Why Do Feet Sweat? Reasons and Cures

Last updated: February 19, 2019
Published 12:25 am

A woman drying her sweaty feet with a towelThe human foot does many curious things which people often ask us about, such as “why do feet smell?” and “why do feet sweat?” In this brief article we’ll try to clear up the common issue of sweaty feet, its causes, symptoms, and ways to prevent.

As we go through daily motions, whether it’s through running, walking, or standing all day, everyone’s feet are bound to become sweaty due to being enclosed in shoes for prolonged periods of time. If you exercise at all, each foot is going to sweat just like the rest of your body is doing during exercising. However, there is a condition that involves excessive sweating of the feet which affects many people, young men in particular, known as hyperhidrosis.

One interesting fact that many don’t know is that each human foot has around 250,000 sweat glands. This particular fact is important because with that many sweat glands it means that feet actually produce more sweat than any other part of the body. So much in fact that per day, sweating feet could fill about half of a pint.

Causes and Symptoms

When it comes to hyperhidrosis, there is no real cause. People who sweat excessively will naturally have very sweaty feet too, which is the most common and obvious symptom. Another tell tale sign of the condition is having a whiter foot than normal due to the constant wetness. This is where infection and bad foot odor come to rise. Due to feet sweating and the warm moist environment that creates within your shoes, it then leads to the growth of bacteria. If the bacteria is left to grow unchecked it leads to very smelly feet that can be so bad it will clear a room.

How To Prevent Sweaty Feet

So, follow these simple steps below for tips on how to avoid sweaty feet:

  • Good hygiene is the key. The most important thing to prevent a bad situation from getting worse is to was your feet regularly with antibacterial soap.
  • Just as important as washing is the drying process; be sure to dry thoroughly (in between toes especially) with a towel or even a hair dryer
  • Try using a foot powder or some type of antifungal powder which will absorb the moisture.
  • Try to let your feet breathe as much as possible, so no wearing socks around the house unnecessarily. If you have cold tiles or laminate, wear open toe slippers instead of socks.
  • If possible try to wear open toe shoes and sandals when sneakers aren’t required, for an increased airflow.
  • Whether you’re wearing purpose built shoes for walking, or perhaps you are the loyal and proud owner of some top notch running shoes, make sure they have plenty of ventilation. This is one of the key points, which will stop them from sweating excessively.
  • Wear synthetic blend or similar socks because they help wick moisture away as opposed to cotton, which although is naturally hypoallergenic, tends to soak up the sweat like a sponge and trap or somewhat exacerbate the condition.
  • If none of the above work, make an appointment to see your doctor or podiatrist, they can prescribe antiperspirant which may help.