How to Prevent Blisters

When you notice an area of raised skin with liquid inside, you have developed a blister. You may notice blisters form on feet and hands from pressure and rubbing. They may feel like calluses but they develop a lot more quickly. You may develop blisters on your feet just after wearing uncomfortable shoes for a few hours. You may also develop blisters on your hand when using a shovel, hammer, or even riding your bike without wearing protective gear. If left untreated, areas that develop blisters may continue to be rubbed and turn into calluses.

How to Prevent Blisters

In order to prevent blisters, you need to know how they form in the first place. Friction and heat are the two most common causes of blisters. Any friction between the inside of your shoes and your skin will lead to the formation of blisters. Having sweaty or wet skin or having gravel or sand in your shoes may also cause blisters. Here are some suggestions to prevent blisters in certain situations. If you run a lot or love backpacking expeditions, you may benefit a lot by keeping the following tips in mind:

  1. Choose the Shoes That Fits: Make sure your shoes are neither too loose nor too tight. It is important to have at last a half-inch space between the tip of your shoe and your longest toe. Wear your shoes and walk around for a few minutes to ensure they fit perfectly. You will be better off going for a rounded "toe box" for the best fit. Also, keep in mind that your feet may swell up to 8% during the day, so you will be better off shopping in the afternoon.
  2. Select the Right Socks: It makes sense to wear cotton socks when running because they can absorb moisture and reduce foot odor as well. Remember that damp cloth can also cause friction, so you will be better off buying socks made of quick-drying synthetic fiber. Padded hiking and sports socks are also available online and work quite well to prevent blisters. You may consider wearing two layers of socks to prevent friction and moisture.
  3. Keep Debris Out of Shoes and Socks: Any foreign material such as twigs and sand can make its way to your shoes and socks and cause friction, which will cause blisters. Stop right away when you feel something in your socks or shoes. Remove it before you start running again.
  4. Use Insoles: Consider using comfortable and supportive insoles to understand how to prevent blisters. These insoles provide more comfort and better support. For this, you should first buy shoes with removable insoles. You can always choose from different varieties of insoles, including insoles made of memory foam, neoprene, gel-filled pads, and other materials. Try neoprene insoles if you are prone to developing blisters. Be sure to try out a number of insoles to identify the best one for your foot type and activity.
  5. Keep Your Feet Dry: To keep your feet dry, you should choose a pair made of material that is breathable and watertight. Nylon and plastic shoes are not a good choice; you will be better off wearing shoes made of canvas, leather, and mesh. Do not continue to run if your soaks have become wet. Take a break and replace them first.

For Girls in High Heels

You can develop blisters when wearing high heels. Here is what to do to learn how to prevent blisters in high heels.

  1. Make Your Shoes Fit Well. Do not wait until you develop a blister to use some padding. Be sure to walk in your heels the moment you bring them home. Do it for at least an hour to identify any problem areas. Even a slight discomfort will turn into a big issue when you continue to wear them. Be sure to pad the inside of your shoes to make them more comfortable.
  2. Mold Your Shoes to Fit Your Feet. You can mold your new shoes to make them more comfortable. If you have just bought leather shoes, simply spritz with water until they are slightly damp. Wear them and walk around until they become dry. This will help your shoes form to your feet.
  3. Lubricate Your Shoes. You can eliminate the discomfort temporarily by lubricating the problem area. You may not want to do it for everyday shoes, but you can still try it when you buy a new pair of sneakers. Using K-Y lubricant is often a better choice because Vaseline can ruin your shoes.
  4. Buy Shoes at the End of the Day. This is mainly because your feet swell through the day, especially if you are buying shoes in summer months. Be sure to try shoes on a hard surface while buying. Some shoe stores make sales floors extra comfortable, so you do not usually notice any discomfort when trying your new pair of heels there.

Here is a good video to help you learn how to prevent foot blisters: 

How to Care for Blisters

Once you have developed blisters, you will have to be a bit patient because they take time to heal. Make sure to keep them clean and dry all the time while they are healing. Avoid putting pressure on the area while your blister is healing. You can also cover them with a bandage. In some cases, it is a better idea to drain a blister if it causes irritation or sticks out. Avoid doing this if you have diabetes or poor circulation. Here are the steps to take when draining your blister:

  • Take a sterilized needle and use rubbing alcohol on it as well as on the surface of your blister.
  • Keep the needle parallel to the skin and introduce it into the side of your blister.
  • Take a sterilize gauze and dab the blister with it to facilitate the drainage. Do not remove the roof the blister yet.
  • Finish by applying antibacterial ointment after draining your blister. You can cover it with a Band-Aid as well.
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