Trench foot is a condition that develops after prolonged exposure of the feet to wet, cold and unsanitary conditions and cause infection on the feet. It also result to swelling and the feet becoming red or pale, and nerves and muscles can become infected.
Causes of trench foot
- Long periods of standing, and cause reduced flow of blood to the lower extremities.
- Wearing improper footwear or protection for the foot
- Exposure to wetness and the wet extremities loses heat quickly than dry ones.
- Prolonged exposure to cold temperatures and prevent adequate supply of oxygen and nutrient for the feet.
- Unhealthy diet and poor sleeping habits
- Lastly, poor hygiene foot hygiene
- At first, foot pain
- Severe feet swelling
- Tingly or itchy feet
- Cold blotchy skin
- Redness and warmth
- Numbness, heaviness or a prickly sensations in the feet
- Dry skin
- Flaking of skin
- Blisters beneath the foot
- Severe pain when exposed to heat
- In addition, shrinking and formation of wrinkles in the foot
- Change of skin color to grey or white
- Lastly, cold feet
- Wash the feet regularly and keep it dry all the time. Change socks every day. If there are cuts or abrasions, apply antibacterial cream or clean it with an alcohol-based sanitizer to prevent contamination of bacteria and result to infection.
- Warm up the feet gradually. Heat will dilate or open up the blood vessel and increase flow of blood in the affected feet and prevent further irritation. Apply warm packs on the affected area for at least 5-10 minutes. Wrap the warm packs in a towel before placing to the area to prevent further irritations and delay the healing.
- Take off the socks when sleeping or resting. Avoid wearing tight socks to prevent reduced flow of blood and worsen the condition. Keep the feet warm by covering them with wool blanket. When lying in bed, add more blankets to the bottom of the bed to keep the feet warm. Avoid crossing the ankles to prevent slowing down of circulation to the feet.
- Prescribed over-the-counter pain medications to lessen the swelling and the pain.
- If blisters developed with the trench foot, apply prescribed antibiotic cream or sanitizing lotion to lessen development of infections and worsen the condition.
- Take a tetanus vaccination.
- Avoid prolonged standing in cold or cool water. Trench foot can develop within 12 hours.
- Avoid prolonged standing in warm and unsanitary water to prevent development of another type of immersion foot.
- Wear well fitting waterproof shoes.
- Apply Vaseline or talcum powder on the feet to absorb moisture from the feet especially from sweat.