Itchy feet are a common condition that affects both men and women. There are several reasons why one gets itchy feet. Some of the most common causes include extremely dry skin, super moist feet, allergic reactions, irritants and varied infections. Some of the most ubiquitous infections include psoriasis, athlete’s foot, hand, foot and mouth disease as well as peripheral neuropathy.
These aspects are exacerbated by the fact that there are more than half a million glands located on both feet, all of which are consistently sweating. This warm and moist location creates a perfect environment for fungi and bacteria to thrive, and predisposes you to getting itchy feet. As such, one of the most basic things to do in managing itchy feet is to wash feet properly.
Itchy feet are often an indication of an underlying condition, and manifest in different symptoms. These include redness of the affected part, inflammation, dry cracked skin and flaky portions of the feet. In extreme cases, itchiness causes open sores which may, in turn, lead to bleeding.
There are several home remedies available for the management of itchy feet, many of which are readily available at home. Each of the remedies indicates the approximate time required and the ingredients needed. The itchiness should ease after a couple of days, but if it does not, it is extremely important to see a dermatologist so as to diagnose any particular conditions.
1. Tea Tree Oil:
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: 5 Tablespoons of tea tree oil, a foot bath, warm water and a dry towel.
Tea tree oil is one of the most ideal home remedies for treating itchy feet. It is particularly effective in treating cases where the itchiness results from fungal infections as tea tree oil is a potent anti-fungal and antimicrobial. What’s more, tea tree oil prevents the infection from spreading to the rest of the feet. After using the remedy, it is imperative to dry the feet thoroughly to prevent the accumulation of moisture, and therefore cut back the spread of the fungi. Note that tea tree oil is extremely potent when used on its own, and must therefore be diluted prior to use.
- Add the tea tree oil to the warm water and mix well.
- Soak the feet in the warm water for 10 minutes, ensuring that the affected part of the feet is covered by the water.
- After 10 minutes, dry your feet thoroughly to deal with the itchiness and prevent the infections from spreading any further.
2. Oatmeal Foot Soak:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 2 Cups of oatmeal, foot basin, warm water and skin moisturizer.
Oatmeal is extremely helpful in managing itchy skin, thanks to its anti-pruritic properties. Pruritis is the medical term for extreme itching that occurs on undamaged skin. Oatmeal therefore, helps relieve the itchiness and offers much-needed relief from itchy feet. In addition to this, oatmeal is also an excellent anti-inflammatory that helps reduce inflammation and deal with the irritation within the feet. Soaking feet in oatmeal mixture is a simple way to remedy itchy feet. There are two ways you may use oatmeal, either by soaking in a foot-bath or by applying thickened oatmeal directly to the affected part of the feet.
Using oatmeal soak
- Place two cups of the oatmeal in the foot basin and pour in the warm water.
- Soak your feet in this water for about 20 minutes or so to relieve itching.
- Dry the feet well, especially between the toes as this is where itching is most intense.
- Follow this up with the application of a proper skin moisturizer.
- Use this remedy at least twice daily to alleviate the symptoms of itchy feet.
Using thickened oatmeal
- Take a cup of oatmeal and add some warm water so that you have a thickened paste-like mass. The idea here is to use just a little water so that the mass is not runny for easy application.
- Place the oatmeal mass directly on the affected feet and massage in gentle motions for relief from the itchiness and inflammation.
- Rinse the thickened oatmeal after 20 minutes.
- Dry your feet and moisturize well.
- Repeat this procedure thrice daily in order to speed up the recovery process.
3. Baking Soda Paste:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 3 Tablespoons of baking soda, 6 teaspoons of warm water to prepare the paste, cold water to rinse, clean towel and cornstarch.
Prepare baking soda paste to treat itchy feet and relieve the symptoms associated with the condition. Baking soda not only helps get rid of the burning sensation, it also soothes the affected feet and calms the discomfort. Additionally, baking soda is a powerful anti-inflammatory that comes in handy for the natural treatment of itchy feet. Most of all, baking soda paste helps get rid of feet odor that is a common aspect of itchy feet.
- Add the water to the baking soda and mix well so that you have a thick paste.
- Apply the paste on the affected feet, paying attention to the region in between the toes as this is often the most affected part.
- Spread the paste and massage the paste or about 15 minutes.
- Use the cold water to rinse the paste off.
- Dry the feet properly to eliminate the moisture and prevent infections arising from the itchiness.
- You will then dust your feet with cornstarch to soak up any sweat or residual moisture.
- Repeat the procedure twice daily, preferably in the morning and just before bedtime after a hard day’s work.
4. Saltwater Soak:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1 Tablespoon of table salt, warm water in a foot basin and dry towel.
Sometimes all you need to do to get rid of itchiness in your feet is to soak in salty water. Salty water is an excellent disinfectant which helps keep infections at bay while soothing the itchiness. At the onset, soaking in salty water may cause an intense burning sensation, but this gives way to quick healing. Salt water is also ideal for getting rid of foot odor that usually accompanies itchy feet as is the case in people who sweat excessively.
- Add the salt in the warm water and mix well to dissolve the salt.
- Soak your feet in the warm salty water for 20 minutes.
- Dry well and repeat as often as you need to to get rid of itchiness.
5. Hydrogen Peroxide:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 2 Tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide, a basin filled with warm water and a clean towel.
Use hydrogen peroxide to soothe itchy feet because it gets rid of bacteria and fungi that often causes infections. When diluted with water, the hydrogen peroxide creates a toxic environment for the bacteria and fungi, thus killing off their population and reducing the itchiness. Remember that you should only use 3% Hydrogen peroxide; anything more and you are likely to cause skin damage which will make the itchiness far more intense.
- Mix the Hydrogen peroxide with water to dilute and make the remedy suitable for use.
- Soak your feet in the solution and allow the hydrogen peroxide to permeate in the skin folds between the toes.
- After 15 minutes, rinse and dry the feet.
- Make sure you apply an ideal skin moisturizer to prevent the skin from drying up.
- Use this remedy at least twice daily until the itchiness subsides and the condition heals completely.
6. White Vinegar:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 3 Tablespoons of white vinegar, warm water in a foot basin, clean towel and foot moisturizer
White vinegar is a suitable home remedy for the management of itchy feet. This is because in some cases, the itchiness is the result of fungal or bacterial infection. When white vinegar comes into contact with the infected feet, its acidic nature helps destroy the infection-causing micro-organisms, and allows the feet to recover well. A good skin moisturizer is essential when using this remedy since white vinegar strips the skin of its moisture. Follow the simple directions below to get the most out of white vinegar.
- Add the white vinegar to the water and mix well.
- Immerse your feet in for 10-15 minutes.
- After using this remedy, follow up with the application of an appropriate skin moisturizer to prevent the skin from drying.
- Dry skin, as mentioned above, is one of the causes of itchy feet, and must therefore be dealt with at all costs.
7. Petroleum Jelly:
Time Required: 15 Min
What You Need: Warm water and soap, clean towel, petroleum jelly and a clean pair of socks
Dry skin is one of the most common causes of itchy skin. To deal with this, make use of good old petroleum jelly to prevent the skin from drying, and therefore deal with the itchiness. The best way to use petroleum jelly is to apply it on clean feet that have just been washed. This not only opens up the skin pores, it also allows easy moisture retention which ensures the skin remains moist and itch-free. Petroleum jelly is also a plain remedy, and does not cause skin irritation for the most part. A clean pair of socks is a necessary addition to this remedy because it seals in the remedy’s action and keeps off the itching sensation for a speedy recovery.
- Clean your feet with warm soapy water and rinse well.
- Dry the feet well, especially between the toes.
- Follow this up by applying a generous amount of petroleum jelly,making sure you massage it in.
- Lastly, wear your socks just before bedtime to seal in the effects.
- Use this remedy daily until the itchiness is eliminated.
8. Peppermint Oil Foot Soak:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 5 Drops of peppermint oil, warm water n a foot basin, towel and petroleum jelly
Peppermint essential oil may just be the remedy you need for the natural treatment of itchy feet. The oil is best known for its cooling and soothing properties which go a long way in reducing the pain and inflammation. The oil is also helpful for dry skin. Combine the oil’s healing properties with the benefits of petroleum jelly as mentioned above for speedy recovery.
- First dilute the peppermint oil using warm water and mix well.
- Soak your feet in the water, making sure you rub between the toes too.
- Dry the feet and apply a thick layer of petroleum jelly.
- Use this remedy twice daily to eliminate the itchiness.
9. Additional Tips to Manage Itchy Feet:
- Always remember to dry your feet thoroughly between the toes to discourage the growth of fungi and bacteria on the moist skin.
- Invest in cotton socks that allow the skin to breathe. Avoid socks and footwear made of synthetic fibers as this actually encourages sweating and increases the extent of itching.
- Get the right sized shoes to avoid pinching the toes.
- Keep toenails short and trimmed.
- Avoid walking barefoot in wet public places such as gyms, locker rooms and pool areas as it becomes easy to get infections. Choose to wear slippers or flip-flops instead to reduce direct contact with the wet surfaces.
These remedies should reduce the discomfort of itchy feet. If, however, the itchiness does not ease after a period of time, consult a dermatologist for proper diagnosis.