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What causes cracked heels?

Many people suffer from cracked heels which can be painful if left untreated. Cracked heels or heel fissures are caused by standing too long, wearing ill-fitting shoes, dry skin, going barefoot or wearing open heeled sandals, having flat feet, diabetes, neuropathy or psoriasis. When weight and pressure are applied to the foot when standing, walking and exercising, the plump pad under the heel, pushes outwards and puts pressure on the skin. If the skin is dry and lacking in moisture, it becomes stiff and less elastic so the skin can crack and develop fissures in the heels.

How to treat cracked heels

Selfcare is important and cracked heels can be prevented or at lease minimised. An emollient heel balm containing Urea like Kroko Heel Balm can be used treat cracked heels. Emollient creams penetrate the skin and reduce water loss filling the gaps in the skin which makes skin feel smooth, soft, and flexible. Alternately, a liquid plaster like Kroko SkinFilm can be painted over the cracks to hygienically seal them and allow healing.

Kroko Heel Balm gently softens and hydrates rough, dry and cracked heels (and elbows) leaving skin smooth and soft.

Directions for use

1. Soften the heels by bathing in hot water to remove flaking skin. If there is very thick callused skin on the heel buff this with soap and a pumice stone to remove excess dry skin. Note try to keep baths and shower to 5 minutes to prevent skin drying out.
2. Dry feet thoroughly.
3. Rub Kroko heel balm into heels thoroughly morning and evening.
4. For even better results, after applying cream in the evening cover with socks while sleeping to lock in the moisture.
Kroko SkinFilm is a clear liquid plaster which can be painted over skin fissures to help them heel, preventing them drying out further. SkinFilm creates a hygienic, flexible, moisture and dustproof barrier without the bulkiness of a plaster which allows natural healing to take place. SkinFilm must not be used on open wounds which are infected or inflamed.

Directions for use

1. Clean the feet well and dry thoroughly.
2. Apply a thin layer of SkinFilm to cover the heels.
3. To renew dressing, apply more SkinFilm tp the old dressing which will soften anc can be gently wiped off using a clean dry swab. Renew dressing as needed until healing is complete.
4. Apply a thin layer of SkinFilm to cover wound completely using the applicator cap. SkinFilm dries quickly leaving an invisible, hygienic, flexible dressing allowing natural healing to take place.
5. To renew dressing, apply more SkinFilm to the old dressing which will soften and can be gently wiped off using a clean dry swab or lint. Renew dressing as needed until healing is complete.

In severe cases where heels become inflamed or the cracks become infected, speak to your doctor as severely dry, cracked heels may be a sign of an underlying health condition like neuropathy or diabetes.

How to prevent cracked heels

Losing weight, moisturising your feet or most importantly wearing properly fitting, closed shoes and socks can help prevent heels cracking. 

To combat dry skin, moisturise your feet when you moisturise the rest of your skin. This provides a protective barrier over your skin and prevents water from escaping and the skin from drying out. It is best to moisturise feet at night so the cream can be absorbed into the skin which will prevent them becoming slippery and sweaty during the day. Wearing a pair of socks after moisturising will help prevent them drying out overnight. 

Gently rubbing a pumice stone against the thickened skin on the heel, once the skin is moisturized, may help reduce the thickness of the hard skin and calluses. Be particularly gentle if you suffer from neuropathy or diabetes and avoid foot files or using scissors to cut away dry skin.

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