fbpx
How to take care of your feet

How to take care of your feet

Feet are amazing things. They carry us wherever we need to go. They’ve got thousands of tiny nerve endings on the soles of the feet. They’re built to support you no matter what you weigh. They deserve your love and attention! Here are some great ways to keep your feet feeling happy and loved.

How do you keep your feet happy? Treat them to some fabulous, supportive, comfortable footwear.

Shoes should not hurt. They should fit nicely, with room for the toes to wiggle a little. Footwear that nips, pinches, or makes your toes go numb should be left in the shop. Shoes should also not be overly loose. Your feet should not need to grip your shoes to prevent them from falling off! 

Some shoe shops have started doing half sizes and a range of width fittings for adult shoes which is a huge bonus as many of us are between full shoe sizes. If you’ve not had your shoe size checked recently try using this shoe size chart.

The time of day you go shopping for your shoes can also affect the sizing. Your feet tend to swell towards the end of the day so it’s better to go shopping for shoes late afternoon to accommodate this.

high heels

Rotate your footwear and wear lower heels at home

It is good to have several pairs of shoes or boots and to rotate them so you’re not wearing the same pair day in and day out. If you need or like to wear high heels for work try changing into something softer and lower heeled when you come home. 

treat your feet to a foot spa

Treat them to a spa experience

You can do this at home using a bowl of warm water (a washing up bowl will be just fine. I have a special washing up bowl that I use just for feet!) Always check the water temperature before putting your feet in.

You can pop in some nice bubble bath or a handful of epsom salts or add a couple of drops of essential oil like peppermint or lavender essential oil to a teaspoon of sunflower oil and swish that in. Or add a few slices of fresh lemon and some lavender flowers. This can be a lovely thing to do at the end of a hard day at work (or shopping, or chasing after the children!) Towel dry.

Give yourself a mini pedicure

Keep your toenails cut relatively short (but not too short) and ensure you don’t cut down the sides of the nail.

Always cut your toenails straight so they don’t end up digging into your toe. If you find your toenail has started growing into your toe please see a Foot Health Practitioner or Podiatrist for help. If it looks red, hot, is painful or feels infected please see your GP as well. 

Moisturise your feet regularly

Moisturise your feet regularly

Make moisturising your feet part of your daily routine. Gently massaging foot lotion into your feet before bed can help you to relax as well as keeping the skin on your feet nice, soft and supple. 

Put your feet up!

Sitting down with your feet up can feel amazing.  Especially if you’ve been on your feet all day or sat at your desk. Either lay flat with your feet resting on the wall or prop your feet up on cushions on your sofa arm. Stay like this for 10-15 minutes. This helps your lymph drain better and helps blood flow back towards the heart.

Partner foot massage

Get your partner to give you a foot massage

Using a little foot or body lotion, get your partner to gently massage your feet.

My three favourite foot massage moves are

1. Holding the ankles by cupping your hand under your partners ankles and just holding them for a few moments. This can be wonderfully reassuring.

2. Wrap one foot up in a fluffy towel. Gently rotate the ankle of the other foot in a series of slow but random movements. Do this for a few minutes then swap over. Only do this if your partner has full mobility in their ankles.

3. Very slowly move your hands up your partners leg towards the knee, gently slide back down again and repeat 3 times.

Finish by wrapping both feet up in towels and holding for a few minutes.

podiatrist

Who to turn to if you have a problem with your feet

Sometimes we need help keeping our feet healthy.

If you have any problems with your feet from:

  • Fungal nail infections
  • Painful bunions,
  • Verrucae,
  • Ingrowing toenails,
  • Athletes foot,
  • Diabetic foot care,
  • Corns,
  • Calluses 
  • Anything else that’s causing pain or discomfort for your feet

Consult your local Podiatrist (Chiropodist) or Foot Health Practitioner. Don’t be afraid to go, they will have seen everything before! 

It may be possible to get a referral to a Podiatrist via your GP if the condition is causing pain or loss of mobility.

image how to take care of your feet

Resources

If you would like to find out more about National Feet Week please visit https://nationalfeetweek.org #nationalfeetweek

Read my article about Taking Care of your Legs 

Boroughbridge Chiropody https://www.boroughbridgechiropody.co.uk

 

Like this article?

Come and Join me on Pinterest www.pinterest.co.uk/sarahcooperreflexology

Simple ways to create a more active lifestyle

Simple ways to create a more active lifestyle

 If, like me, your early experience of being active revolved around those dreaded PE classes where you were the last to be picked for the team and you still associate physical activity with pain, rejection and humiliation you might benefit from some simple ideas to help you to create a more active lifestyle. 

Being active doesn’t mean you have to be cold, bored, or wear a silly PE skirt. It can even be fun! You don’t even need to find huge chunks of time to go to the gym, or to spend hours a day working on your fitness (unless, of course, you want to.)

In fact the easiest way to create an active lifestyle is to take little steps in the right direction so that activity is something you do as part of your general life, rather than something you have to find time to do. Or worse, another chore!

gym kit

Set yourself up for success

If you like going to the gym or swimming, it is useful to have the kit you need to go all ready and to hand so you can quickly go to the gym or pool without having to find where you put your goggles or find your other trainer, or scurry around looking for your gym shorts or your headphones. Regular swimmers may find it useful to have 2 or 3 swimsuits so you can always pop a clean one and a clean towel into your bag every time.

If you need to drive to your gym because it is too far away to walk, maybe try keeping your kit in the car boot ready for when you need it! Maybe keep your membership card in a separate purse in your gym bag so it’s always ready for action when you need it.

For those of you who like to go for walks in the park, always make sure you have some suitable footwear and a good waterproof coat to hand so that if you do get a few minutes to spare you can quickly change your shoes and go for a walk.

Always having the right gear in the right place at the right time helps you be able to get active when inspiration strikes. Often the very thought of having to go in search of ‘stuff’ is enough to make us slump back on the sofa in despair. So give yourself a chance and set yourself up for success!

gym kit

Dance whilst the kettle boils

Whilst you’re waiting for the kettle to boil, put on some upbeat music and get dancing.

Dancing improves not only your activity levels but can also lift your mood! If you have a music streaming system like Spotify you will be able to create your own playlist with your favourite songs to dance along to! Being active can be great fun!

gym kit

Meet a friend and go for a walk!

Instead of meeting a friend for a coffee in a coffee shop why not arrange to go for a walk together instead and maybe grab a takeaway coffee or take a flask with you? This way you can get your daily step count in and be sociable at the same time!

If your friends aren’t available to meet up for a walk, go on your own! It can be wonderfully clearing to go for a brisk walk on your own.

gym kit

Have a dog? Take it for a walk! Don’t have a dog? Take yourself for a walk!

If you had a dog you’d probably take it for a walk two or three times a day. If you don’t have a dog you can still go for a walk several times a day if you like. I have a ‘dog walking coat’ despite not owning a dog! I use it for going for walks in the rain.

gym kit

Remember that wonderful feeling!

Do you remember a time when you did do something active and you ended up with a big smile on your face?

Maybe you came back inside after a brisk walk on a chilly day and your face started to glow and the warmth of the central heating hit you as you opened your front door?

That feeling of being happy, energised and truly alive? If you remember that feeling, it can help motivate you to get moving. Afterall we all want to feel fantastic don’t we?

gym kit

Run (or rather walk!) errands on foot

If you have to run errands like going to the post office or to pop to the shop to buy bread or milk, why not walk there rather than taking the car (if it’s practical to do so!) For smaller journeys it can be so tempting to always take the car but if you have enough time, walk!

If you’re going upstairs and don’t have a mobility issue, take the stairs. Or at least take the stairs on the way down!

Find other little ways of slotting exercise and being active into your ordinary daily lifestyle.

gym kit

Get outside at lunchtime if you can! 

Instead of eating as you work, try eating your lunch outside when the weather is nice. Maybe go for a short walk whilst you’re out there. Get some fresh air into your lungs and let go of any of the tension from being sat at your desk! It will also stop you getting a crumby keyboard! If you have a proper break and a change of scenery you’re likely to work more productively in the afternoon! 

gym kit

Check what’s on your doorstep

Is there a nature reserve, woodland, lake or park nearby that you’ve not explored recently? Maybe take a flask, a blanket, a picnic or some snacks and go exploring. Take some fabulous photographs and make a day of it. Take in the sounds, colours, smells and textures whilst you’re there. Drink it all in and enjoy the experience.

gym kit

Put some housework tunes on and do some housework!

Ok ok, so maybe this isn’t the most exciting way of keeping fit but housework can be great for clearing your mind whilst also getting active! On most music streaming services there are loads of fabulous playlists entitled ‘housework songs’ and they’re normally the more upbeat tunes. So get mopping or vacuuming, sweep away the cobwebs off the ceiling, and dance whilst you dust. The house will look sparkling clean in no time!

gym kit

Book your active time into your diary

If you’re wanting to be more active and have a gym membership it can be useful to book your gym time into your own diary like you would any other appointment.

It can also help to go 2-3 times a week at first, rather than going 4 or 5 times in week one, twice in week two and then having the rest of the month off!

If you know which days/nights you’re going to the gym you can plan around them and you won’t be as tempted to skip as they’re in the diary. 

gym kit

Over to you!

As you can see, being active can seamlessly slot into your daily life and be fun too! 

What are YOU going to do to be more active today?

Please let me know in the comments box below

Migraine – What it is and what you can do about it

Migraine – What it is and what you can do about it

What is Migraine?

Migraine is generally a severe, one-sided headache, which may be accompanied by visual disturbances, neurological symptoms and/or nausea and vomiting. Visual disturbances can include flashing lights, zig-zagging, double vision, blind spots and blurring.

Neurological symptoms can include tingling in the limbs, pins and needles, facial numbness, loss of sensation or numbness in the arms and legs, confusion, dizziness and loss of speech.

Some patients get ‘just’ the headache and others get some of the other symptoms and this may vary from attack to attack. It is also possible to have a silent migraine where you get the other symptoms without the headache. Children can get a stomach migraine which makes them vomit rather than necessarily having a headache.

It is thought to affect around 6 million people in the UK  with 190,000 people having a migraine on any given day. So if you suffer with migraines, you’re not alone.

What causes migraine?

Whilst the causes of migraine are not yet fully understood it is widely thought that it may be linked to abnormal activity in the brain which in turn has an effect on the way the brain functions. Certain types of migraine (for example Hemiplegic migraine) may be hereditary and due to a genetic factor. 

There are a range of well-known triggers which seem to either spark off a migraine or to exacerbate them. Everyone is different so it’s useful to isolate what is likely to trigger yours and to avoid that as much as possible.

Migraine triggers include wine and cheese

Migraine Triggers

Migraines can be triggered by a range of stimuli including:

  • Skipping meals or eating in a rush,
  • Being dehydrated,
  • Drinking alcohol especially red wine and darker spirits
  • Eating certain foods including cheese, tomatoes, chocolate, citrus fruits
  • Additives in diet, slimline and processed foods such as artificial sweeteners,nitrates, MSG and preservatives
  • Drinking caffeine
  • Hunger/Thirst
  • Stress at home, school, university or work
  • Weather and environmental factors (such as thundery weather or a high pollen count)
  • Hormones
  • Working environment, especially when sitting in the same position all day
  • Lack of or too much sleep!
  • Strong perfumes
  • Strong sunlight/bright lights/loud noises
  • Tension in the neck and shoulders
  • Some medications/contraceptive pills
  • Overusing painkillers. Having too many headache tablets can give you a rebound headache!

Keep Track

Keep a note of what you eat, how you feel, what you drink, your stress levels etc and see if a pattern builds. Apps like Migraine Buddy are useful to help you keep track of your migraines.

 Hormonal Migraines

There may be a hormonal element to migraines in women. Some women note that they have migraines during the 2-3 days in the run up to their period and in the first 3 days of their period. It is thought that a drop in oestrogen levels can contribute to headaches.  A period tracking app like Clue may also be useful.

Pregnancy can also have an effect on migraines although this does vary from person to person. Whilst migraines are fairly common in pregnancy, if you do suddenly get a severe headache after 20+ weeks (especially from week 24 onwards) which is accompanied by visual problems, pain in the rib cage, vomiting, fluid retention or sudden swelling in your hands, feet or face, contact your Midwife or 111 urgently.

The perimenopause, menopause and HRT medication can all exacerbate migraines in some women.

 

Migraine triggers include wine and cheese

 How to manage a migraine

For occasional migraines the best solution would be to take a couple of over the counter painkillers, having a drink and a snack and going to bed in a darkened room until it passes.

If you feel nauseous you can buy anti-sickness tablets from your local pharmacy. There are also special migraine relief tablets that have an anti-sickness medication built-in. Double check that you’re having the correct amount of paracetamol in total as many of them already contain paracetamol so DON’T take them with paracetamol! If  you’re in any doubt ask your pharmacist for advice. Having an ice-pack might help (if carefully wrapped in a tea-towel) Try to stay hydrated and if you feel up to it, having regular snacks or small meals. 

When to get help from your GP

If you find that you’re having more than 5-8 migraines a month speak to your GP who may be able to prescribe a preventative medication or take a blood sample as sometimes migraines can be linked to a deficiency of a vitamin or mineral. There are also things you can be prescribed to stave off an attack as it happens, including injections and nasal sprays. If you have migraines a lot and other things haven’t worked, you might be referred to a specialist Headache nurse or to the Neurology department.

Migraine triggers include wine and cheese

 What else can help?

Reduce Stress

As migraines are often triggered or exacerbated by stress it is important to be as stress-free as possible. Finding ways of releasing stress and tension are very helpful in preventing or minimising migraines. Think of any areas of your life that might be particularly stressful. Is there anything you can do to make them less stressful? Any meetings you don’t need to attend? Children’s activities that they no longer enjoy? Feel free to say no to anything you find stressful, if you’re not contracted to be there!

Set up new systems

Sometimes setting up a new system can reduce stress right down. Like having something in the slow cooker ready for when you get back from football practice rather than having to start cooking from scratch when you’re tired and hungry. Or laying out clothes the night before. Or ensuring you take part in hobbies that you love.

Take time out. Do some exercise. Enjoy your hobbies

Taking a little time out for yourself can be really powerful. Gentle exercise such as walking, swimming or yoga can be useful as can mindfulness classes.

Having a regular reflexology treatment or massage can be helpful as it helps to balance the body and to relieve stress and tension and to allows you to have some time to yourself. Reflexology uses a firm but gentle pressure on specific points on the foot or face which is combined with massage techniques and holding specific points and is usually deeply relaxing and nurturing.

Acupuncture is also thought to be effective for managing migraines. This involves having tiny needles inserted into different areas of your body (and surprisingly doesn’t hurt!)

The key is to have a series of regular treatments over a period of about 6-8 weeks for best effect. If you have health insurance cover double check to see if this is covered in your policy as some do cover things like Reflexology or Acupuncture.

Additional Resources

Like this Post? Read my Chronic Migraine Survival Tool Kit blog post

 

 Over to you!

Do you suffer from migraines? How often do you get them a month and what are your triggers?

Please let me know in the comments below

 

 

How to take care of your feet

How to take care of your feet

Feet are amazing things. They carry us wherever we need to go. They've got thousands of tiny nerve endings on the soles of the feet. They're built to support you no matter what you weigh. They deserve your love and attention! Here are some great ways to keep your feet...

read more
What I’ve learned about the menopause

What I’ve learned about the menopause

Things I've learned about the menopause Until relatively recently, the menopause was something I'd heard of but didn't know much about. I figured that it had something to do with periods stopping, but I hadn't a clue when this was going to happen or what it involved....

read more
New moon, new beginnings

New moon, new beginnings

The new moon is a great time to begin new things, whether this a new job, relationship or  a new project! It's the perfect time for manifesting things you desire and is often a time of higher energy levels.  So if you've been contemplating starting a new blog, taking...

read more
10 quick ways to make yourself feel fantastic

10 quick ways to make yourself feel fantastic

Here’s 10 top ways to make you feel fantastic! They’re all simple things that make a huge impact on how you feel without breaking the bank or taking ages.  We all deserve to feel good, look great and have a fabulous life. If you find these tips helpful please share with your friends. 

take a shower

1. Take a Shower

Having a long hot shower can be very therapeutic. Wash your hair and condition it thoroughly. Give yourself a thorough pamper whilst in the shower. Use a good quality soap or shower gel and imagine the water washing away any worries and negativity as it goes down the drain. Imagine the shower to be cascading you with golden light, nurturing you and replenishing you. Once you’re out of the shower, wrap yourself up in the biggest, fluffiest towel you can find and dry your hair. Moisturise your body with a good quality body lotion if you have one.

dress to impress

2. Dress to Impress!

Once you’ve had a shower and blown dry your hair, put on clothes that make you feel fantastic. It doesn’t matter if it’s a special occasion or not, wear what makes you feel great!  If you enjoy wearing makeup put some of that one too. Know that you look GREAT!

Stay Hydrated

3. Feel Fantastic Tip: Stay Hydrated

If you stay well hydrated, you not only look good on the outside but you feel fantastic on the inside too. Having enough water helps flush out toxin and waste products, keeps your body in good working order, helps keep your head clear and helps prevent headaches

Reflexology is not an alternative therapy

4. Don’t sweat the small stuff

In life stuff happens. Life isn’t always smooth and we all make mistakes. Some of which are only minor, others not so much. We can’t change what has happened but we can change the way we feel about things. Only worry about the things you can’t change. If you can’t change it, don’t worry about it! 

look for the good in everyone

5. Look for the best in people.

Everyone has some good in them, even though in some people’s cases it can be hard to find at first glimpse. Everyone is doing their absolute best, given the resources, skills, knowledge and experience that they have available to them.

It can be helpful to view people with kind eyes. This doesn’t mean you can be a complete mug and let people walk all over you, but it does mean that we can look at others in a kind way. 

By learning to be kind to others, eventually we can apply this to ourselves. Often we are our own harshest critics and would benefit greatly for being as kind to ourselves as we are to others.

you are enough

6. Realise it’s never about you!

If you don’t get that job or promotion, or you’re not asked to do something or invited out. Remember it’s not about you. People are looking for something specific (usually what they think they need or want!) try not to take rejection personally. It really is not about you.

balanced diet

7. Eat a well-balanced diet

This doesn’t mean eating half a celery stick for breakfast and the other half for dinner. It’s about getting enough fruit and vegetables and protein, a sensible amount of carbohydrates, tailored to how much exercise you’re doing (or not as the case may be!) But it’s also about allowing yourself to have treats occasionally and to savour what you do eat. If possible eat at the table and take your time.

Try not to eat at your desk/running round the kitchen/in the car on your way to work. Making food look nicely presented can also add to the enjoyment of it. So get out your best china, use those glasses Auntie Joan gave you for your wedding day and make every day an occasion.

be kind to yourself

8. Be kind to yourself

We’ve already touched on this one, but being kind to yourself is so important. Ensure you notice when things are going well, when you’ve taken a step out of your comfort zone or told someone that you’re not willing to do whatever they’re asking you to do.

Celebrate every little baby step along the way. Take a little look back and see how far you’ve come.

Make sure you speak kindly to yourself at all times. Experiments show that pot plants tend to wither and die if they get shouted at and that meme going around saying that people are just pot plants with complicated emotions is so true. If you wouldn’t berate your pot plant for getting something wrong, don’t berate yourself. (If you would shout at a pot plant, you might need to seek help!)

mistake

9. Be chilled when you make a mistake

When you get something wrong (which you inevitably will, we all do!) be as calm as possible. If there is nothing we can do to rectify the situation, accepting it and learning from it is all we can do.

As a younger person I once misread a recipe for a tea-loaf and added in half a pint too much tea. Which resulted in a sloppy mess and me feeling like I was a rubbish cook. This is far from the truth of the matter, I am a good cook, I was just having a bad day and I’d just made a mistake!

the future will take care of itself

10. Know that the future will take care of itself

Often we worry about the future, trying to control outcomes and lying awake at night every night worrying about something that hasn’t happened yet.
Usually the future works out for the best, even if you don’t quite get the life you’d envisaged. Often the universe has something better waiting around the corner so instead of worrying about what might be and all the bad things that could happen, remind yourself that everything usually works out well in the end.

What’s YOUR top tip for feeling fantastic?

Please pop me a comment in the box below

How to have a perfectly imperfect Christmas this year

How to have a perfectly imperfect Christmas this year

How to have a no-pressure Christmas this year After the year we've all had the last thing we need on top is extra pressure to have a 'perfect' Christmas. So take the pressure off yourself and create the kind of Christmas that works for you and your family. Be...

read more
7 Great ways to ground yourself

7 Great ways to ground yourself

What is Grounding? When we are feeling grounded we have a strong connection between mind, body and soul. We feel connected, focused and strong. It offers us a layer of security. When we are grounded we are less affected by the moods, emotions and unreasonable...

read more
How to create the life you want

How to create the life you want

Before doing anything it would be a good idea to take a few deep breaths, to really connect back with yourself and your own intuition and to think about what you truly want. It's important to listen for that little inner voice who knows what you want and what you...

read more
Simple ways to create a more active lifestyle

Simple ways to create a more active lifestyle

 If, like me, your early experience of being active revolved around those dreaded PE classes where you were the last to be picked for the team and you still associate physical activity with pain, rejection and humiliation you might benefit from some simple ideas to...

read more
How to stop feeling stressed and start enjoying life again

How to stop feeling stressed and start enjoying life again

In order to find out how to stop feeling stressed we first need to look at what stress is and how it can negatively affect us if we have too much of it! What do we mean by stress? Stress is the feeling we have either when threatened or when experiencing extreme mental...

read more
What is Self Care and why do you need to prioritise it?

What is Self Care and why do you need to prioritise it?

What is Self Care? Self Care is defined as 'the deliberate and unselfish act of caring for yourself'. By acknowledging your own needs and ensuring these needs are met you set yourself up for being the best you can be. If you are nourished, emotionally replenished,...

read more
Sarah Cooper M.A.R

Sarah Cooper M.A.R

Reflexologist and Reiki Master Practitioner, Boroughbridge YO51

I offer Reflexology and Reiki Home Visits in the Boroughbridge area. I am happy to travel up to a 10 mile radius of Boroughbridge.

Member of Association of Reflexologists

I am a full member of the Association of Reflexologists and am fully qualified and insured.

To become a member of the Association of Reflexologists you have to be trained to a high standard, to have done case studies and passed multiple exams.

My Qualifications

You can read a full list of my qualifications here.

If you would like to learn more about me please read my About Me page

I'd love to hear from you!

Please feel free to get in touch for a no obligation chat or to book by either calling me on 07720397734 or emailing me on info@sarahcooper.co.uk 

Let's Connect

 

Listen to your body before it starts to scream

Listen to your body before it starts to scream

 What is your body trying to tell you?

 Take a few minutes to sit down in a quiet space and listen to what you body is trying to tell you. 

It may be that your body needs to take more water, or to rest for a while. Or to take some time out from the hustle and bustle of daily life and to have a rest.

It might need a nap, to have a massage or just to get up and dance. Maybe it needs some fresh air or some nourishing food. It could be that it fancies having a cream cake! Who knows! 

Consider what it is telling you and then make a judgement on whether what it’s asking for is a reasonable request. If it’s asking for a deep fried mars bar just tell it no! 

Listening to your body can be a little bit like noticing what is happening on the dashboard of your car. When the refuelling light comes on you can possibly ignore it for a mile or two, but if you pass a filling station it would be a good idea to pull over and refuel.

Your body is similar to this. Our internal batteries need recharging as often as our phones do. We need good food, plenty of fresh air and exercise, enough liquid to stay hydrated. We also need time to do the things we love. We need time to play and to potter around the house and garden doing those little jobs that we all need to do but often put off doing through lack of time

 

what does your body need right now

In order to truly listen, we need quiet.

It can be hard in an increasingly busy world to find time to stop and pay attention to what your body wants. So we need to create some quiet time. Time where we can be still and gather our thoughts. Some people meditate but others find that they have a chattering brain and find meditation unnecessarily stressful. If you’re one of the later perhaps go to bed half an hour earlier, get snuggled under the duvet and listen. Try quietly asking yourself ‘what do I need right now?’ 

Make note of what you hear in response to this. It may be something surprising. But listen, hear your body out. 

Don’t wait until you get to the stage it’s having a toddler stay tantrum, spits its dummy out of the pram and goes on strike!

 

Over to you! 

What is your body trying to say to you? Do you listen to it? Please let me know in the comments box below

Pin It on Pinterest