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Foot Health: Sock it to me — but make sure to properly cover your feet with the right materials

By Dr. Jamie Settles Carter
Special to KyForward

As you know, socks are a staple of everyone’s wardrobe.  Socks come in a variety of colors, lengths and materials.

If you sit down for any amount of time to watch television, you will more than likely see commercials for socks made out of materials such as copper, acrylic, Lyra and Isofil.

Sock History 

They have certainly come a long way from the earlier materials of animal skin and fur, as the Romans preferred to wrap their feet in leather.

The Elizabethans liked to wrap their toes in silk. Our ancestors did all of this for one main purpose, warmth. We know now that none of these materials are good for the skin on our feet.

Sure they kept the heat in, but they also kept the sweat in. I’m fairly positive there were some raging cases of athlete’s foot back in the day.

Sock Shopping

When shopping for socks, it is important to get the correct fit for your feet. There’s nothing more irritating than a sock being too small and slowly falling down into your shoe.

The length can vary from short, tall, crew, to “no-see” lengths, whichever is your preference. The material of the sock is the most important aspect. You want to look for a soft material that says “moisture wicking.” This takes the sweat away from your skin and locks it into the material.

Some good materials include bamboo, copper fibers and wool. Yes, that’s right, bamboo! All of these materials help wick away the sweat. Poly-blend material socks also are good at absorbing moisture.

This winter time, don’t neglect your feet! Keep them warm and sock it to ’em


Dr. Jamie Settles Carter is a Podiatrist and partner at Lexington Podiatry

For more Foot Health columns, click here.

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