Foot care in the Way to Santiago is essential to have a good Camino. In many cases blisters, chafing or even tendonitis appear. Therefore, it is very important to learn how to take care of them and cure them. It’s also important to know when it will be necessary to visit a professional.
One of the most repeated tips is not to release footwear for the Way to Santiago. Wearing new shoes will increase the chances of blisters and chafing. We also do not recommend using very old shoes that are damaged.
If you want to have a good foot care, it is best to wear shoes for 2 or 3 months before starting the Camino. It is even better if you are training with long walks. Taking walks before the Camino habituate your feet and you will suffer less blisters.
The socks are another important part of our foot care equipment. The socks should never be made of cotton, but of synthetic material and without seams. Also, make sure that you do not get wrinkles when you put them on, as this could generate chafing. Many pilgrims recommend applying Vaseline on the soles of the feet and between the fingers to avoid chafing.
Cure: The blisters
Blisters are very common among pilgrims. These appear because of the continuous rubbing when walking or by the excessive humidity that’s formed inside the sock, due to the sweat. If we can detect a blister in the first moment, it is best to put a self-adhesive patch, a gauze or apply Vaseline to relieve friction.
However, it is normal to detect already formed blisters. These are very uncomfortable to keep walking. The ideal thing of foot care in this case, is going to a clinic. There, professionals can puncture and cure the blister. If you do not have this possibility because the clinic is far away, and you are going to do it yourself, you must be very careful with the hygienic conditions.
The first thing is cleaning. All the material you use must be sterilized (needle, gauze…). Remember, to sterilize a needle you can burn it with a lighter. In addition, the feet have to be clean too. As well as the hands that are going to do the cure.
The first thing will be to puncture the blister and dry the liquid with gauze. It is important to extract all the liquid. Next, we will apply betadine. Finally, we put a thread in the needle and introduce it and remove it from the blister. This will cause the fluid to drain and the blister will not re-form.
If you notice more discomfort, for example, muscle pain, the ideal is to always go to professionals and comply with their recommendations.
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