Burns on the feet can happen for many reasons. You may have forgotten to use sunscreen on your feet and got a sunburn. You also could have gone barefoot on hot pavement or sand and burnt the bottoms of your feet.
Burning the bottoms of your feet is not only painful, but it can make it difficult to wear shoes or socks. Burns are serious for those with a condition such as neuropathy that causes a loss of sensation in the feet. Using direct sources of heat such as a heating pad, electric blanket, or hot water bottle can result in burns since the person may not feel if the heat is too high.
If you suffered burns on your feet, contact an experienced podiatrist to evaluate the severity of the burns and recommend proper treatment. Burns that are left untreated can lead to more serious complications such as infection or permanent tissue damage.
Treating Burns on the Feet
If you suffer burns on your feet, seek the advice of a podiatrist. Some burns are minor while others can be more serious and lead to an infection if not treated properly. The type of treatment recommended for burns depends on the severity of the burn.
Burns can range in severity and are categorized as the following:
- First-degree burn. This type of burn is typically mild and can cause redness and swelling. It occurs on the outer layers of the skin and can peel as it heals. This is common with a sunburn. To treat a first-degree burn, you can use a cool compress and apply a moisturizer such as aloe vera or vitamin E.
- Second-degree burn. This type of burn affects the deeper layers of the skin and causes blisters. You may also have redness or swelling with a second-degree burn and feel pain or tenderness where the skin is burnt. A podiatrist may recommend covering this type of burn with a loose bandage and using a topical antibiotic to help with healing.
- Third-degree burn. This type of burn is the most serious and can cause damage to the outer and inner layers of the skin as well as the tissue underneath. A third-degree burn makes the skin look waxy or charred. It requires immediate medical attention since it can lead to an infection or permanent damage.
Preventing Burns on Your Feet
There are some basic tips to consider that can help prevent burns on your feet such as:
- Don’t go barefoot while out in the sun or while walking on hot surfaces. Always wear shoes and socks to cover and protect your feet.
- If you are planning to spend a day at the beach or in the sun, be sure to use sunscreen on your feet and pay close attention to the tops.
- If you have a condition such as diabetes or neuropathy, do not use direct heat on your feet since you may not feel when the heat is too high.
If you have burns on your feet, contact Greater Washington Podiatry for an evaluation. We can provide a free initial consultation and create a treatment plan based on your specific needs. To set up an appointment, fill out our contact form online or call our office at (301) 515-FEET.