You Stand On Your Feet All Day Long - But What Do You Actually Know About Them?
Feet are often taken for granted - we stuff them into high heels, make them sweat in tennis shoes, and run around on them all day long. What do you know about your feet? The human foot is a highly complex part of your body that can suffer many different ailments.
From famous feet (did you know Ashton Kutcher has webbed feet?) to big feet, there's plenty of myths out there. Here are some feet facts to boost your foot knowledge. You'll be a polydactyly and hyperhidrosis expert in no time.
Your Feet Have A Lot Going On
You're Born Without An Arch
The arch in your foot actually doesn't develop until you're 2 or 3 years old; babies are born without one and have fat filling in that area (which is what makes their feet exceptionally chubby and cute).
When a baby first learns to stand, they're not strong enough to support an arch just yet - so you won't know if your child is flat-footed until they're 4 or 5.
You're Not The Only One Who Can Have Too Many Fingers Or Toes
Polydactyly, the medical term for being born with too many fingers or toes, will typically result in a child having surgery, but if there's no bone in the extra finger or toe, it can be tied off without surgery. When a fetus is developing the hands and feet start off as paddles, and then fingers and toes form from that. Polydactyly occurs when the paddle effectively splits too many times (webbed fingers or toes occur when the opposite happens).
It occurs in about one of 1,000 births and can be inherited. Many animals can be born with polydactyly as well - cats, dogs, and even horses.
Foot Size Is Not Indicative Of The Size Of... Other Things
Let's put this myth to rest. There was an actual, totally authentic medical study done to determine if there was any correlation between foot size and the size of a man's package. It turned out that there was not.
The researchers even did all the measuring themselves, thus making certain that men weren't adding an inch or two.
Your Feet May Be Trying To Tell You Something
Small changes in your feet and toes can potentially warn you of bigger health problems. Something as innocent-seeming as dry, flaky skin that won't go away could indicate thyroid problems. Red lines under your toenails could mean that you have endocarditis, which is a type of heart infection.
If your feet hurt in the morning, it could be plantar fasciitis or arthritis.
Don't Blame Your Feet For Sweating
Your feet have a lot of sweat glands - 250,000, in fact. However, your feet are supposed to sweat, as sweating helps your body regulate its temperature. Regardless of whether or not you're engaging in physical activity, your feet are sweating all the time.
Hyperhidrosis, when your feet sweat too much, can be embarrassing and sometimes lead to blisters or Athlete's foot. However, aside from just being too sweaty, the presence of bacteria will make your feet smell pretty bad. Typically, excessively sweaty feet can be managed with simple things like anti-bacterial soap or foot powder. If that doesn't help, you may need Botox injections in your feet.