Foot odor occurs when excess perspiration from your feet soaks the lining of your shoes and socks. Perspiration creates an optimal environment for bacteria to grow and cause a bad odor.
Sweaty, smelly feet and/or shoes are the most common signs. People who wear poorly ventilated shoes, synthetic or non-leather boots, or non-wicking socks made of polyester or nylon tend to have persistent foot odor. Bacteria are the major source of foot odor. Bacteria consume dead skin cells on the feet, which then produce foot odor, to avoid foot odour
Causes of Stinky Feet
The problem isn’t your feet, it’s what your feet are wearing. Smelly feet are primarily caused from of a lack of ventilation for your feet. Each foot has more than 250,000 sweat glands, producing more than a pint of sweat in one day. That’s a lot of moisture to keep pressed against your feet.
People get smelly feet when the perspiration has nowhere to evaporate but it is not the sweat that causes the foot odor. A bacterium that lives on the skin eats the feet’s sweat, producing isovaleric acid, causing the odor. Athlete’s Foot, which is a skin infection caused by a fungus, can also cause smelly feet. Other factors that can cause smelly feet include certain medications, some diseases, poor hygiene, harsh environments, wearing poor-quality shoes and over-wearing shoes.
How to Prevent Smelly Feet
You can prevent smelly feet by reducing the amount of sweat captured in your 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. Some arch support insoles maybe have anti-bacterial or other odor-eating top covers that can help prevent smelly feet.
Wash your body every day, and if you have a history of foot odor, clean your feet with an anti-bacterial soap. Wear shoes for the occasion and place. 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. Don’t be embarrassed by your feet be sure to keep your feet dry, clean and cool to prevent smelly feet.
Treatment for Stinky Feet
There are different remedies for treating stinky feet, and if none of the following work for you, you should consult a doctor. Wash your feet with antifungal foot soap and wash your body every day to reduce bacteria and odor. You can also use antibacterial foot powder on your feet, Athlete’s Foot cream or spray antifungal shoe spray inside your shoes.
An easy and clean way to keep your shoes dry and odor-free is to put shoe inserts inside your shoes after you wear them. Some insoles have anti-odor or anti-microbial top covers, and those can help eliminate smelly feet. A great treatment for stinky feet that many people turn to are perspiration absorbent footed liners for men and women.