The most common cold-related injuries can be prevented by thinking about your feet. Slips and falls are common in icy conditions, but so are conditions like chilblains and trenchfoot. Before you go outside, consider what’s ON, AROUND, and UNDER your foot:

What’s ON Your Foot:

If you’re going outside in the cold, it’s important to wear the right socks. Some materials trap moisture which can lead to blisters and infections. Other materials don’t insulate well against the cold. The warmest and driest socks are wool, but fleece (made from polyester) is also good.

What’s AROUND Your Foot:

Wearing the right shoes seems like a no-brainer. When you are preparing to go out into the cold, consider how protected your foot is from the wet and freezing temperature, and how well it can grip the ground. There are many kinds of shoes to choose from, but you want a dependable shoe that covers your whole foot and even your ankle, fits well, can be laced or zipped, and has good tread on the bottom. Pack up your clogs and sandals so you won’t even be tempted to slip them on.

What’s UNDER Your Foot:

The entrances to your house should have a durable, textured mat. Keep Ice melt close at hand so that you can keep your threshold ice-free. When you are walking on sidewalks or in parking lots, stay alert to the conditions of the pavement. The best way to prevent a fall is to avoid slippery situations. If you must cross a patch of ice, move slowly and keep your weight centered; do not lean or lunge.

Stay safe from winter injuries by thinking on your feet! Having the right socks, shoes and awareness helps to prevent slips and falls, and keeps your feet healthy.