The age old adage goes, ‘Before you judge a man, walk a mile in his shoes.’ If you plan on judging a nurse, though, make that 4 miles. Don’t believe me? Well then hash it out with MEDSURGE Nursing! A study involving 146 nurses, concluded that in a 12-hour shift nurses clock in an average of 4-5 miles. *Currently picking jaw up off of floor* And let’s just say that regular folk walk an average of 2.5-3 miles in an 18-hour day. Now while you might be grinning gleefully and feeling like you can now skip the gym and over indulge at lunch (I know, I know… what lunch??), I’m sorry to say that the kind of walking nurses do while at work, has minimal cardiac or stress relieving benefits. In fact, the crazy amount of walking nurses do, tends to lead to fatigue and reduced quality of patient care. While there are steps various institutions can take to reduce the amount of footsteps nurses and healthcare workers take, nurses will still have a statistically higher footstep rate per day than the average American. So in honor of National Foot Health Month, I present you, my dear nurses, with various ways to take care of your feet! Get a Pedicure
Get a Pedicure
For most, a pedicure is a luxury. When you’re on your feet all day long, though, it’s straight up self-care. Going for regular pedicures ensures that your toe nails remain neatly trimmed in order to prevent them from becoming ingrown, and besides, a great polish color, even one that’s hidden deep within your nursing clogs, can really put an added bounce to your step.
Invest in Compression Socks
Compression socks aren’t necessarily pretty, but they do a world of good for your feet. When you’re on your feet for the majority of the day you run the risk of your blood pooling in your legs due to gravity. In other words; swelling. Compression socks work to help circulate the blood in your legs. By squeezing the leg tissues and walls of the veins, it sends the blood back up to your heart. New Shoes Twice a Year
New Shoes Twice a Year
Just as cars have mileage, so do shoes. So be sure to replace yours every 6 months. Another helpful hint- Don’t be fooled by what the outside of your shoes look like. They may be in perfect condition at first glance, but remember- if the foam sole on the inside is totally compressed and unable to cushion your feet anymore, they are worthless. Good nursing shoes are definitely on the more expensive side, but they’re worth every penny. Certain things to keep in mind when purchasing nursing shoes for work, are comfort, support, stability, and breathability. You also want to make sure they have non-skid soles. Slipper Heaven
As soon as you get home take off those clogs and slip into the fuzziest, comfiest slippers you have. And if you don’t have, go buy! Super soft slippers are LIFE, and make everything better; study or no study;) Hot and Cold Water Therapy
Hot and Cold Water Therapy
Hydrotherapy uses water for pain relief and treatment. Particularly rough day at work? Didn’t manage to sit down even once? Do yourself a favor and soak your feet alternately in very hot and very cold water. This hydrotherapy stimulates circulation in your feet and results in a gentle tissue workout. Be sure to end with cold water, though, so as to prevent any swelling. Epsom Bath
So it wasn’t a crazy day and hydrotherapy isn’t completely necessary, but y’know… It’s always a long day when you’re on shift, which means you and your feet could use a little R&R once you get home. Right?? Fill a large bowl with warm water and add a cup of Epsom salt. The science behind it? The minerals work to reduce swelling, and the heat aids in circulation. To kick things up a notch, feel free to add chamomile, lavender, peppermint etc. Whatever suits your fancy! This is about YOU!!
No matter how busy you are please promise me you’ll take care of those feet of yours. It’s toe-tally a worthwhile investment. (Yes, I had to!) Happy National Foot Health Month!