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Combatting Chilblains: Expert Advice from The Penicuik Podiatrist Clinic

Updated: Jan 12

Welcome to post on a common, yet often overlooked condition that affects many, especially during the colder months - chilblains. Here at The Penicuik Podiatrist Clinic, we're dedicated to helping our community in and around Penicuik understand, identify, and effectively treat this condition.

Chilblains are small, itchy, red patches that can appear on your feet after being exposed to cold temperatures. They can become increasingly uncomfortable, causing swelling, itching, and even blistering in more severe cases. It's a condition that's more common than you might think, especially in the colder, damp climate we experience here in Penicuik.

But what exactly causes chilblains? It's essentially your body's reaction to the cold. Your skin gets exposed first to extreme cold and then extreme heat. This is the reaction you can suffer from.

Identifying chilblains is the first step to dealing with it. You'll typically notice them after you've been in the cold and then warmed up quickly. The affected areas can be red, swollen, and incredibly itchy. Sometimes, they can even feel tender or painful to the touch.

Our approach is twofold: managing the current symptoms and preventing future occurrences. There is no real immediate treatment to deal with, it is more about management to get over the condition and then prevention to cause recurrence.

So prevention, is key. We advise keeping your feet warm and dry during cold weather. Avoid direct heat sources when warming up, as the sudden temperature change can trigger chilblains. Wearing warm, moisture-wicking socks and protective footwear is also crucial in prevention.

Our podiatrists, Kim Blair and Ying Peng, with over 30 years of combined experience, are experts in dealing with chilblains and other foot-related conditions. They recommend regular check-ups, especially for those who have suffered from chilblains before or have poor circulation, as these factors can increase your risk.

Remember, if you're experiencing ongoing symptoms of chilblains, it's important to seek professional advice rather than self-diagnosing and treating. Every case can be slightly different, and what works for one person might not work for another an it is easy to make the condition a lot worse. Do not for example use creams of any kind and do not expose the skin to sudden heat such as a hot water bottle.

If you're in the Penicuik area and are suffering from symptoms of chilblains, or if you want to learn more about how to prevent them, we're here to help. Don't let the discomfort of chilblains affect your daily life. Reach out to The Penicuik Podiatrist Clinic for expert treatment and advice. Our team is ready to provide you with the care you need to keep your feet healthy and comfortable, no matter the season.

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