub­bing of the skin against the shoe or at least take ac­tion as soon as you feel a ‘hot spot’. Make sure your shoes are not too tight or loose. When buy­ing hik­ing shoes or boots, the store may have a sloped sur­face where you can test the fit. Padded in­soles or arch sup­ports may help pre­vent blis­ters caused by un­even pres­sure on your feet. Wear socks made from syn­thet­ics that wick away sweat – that is, move the mois­ture away from your skin. They should be seam­less and snug enough so they move with your feet and don’t bunch up. If your feet tend to sweat a lot, try ap­ply­ing an anti-per­spi­rant, es­pe­cially one mar­keted for ex­ces­sive sweat­ing.

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