Blisters are caused by friction, where the surface of the skin is held in one place and the tissues underneath the surface are stretched to the point of tearing. It is influenced by 3 things:
- The nature of your skin
- How your foot works, and
- The amount of friction
As the outer layer of skin separates from the inner layers, the space fills with lymph fluid.
What are the most common problems with blisters?
Blisters can be quite uncomfortable depending on their severity. Blisters can prevent you from walking properly and possibly prevent you wearing shoes. In some cases, blisters may lead to infection.
How do these problems arise?
Blisters arise due to friction. They commonly occur when socks are not worn, when wearing in new shoes or when the feet are sweaty. They also tend to occur in athletes or walkers who take part in exceptionally long events such as marathons or endurance walks.
How can they be treated?
It’s important to know that blisters can generally be prevented by taking simple precautions to reduce friction. Research shows the best strategy is wearing two pairs of socks – a thin synthetic inner sock and a thicker outer sock with areas of built-in padding to cushion the high impact or bony areas. If you often have blisters on or in between your toes, toe-socks can be the answer.
You also need to ensure your shoes fit properly and your skin temperature needs to be maintained so that the skin does not become overly sweaty and moist which increases the risk of blisters. Socks designed to ‘wick moisture away’; that is take the moisture away from the skin out through the sock to the other side of the sock, is the best way of managing this.
When should they be checked by a podiatrist?
If you are unable to manage your blisters by taking simple precautions, it may be necessary to seek professional advice from a Podiatrist.
How can Total Care Podiatry help you?
At Total Care Podiatry the Podiatrist will provide you with specific information to reduce the discomfort caused by blisters. We will also be able to determine whether your blisters occur in high-pressure areas and provide you with an accurate diagnosis and a treatment plan to address them.
This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace professional podiatric advice. Treatment will vary between individuals depending upon your diagnosis and presenting complaint. An accurate diagnosis can only be made following personal consultation with a Podiatrist.