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Foot Blisters

What are Blisters?

Blisters are a common problem with athletes wearing in new shoes. They are also a common problem for athletes, runners and walkers who participate in exceptionally long events such as marathons or long hill walks.

What Causes Blisters?

Blisters are caused by friction. The body responds to the friction by producing fluid. The fluid builds up beneath the part of the skin being rubbed, causing pressure and pain.

When blisters appear on feet, the source of the friction is usually your shoes or socks rubbing against your skin.

Other causes of blisters are:

  • Running a faster pace
  • Poor-fitting shoes and
  • Foot abnormalities, such as bunions, heel spurs and hammertoes
  • Heat and moisture will intensify friction by making your feet swell.

What is a Blood Blister?

A blood blister occurs when the friction ruptures tiny blood vessels.

How to Treat Blisters?

If the blister has not "popped," leave it alone. Most of the time, the blister will reabsorb and heal on its own.

Can Blisters be Prevented?

Yes. Once the cause of the blister is determined, the blister can be prevented. Some common ways to prevent blisters are:

  • Wear shoes that fit properly.
  • Keep feet as dry as possible.
  • Change socks regularly.
  • Wear two pairs of socks
    • If you wear two pairs of socks, the friction will occur between the two socks, instead of between the sock and skin
  • Wear a padded tape that doesn't move and stays on your feet when wet
  • Use foot powder to help keep your feet dry.
  • Wear blister-free, synthetic socks.
    • Synthetic socks wick moisture away from the skin.
  • Lubricate your feet with vaseline

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