As odd as it may seem, your feet may be the window to your overall body health. Here are some things to look for regarding your feet that will give you clues that there may be other important body issues to look into.
No hair on your feet or toes
If your feet or toes are lacking hair, it can be a sign of having poor circulation because of vascular disease. If you notice that your feet and toes do not have any hair on them, you will want to consult your doctor to find out ways to improve your circulation thereby reducing your risk of acquiring vascular disease.
A wound that won’t heal on your foot
Wounds on your feet that just won’t heal could be an indication of diabetes. Over time, elevated blood glucose levels can lead to serious nerve damage in your feet and because of this damage you may not feel when you have a sore or a wound on your foot. If your wound continues to go unhealed there could be major problems, including amputation. If you notice a wound that won’t heal on your feet be sure to contact your doctor to discuss your wound. If you are currently living with or being treated for diabetes, be sure to check your feet often and mark any changes.
While most women are known for their “cold feet” there may be something even more serious going on if you constantly have cold feet. For women, having cold feet is a sign of an under functioning thyroid, the gland that regulates temperature and metabolism. Poor circulation is another explanation of cold feet in both women and men. If you experience cold feet that simply don’t warm up with warm socks or slippers, talk it over with your doctor to have your thyroid checked and explore your options, which may include thyroid medications.
Thick, yellow toenails
Toenails are not supposed to be thick and/or yellow. Thick, yellow nails are most often an indication of a fungal infection living beneath your toenails. People that have other medical conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes and other immune deficiencies are more likely to get a fungal infection than those that do not have these conditions. To treat thick, yellow toenails, you will need to consult a podiatrist. While there are plenty of over-the-counter treatments for thick, yellow toenails, by the time your nails are already discolored and thick it is too late for any over-the-counter creams or medicines to work. You must discuss your options with a professional.
An enlarged big toe
Gout is the condition when the big toe suddenly swells up to an uncomfortable size. Gout is actually a form of arthritis due to the buildup of uric acid. This condition typically shows up in your big toe because it affects the part of your body with the lowest temperature, which is often the big toe. It can also occur in your knees, elbows, Achilles tendon and the instep of your foot. If you discover that your big toe has swollen to an abnormally large size, contact a foot care specialist, who with diet recommendations and medication, can help to cure this condition.