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Your Embarrassing Foot Odor Questions Answered

Smelly Feet QuestionsWe all love Kimmy Gibbler (“Fuller House,” anyone?)

But let’s face it. None of us want her feet.

What are the factors that lead to stinky feet? Does having stinky feet mean you might have other health problems? We’ve compiled a list of all your embarrassing foot odor questions to put your mind–and your feet–at ease!

1. What causes foot odor?

To put it simply, foot odor is caused by the combination of sweat and bacteria. Since your feet have an incredibly high number of sweat glands (250,000 to be exact!) the area is especially ripe for sweat–which is a breeding ground for bacteria that cause odor.

2. How can I get rid of smelly feet?

The best way to stop smelly feet is to do something about the source of the problem, aka finding a way to keep your feet clean dry so bacteria can’t reproduce as easily. Change your socks frequently, especially in the winter. Wash your feet regularly with soap, and allow your feet to dry completely before donning socks and shoes. Swab between your toes with a cotton swab to make sure you’re getting rid of all moisture.

Foot odor powder is another effective–and fast-acting way to get rid of foot odor and the itching that can accompany it.

3. Do stinky feet mean I might have another health problem?

The good news is that stinky feet is usually just an indication you need to change your socks more often or dry your feet better after a shower. However, in some cases it can be a sign of hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating. Foot odor accompanied by flaky skin and a lot of itching can also be a sign of a fungal infection, so make sure to visit your doctor if your stinky feet don’t respond to some simple life changes.

4. How do I clean stinky shoe inserts?

If you use slip-in orthotics every day, chances are they will develop a bit of an odor over time, even if you don’t have exceptionally stinky feet. Luckily, most inserts can be washed by hand with warm water and mild soap or detergent. If you use Heel Seats, you can simply toss them into the washing machine.

4. What’s the best way to de-stink smelly shoes?

How to get rid of stinky boots

The best way to keep your shoes from perpetuating a problem with stinky feet is to give them some time to air out between uses. Let your shoes breathe for 24 hours between wearings so that all moisture has a chance to evaporate. Wearing cotton instead of wool socks is a great way to help keep moisture–and stink–away from your shoes. Add extra freshness by sprinkling a light dusting of foot powder inside your shoes while they breathe.

5. Are stinky feet contagious?

In general, smelly feet aren’t catching (but that doesn’t mean you want to wave them around!). However, athlete’s foot–an underlying fungal infection that can make your feet stink–is contagious. So don’t share if you expect you might have a fungal infection.

6. Can I self-diagnose stinky feet?

Yes! If you catch a whiff of something unpleasant when you remove your shoes and socks, you have stinky feet. The good news is, you’re not alone. And typically, stinky feet are easy to cure with a little extra attention to things like changing socks and shoes, and washing feet more regularly with soap.

7. How can I prevent smelly feet?

There are several little things you can do to prevent smelly feet. First and foremost, wash your feet with soap regularly! Next, make sure you’re giving your feet ample time to dry after the bath or shower–especially between the toes (you can use cotton swabs to dry between the toes if you’d like to speed this process). Change your socks regularly (never wear the same pair twice), and allow your shoes at least 24 hours between wearings. The name of the game is reducing sweat and bacteria!

8. What kind of shoes are best for stinky feet?

Wash feet regularly to reduce odor

Breathable canvas or leather shoes are great for stinky feet–especially when they’re rotated often and allowed to breathe for 24 hours between wearings. Try to steer clear of rubber, which holds in moisture and can create a hotbed of bacteria. It’s also a good idea to spend time barefoot when possible.

9. Can I use underarm deodorant for smelly feet?

You sure can! A stick of your favorite deodorant can be applied directly to the bottoms of your feet. Just make sure you allow it to dry before putting on shoes or socks. This is a great way to help with foot odor.

10. Do copper infused socks help with smelly feet?

Copper has been shown to have antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. So wearing copper-infused socks can, in many cases, reduce the amount of bacteria–and consequently stink–that your feet produce. There’s some debate to just how much the socks reduce foot odor, but many people have reported good results!

And there you have it. Say goodbye to Gibler style, and hello to fresh feet from now on!

2016 Holiday Gift Guide: Ideas for Practical Gifts

Practical Gift GuideWhen you hear the words “practical gifts,” do you imagine the disappointment of finding new underwear under the Christmas tree?

It’s time to reimagine practical gifts. A giant teddy bear wearing a snowflake sweater might be adorable, but chances are it’ll eventually find a home in the back of a closet. But is there really such a thing as fun, practical gifts that your friends and family will love–and actually use?

Challenge accepted.

The secret to a good practical gift and a dud lies in knowing your audience. We’ve identified the top targets on your Santa list this year–and the gifts they’ll love and use long after the tinsel comes off the tree!

1. Practical Gifts for the Lego Maniac or Dolly Darling

Does your budding engineer love Legos? Have a child who gets starry-eyed at the thought of visiting the toy star (who doesn’t?!) Give them a subscription to Pley.

Pley is basically Netflix for toys. Check out lego sets and a multitude of other toys, that get mailed straight to your house. When your child has had their fill of playing, simply pop it back in the mail and check out another toy. See? Who said practical wasn’t fun!

2. Practical Gifts for the Fitness Freak

If someone on your list is all about the gym, hitting the trails, or training for his or her next marathon, chances are they ice their feet (after all, it’s one of the best ways to reduce inflammation!).

Save them from messy, drippy plastic bags and awkward ice packs with HTP’s Ice Slippers. Not only do they mold to the foot–they’re reusable, have straps to keep them in place, and they’ll never drip!

3. Practical Gifts for the College Student

If you have a college student on your Santa list this year, you know that transportation is almost always a challenge–whether that’s getting to an internship interview, making it home from a party safely, or running an out-of-the-way errand. Give your co-ed an Uber or Lyft gift card, for those transportation emergencies this year.

4. Practical Gifts for the Bibliophile

Know someone who can’t get enough of a good book? Give them a subscription to the Book of the Month Club! With four best-selling books to choose from every month and a panel of judges to give their reviews of the books up for grabs, your book-lover is sure to find a compelling read every month–without a trip to the bookstore!

5. Practical Gifts for The Busy Mom

It’s never been easier for busy moms to snap a beautiful photo and capture those special moments. However, printing and enjoying those photos is another matter! A Chatbooks subscription is a fantastic way to help the busy mom in your life actually use and enjoy the photos she takes on her smartphone. Chatbooks automatically creates a high quality book of up to 60 photos from Instagram, Facebook, or your smartphone–at only $8 with free shipping.

Practical Gifts for Mom

6. Practical Gifts for Your Favorite Coworker

Monday mornings and coffee go hand in hand. Make your favorite coworker’s Mondays more exciting this year with the practical gift of a variety pack of coffee pods for the office Keurig. Inexpensive, thoughtful, and practical–not to mention an extra dose of joy on Monday mornings!

7. Practical Gifts for Your Mother in Law

How many times have you looked at a drawer full of thank you cards–when what your really need is a birthday card? This practical gift is perfect for a doting mother-in-law: a variety pack of assorted notecards for any occasion to eliminate all those little trips to the store!

8. Practical Gifts for the Dedicated Husband

What can make a super-hero even better at his job? A practical AAA subscription. For any time a there’s a lockout, an accident, or or a blown tire, getting help just got easier. And traveling just got a lot safer and smoother. For a family man, a AAA subscription is a fantastic, practical gift he might not get for himself–but will be very happy to have when the need arises!

Practical Gifts for Husband

9. Practical Gifts for The Fishing Fanatic

Know someone who can’t get enough of hooks and sinkers? This handy sweatshirt will keep him or her warm on cool mornings on the lake–not to mention it also has the handy feature of a zipper attachment that can be used to cut fishing line! No more digging for the pliers–just reach for the drawstring of this sweatshirt!

10. Practical Gifts for the Chef

Get your favorite chef the practical but thrilling gift of the latest and greatest tool that makes cooking faster and easier: the Instant Pot. It’s a slow cooker, pressure cooker, rice cooker, and saute pan all in one. It uses less energy than traditional slow cookers and pressure cookers, and it speeds cooking by up to 2x to 6x (to give you an idea, this little gem can turned tried beans into ready-to-eat beans in 15 minutes!).

11. Practical Gifts for Your Father in Law

Has your father in law heard of the Dollar Shave Club that’s all the rage with millennials? It’s time to introduce him! With free shipping and access to the razors he loves at a fraction of the price, the Dollar Shave club is a practical gift for him that keeps on giving and eliminates trips to the grocery store or shaving with dull blades!

12. Practical Gifts for the Teenager

If there’s one thing we know about most teenagers today, it’s that they love their electronic devices! However, those devices have a way of going dead at inopportune times. Make your teenager’s day with a portable charger that goes where they go, and nixes the need to stay plugged into a wall outlet. They’ll love it–and you’ll love knowing that they can contact you with a working device if needed!

13. Practical Gifts for the Three-Nager

Have a three-year-old going on thirteen? Chances are, he or she is almost as crazy about the idea of all things electronic as his or her teenage counterpart! Make your child feel like a big kid–and gain practical reading and math skills in the process– with a LeapFrog tablet. It looks like an iPad but doesn’t connect to the web. But it features plenty of fun games and learning opportunities to keep your child engaged and busy.

Practical Gifts for Toddler

Feeling inspired yet?

Enjoy giving these practical gifts that your friends and family will use all year long!

4 Steps to Getting What You Really Want This Holiday

Get Gifts You Want: Holiday GuideThe holidays are just around the corner which means that it’s gift giving season for many people around the world.

If you’re sick of getting cheesy neckties and impersonal gift cards, we’re here to help!

Buying the wrong gift is bad for for everyone – you have to graciously accept something you don’t want, and your gift giver has just wasted money on something you won’t really use.

This step-by-step guides shows you the adult version of “writing a letter to Santa” so that at the end of the season, your friends and family know that they’ve gotten you something you really love.

Step 1: Visit www.amazon.com and Sign In

The first step towards getting the gifts you really want is to visit www.amazon.com and sign into your account. You will find the sign in button in the top right corner of the page.

Amazon Sign In

If you do not already have an Amazon account, fear not! This button will lead you directly to a page where you can sign up.

Step 2: Search for the Gift You Really Want

At the top of your page you will see a search bar. Type “Heel Seats”, and it will show you a list of items that match what you searched. Click on the item you want to go to the product page where you can select sizing and other options.

Search Amazon for Heel Seats

Step 3: Add It To Your Wish List or Create a New One

Once you have found the product you want, select the size and add it to your wish list. If you haven’t created wish lists in the past, simply click on the double arrows next to “Add to List”, and click “Create a List”.

Add Gifts to Wish List

When you create your list, don’t forget to make it public so that you can share it with your friends and family.

Make Wish List Public

Step 4: Complete Your List and Share It with Facebook or Email

Once you’ve added Heel Seats to your list, you can access it by clicking “View Your List”, or continue shopping. If you have more gift ideas that you would like people to know about, you can repeat this process until your list is full of goodies.

Is your head spinning yet? Once you get the hang of it, it’s really quite easy!

When your list is complete, click “View Your List”.

Share your gift list

You will be taken to your wish list full of all of the items you want, where you can share on social media or send it in an email. Share it with your Facebook friends, message it to your siblings, or email it to your spouse so that everyone knows!

Share your list on Facebook

With gift-giving holidays it can feel like you give and give, and never receive anything you truly want. Filling an Amazon list with everything you desire and sharing it with your friends and family helps them find the perfect present for you instead of shooting in the dark – it’s a win-win!

21 Surprising Plantar Fasciitis Statistics

21 Surprising Plantar Fasciitis StatisticsIf you or a loved one suffer from plantar fasciitis, you’ve probably heard an earful of surefire remedies, stories about a cousin who was cured after surgery, and a multitude of tips and tricks for relieving pain.

But what do the numbers say when it comes to plantar fasciitis?

We’ve gathered the most compelling–and often surprising–facts about plantar fasciitis from top medical journals and publications. Because when it comes to making decisions about the health of your feet, it’s critical to have the facts on your side!

Top Plantar Fasciitis Statistics

  1. Right around 10% of people will suffer from plantar fasciitis in their lifetime.
    Takeaway: Plantar fasciitis is pretty darn common! Knowing the facts about this condition can help nip symptoms in the bud.One in Ten People Have Plantar Fasciitis
  2. A whopping 89% of plantar fasciitis sufferers experience plantar fascia softening1.
    Takeaway: Catching plantar fasciitis early is one of the best ways to catch chronic pain at the pass. This makes ultrasound elastography–which can detect plantar fascia softening–an effective diagnostic tool, even in early stages of PF!
  3. In one study, the combination of foot orthosis and an adjustable dorsiflexion night splint resulted in a 47% decrease in pain2.
    Takeaway: If just one solution for your plantar fasciitis pain isn’t working, try combining treatments with orthotics and a night splint.
  4. An incredible 85.72% of patients see a decrease in pain with Botulinum type A, or BTX treatments3.
    Takeaway: If your symptoms from plantar fasciitis are resistant to home remedies, BTX might be a terrific option.
  5. In one study of 250 participants, orthoses (orthotic inserts) improved pain by 37% after a 12-week period4.
    Takeaway: Don’t give up on your orthotic inserts after just a few days! Give it some time, as the best results come from trials of 12 weeks or longer.Orthotics can take 3 weeks to work
  6. A breakthrough study found that after three months, custom orthoses only improved pain 11% as compared to placebo orthotics5.
    Takeaway: Custom orthotics can be incredibly expensive–and might not be worth the extra money!
  7. Plantar fasciitis accounts for between 11-15%6 of all adult foot symptoms requiring the care of a medical professional.
    Takeaway: Most cases of plantar fasciitis can be treated effectively with home remedies–however, the remaining cases can be quite stubborn, necessitating medical intervention.
  8. Plantar fasciitis has been reported to account for about 10%6 of injuries that occur in connection with running.
    Takeaway: Running is a major culprit for plantar fasciitis injuries. Wearing proper footwear, supporting your feet with orthotics, and resting as needed is key.
  9. Amazingly, 90% of plantar fasciitis cases can be healed with conservative, in-home treatments.
    Takeaway: Medical interventions can be costly, risky, and painful. Before jumping to medical intervention, give conservative home remedies a chance.
  10. Heel Seats with Fascia Bar technology are 2x as effective as Dr. Scholls.
    Takeaway: Not all orthotics are created equal! Fascia Bar technology is the difference between orthotic shoe inserts that specifically target and heal plantar fasciitis, and inserts that simply provide cushioning.
  11. The annual cost of treatments for plantar fasciitis is estimated to be between $192 and $376 million dollars7.
    Takeaway: Medical treatments can get very expensive, very quickly–especially when used as a first resort. Most cases of plantar fasciitis can be resolved at home with conservative, consistent treatment.The Cost of Plantar Fasciitis Treatment
  12. Obesity is a factor in 70% of plantar fasciitis cases8.
    Takeaway: In some cases, gaining weight quickly is a given (pregnancy being the most notable case!) However, in other situations it’s important, if at all possible, to maintain a healthy weight to keep healthy feet.
  13. In one study, heel pain was either eliminated or much improved at eight weeks in 52% of patients6 who were treated with an exercise program to stretch the plantar fascia.
    Takeaway: Stretching to relieve symptoms of plantar fasciitis doesn’t work immediately–but it does work in the long-term. Incorporate stretching into your daily routine for best results
  14. Heel Spurs are found in about 50% of plantar fasciitis cases9.
    Takeaway: Contrary to common belief, heel spurs are caused by plantar fasciitis–not the other way around! Heel spurs develop in response to trauma of the plantar fascia, which can ultimately cause a great deal of pain when walking. Treating plantar fasciitis early is the key to avoiding heel spurs.
  15. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics have found that plantar fasciitis accounts for an average of one million patient visits per year.
    Takeaway: The pain from plantar fasciitis drives a huge number of people to the doctor’s office annually. That’s no small matter! For many of these cases, symptoms could be resolved with at-home treatments like stretching, icing, and orthotic inserts.
  16. Favorable outcomes were reported in more than 75%6 of patients who underwent surgery in one study.
    Takeaway: While surgery should be used as a last resort because of its expense, risks, and the down time involved, it’s a very effective last resort if needed!Plantar Fasciitis Surgery Statistics
  17. In one study, 14% of patients noticed an improvement in their plantar fasciitis symptoms simply by wearing more supportive footwear10
    Takeaway: Footwear is one of the most important aspects of supporting your heel and arch! Good footwear means better impact absorption, better cushioning, and less heel movement.
  18. Custom orthotics cost between $200-$800 per pair–as compared to the cost of Heel Seats at $24.95 per pair.
    Takeaway: Many physicians agree that custom orthotics are overprescribed and very expensive. Heel Seats are much less expensive and have been shown to be effective in 90% of users.
  19. The cost of plantar fasciitis surgery can reach $10,000 or more.
    Takeaway: Not only is surgery incredibly expensive, it also involves a lot of physical therapy and down time–and should be a last resort.
  20. In one study, researchers found that 27% of cases of plantar fasciitis had been misdiagnosed.
    Takeaway: If your pain isn’t going away, or if insoles and stretching make it worse, you might not have plantar fasciitis. Ligament tears and plantar fibromas are two of the leading conditions that masquerade as plantar fasciitis.
  21. Several studies have shown that use of night splints results in improvement for 80% of patients11. Additional studies find that night splints are especially helpful for individuals whose symptoms have been present for more than 12 months.
    Takeaway: Night splints are a terrific option for speeding healing, especially if you aren’t seeing results as quickly as you hoped. Night splints can particularly help with morning pain, one of the hallmarks of plantar fasciitis.

There’s a lot to learn about plantar fasciitis–but the good news is these numbers and statistics paint a hopeful picture. The overwhelming majority of plantar fasciitis cases can be treated effectively–and without costly and painful medical intervention.

The more you know, the more effectively and confidently you can approach your treatment and pain management.

References
  1. Lee, S., Park, H. J., Kwag, H. J., Hong, H., Park, H., Lee, Y., . . . Lee, Y. (2014, September). Ultrasound elastography in the early diagnosis of plantar fasciitis. Clinical Imaging, 38(5), 715-718. doi:10.1016/j.clinimag.2012.12.004
  2. Lee, W. C., Wong, W. Y., Kung, E., & Leung, A. K. (2012). Effectiveness of adjustable dorsiflexion night splint in combination with accommodative foot orthosis on plantar fasciitis. The Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, 49(10), 1557. doi:10.1682/jrrd.2011.09.0181
  3. Diaz-Llopis, I. V., Rodriguez-Ruiz, C. M., Mulet-Perry, S., Mondejar-Gomez, F. J., Climent-Barbera, J. M., & Cholbi-Llobel, F. (2011). Randomized controlled study of the efficacy of the injection of botulinum toxin type A versus corticosteroids in chronic plantar fasciitis: Results at one and six months. Clinical Rehabilitation, 26(7), 594-606. doi:10.1177/0269215511426159
  4. Lee, S. Y., Mckeon, P., & Hertel, J. (2009). Does the use of orthoses improve self-reported pain and function measures in patients with plantar fasciitis? A meta-analysis. Physical Therapy in Sport, 10(1), 12-18. doi:10.1016/j.ptsp.2008.09.002
  5. Hawke, F., Burns, J., Radford, J. A., & Toit, V. D. (2008). Custom-made foot orthoses for the treatment of foot pain. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Reviews. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd006801.pub2
  6. Buchbinder, R. (2004). Plantar Fasciitis. New England Journal of Medicine, 350(21), 2159-2166. doi:10.1056/nejmcp032745
  7. Young, C. (2012). Plantar Fasciitis. Annals of Internal Medicine,156(1_Part_1). doi:10.7326/0003-4819-156-1-201201030-01001
  8. Rosenbaum, A. J., Dipreta, J. A., & Misener, D. (2014). Plantar Heel Pain. Medical Clinics of North America, 98(2), 339-352. doi:10.1016/j.mcna.2013.10.009
  9. Tu, P, & Bytomski. (2011). Diagnosis of Heel Pain. Duke University, Durham, North Carolina Am Fam Physician, 84(8), 909-916.
  10. Wolgin, M., Cook, C., Graham, C., & Mauldin, D. (1994). Conservative Treatment of Plantar Heel Pain: Long-Term Follow-Up. Foot & Ankle International, 15(3), 97-102. doi:10.1177/107110079401500303
  11. Young, C., Rutherford, D., & Niedfeldt, M. (2001). Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis. Am Fam Physician. 63(3):467-475.

The Emotional Toll of Plantar Fasciitis

Emotional toll of plantar fasciitis and chronic painPlantar fasciitis is a physical condition–but it can also be a deeply emotional experience. Dealing with chronic pain and experiencing discouragement in your efforts to find a solution can be exhausting, frustrating, and infuriating.

Studies find that people who suffer from chronic pain are three times more likely to suffer from a mood disorder as well.

And it’s not just the toll of navigating chronic pain that links it with mood disorders like depression. Dr. Michael Moskowitz, board member of the American Pain Association, says, “If you look at the nine places in the brain where pain occurs, six of them are where we experience mood disorders like depression and anxiety.”

In other words, physical pain and emotional pain are intertwined–literally.

Whether you’re suffering from a combination of chronic pain and depression or anxiety, or are battling higher levels of frustration, hopelessness, and anger, you are not alone. There is help and hope:

Find Your People

Reaching out and getting involved with a group of individuals who experience the same type of chronic pain you do can be immensely helpful. There are online support groups on Facebook and across the web, or if you prefer face-to-face interaction you can check out meetup.com for local groups, or talk to your local hospital for suggestions and leads. Not only will talking with people in a similar situation help you feel less lonely–it’ll also serve as a great source of new ideas to try, inspiration, friendships, and laughter.

Try Talk Therapy or EMDR

Therapy helps depression from chronic pain

Talk therapy can be a terrific way to work through the emotional angle of dealing with chronic pain. It’s all too easy for sufferers of chronic pain to isolate themselves or withdraw from friends and family, fearing “compassion overload” for an ongoing condition. Spending time talking with a trained, objective professional can be a great way to work through not only the emotional trauma of chronic pain, but also to help you navigate relationships and relate to friends and family in affirming, helpful ways. Another branch of counseling known as EMDR has also been shown to be particularly effective for targeting the emotional component of chronic pain and trauma. You can read more about it here. Both talk therapy and EMDR are generally covered by insurance and can provide a tremendous outlet and relief!

Learn About New Developments

It can be hard to try one more new thing–especially when you feel like you’ve tried it all. It can also be hard to get your hopes up, only to feel even more disappointed when a new therapy or treatment doesn’t pan out the way you’d hoped. However, with new technology, you might find that you’re pleasantly surprised by some of the options available–especially when it comes to noninvasive, inexpensive treatment options for plantar fasciitis. Keep your ear to the ground, and pay close attention to volume and quality of reviews before making an emotional (or financial) investment.

Find a Furry Friend

Pets provide comfort to chronic pain sufferers

You don’t have to be an animal fanatic to gain the benefits of spending time with our furry friends to help mitigate the emotional toll of chronic pain from conditions like plantar fasciitis. Studies show that spending time with animals reduces levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), as well as levels of anxiety, depression, and pain. It’s not 100 percent clear exactly why spending time with animals helps so much–maybe it’s their lack of judgment, steady support, or joy at simply being in your presence. If you don’t have a pet, there are many opportunities to volunteer at your local shelter, helping socialize cats, dogs, and other animals.

Write About Your Experiences

Journaling can be a powerful tool in healing when it comes to chronic pain and its emotional toll. The act of expressing yourself and naming your fears, frustrations, and discouragements can help you quantify them, put them in perspective, and explore unexpected feelings. Keeping a journal consistently can also help you more effectively identify and track treatments that work, patterns in your pain and triggers, and strategies for dealing with pain.

The connection between chronic pain and emotional distress is real. And caring for your mental health as you navigate the physical pain you experience from conditions like plantar fasciitis is an important part of healing.

One step at a time, one day at a time, you can find support and relief for the physical and mental distress you’re experiencing.

Home Remedies HTP Treatments