With about a month still left to go in the fall, the northeast is already feeling the first effects of winter. This week, residents in upstate New York were digging themselves out from more than two feet of snow.
Winter officially begins on Dec. 21, so there’s still time to prepare ways to protect your feet from the anticipated rough weather, thanks to some easy-to-follow suggestions from The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS).
Keeping feet safe begins with wearing proper footwear. According to ACFAS member Dr. Greg Catalano, falls are one of the most common causes of weather-related injuries, so play it smart. Opt for shoes and boots with plenty of traction on icy surfaces. There are lots of affordable options available for the whole family from such brands as Sorel, Timberland and Bogs.
Next, make sure boots provide sufficient warmth against frigid temperatures, with styles lined with insulating materials such as Thinsulate. “Wearing water-resistant insulated footwear serves as a barrier between the feet and outside elements,” noted Catalano. Doing so is particularly important for those with health issues such as neuropathy, a condition that blocks normal blood flow in the feet. “The thicker the insulation, the greater the protection is between a person’s feet and the adverse effects caused by cold weather,” added Catalano. Check out the wave of water-resistant and waterproof shearling styles from brands such as Ugg, Emu Australia and Bearpaw.
Last but not least, keep feet dry because damp feet can cause cold feet and be just as harmful. Wearing moisture-wicking socks will help feet dry from wetness caused by sweat, while water-resistant footwear will ward off external elements that can cause dampness. For some, adding foot warmers in their shoes can serve as an extra layer of protection.