Smelly feet are a problem for hundreds of thousands of Americans, and while odorous feet may not actually be a sign of a significant foot issue, the environment in which smelly feet develop could put you at risk for other foot problems, like infections or lesions. So not only can combating smelly feet help save you some personal embarrassment, it could actually help reduce your risk of other problematic foot conditions. In today’s blog, we take a closer look at how a nanoparticle-infused socks and other methods can help you prevent stinky feet.
A recent study out of Thailand found that socks coated in zinc oxide nanoparticles could help to prevent both foot odor and a bacteria that can contribute to smelly feet. To put the socks to the test, 148 cadets from the Royal Thai Airforce were given socks to wear during training. This is a solid sample group, as they are often on their feet for hours, and stinky feet and bacterial infections are common complaints in the RTA. In fact, more than a third of cadets report foot lesions, and the lesions can develop in moist environments that contribute to foot odor.
Cadets wearing the socks reported much fewer foul odors coming from their feet compared to other soldiers, and those soldiers wearing normal socks that reported foul odors were found to be much more likely to have developed the bacterial condition keratolysis, which contributes to smelly feet.
“Our results prove the efficacy of ZnO-NP-coated socks in preventing bromodosis and inhibiting the development of pitted keratolysis,” said Dr. Punyawee Ongsri, lead author of the study. “These socks could provide a new primary prevention option for both military personnel and those susceptible to these embarrassing and unpleasant conditions. We are continuing our research with other textiles and hope to treat and prevent the growth of bacterial and fungal infections.”
If you can’t get your hands on zinc-coated socks, stick to some other common techniques to help prevent the onset of foot odor, which include:
Avoiding overly tight shoes
Going barefoot when safe to allow your feet to breathe
Changing socks if they get damp or wet
Topical creams and powders
Drying your shoes appropriately if they become wet or damp before wearing them again
Talking to your foot specialist
For more tips on how to prevent or treat smelly feet, or if you have concerns about your foot odor, reach out to Dr. Silverman and the team at Silverman Ankle & Foot today.