Why Do My Feet Smell?

At this time of year, it’s not unusual to hear that old children’s rhyme, “Trick or treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat.” At Benenati Foot & Ankle Care Centers, however, we know that foot odor is a year-round problem for some people. With approximately 3,000 sweat glands per square inch producing about ½ pint of perspiration daily, your feet are prime targets for body odor issues. Below are the most common reasons for foul-smelling feet and what to do about them.

Medical Reasons

For some patients, there is actually a medical condition responsible for foot odor issues. Hyperhidrosis is a disorder that is passed on genetically and causes excessive sweating of the feet. It is more prevalent in men than women. Other medical reasons for stinky feet include hormonal changes, stress and the effects of certain medications. It’s important to know what’s causing foot odor and if there is a need for treatment. For this reason, if this is an ongoing problem, you should make an appointment at our Macomb (586) 416-3668, St. Clair Shores (586) 779-6140 or Warren (586) 756-3338 office so our podiatrists Dr. Anthony Benenati, Dr. Neil Shaw and Dr. Adam Thompson can examine your feet and make the proper diagnosis.

Hygiene Routine

In many instances, simple changes in your hygiene routine can put an end to this problem. Start by washing your feet every day with soap and water. Other ways to decrease foot odor include:

  • Changing your socks whenever you notice they feel damp
  • Not wearing the same pair of shoes two days in a row
  • Choosing socks that are absorbent and footwear that is made of breathable materials that allow for air circulation
  • Using an anti-fungal or other foot powder each day before putting your socks on

Fungal Infection

Foot odor can also be a sign of a fungal infection. If this is the case, the podiatrist will be able to prescribe an oral or topical medication to get rid of the infection. You can help prevent fungal infections by keeping your feet covered in public places and not borrowing anyone else’s shoes, socks, or nail implements.

Don’t be embarrassed to contact us about foot odor or any other podiatric symptoms you’re concerned about.

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