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How to Give Foot Care

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 5, 2023.

What is foot care?

Foot care is when you wash and check your feet or another person's feet. Check the feet before, during, and after foot care. Foot care is important to help prevent problems, such as open sores. People with conditions such as diabetes or poor blood flow should do foot care each day.

Diabetic Foot Care

How do I wash the feet?

  • Wear gloves if you are cleaning someone else's feet.
  • Use a bathtub, shower, or large basin. Check the temperature of the water with your wrist. Make sure the water is not too hot or too cold.
  • Put a towel or waterproof pad under the feet to be cleaned.
  • Wash the entire foot, especially between each toe. Do not use antibacterial soaps. These soaps may be too strong and cause skin dryness and irritation.
  • Rinse the feet with warm water.
  • Dry the feet completely, including between the toes.
  • Rub lotion on the feet. Do not apply lotion between the toes.

How do I check the feet?

  • Look at the tops and bottoms of the feet, between the toes, and around the toenails. Use a mirror to see the bottom of the foot more closely.
  • Look for any changes in skin color, such as redness.
  • Check for tenderness or sores.
  • Check for cold or swollen feet, burning, tingling, or numbness.
  • Do a foot check after exercise, and after any walking.

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

  • You notice new changes, such as a sore.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.