Sock Selection Can Boost Your Foot and Ankle Health


We often focus on shoes when it comes to foot health, but socks play an equally important role. The right socks can prevent blisters, calluses, ulcers, plantar fasciitis, arch pain, and more, while the wrong ones can increase the likelihood of said problems.

Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center is here to help! Let’s explore how sock technology has evolved to address these concerns, one problem at a time, in the blog below.

Moisture Management

Friction between your skin and a damp sock is more than unpleasant; specifically, studies have shown that wet socks significantly increase your risk of blisters.

Some socks work far better than others to address the problem:

  • Acrylic: Offers decent moisture management and heat retention.
  • Wool: Absorbs moisture but retains some breathability.
  • Cotton: Absorbs moisture but doesn’t wick it away, leading to damp socks.

Aside from materials, design matters, too.

  • Seamless socks can reduce irritation and pressure points on the skin.
  • Double-layered socks can provide extra cushioning and blister protection.
  • Targeted padding in the forefoot and heel can absorb impact and reduce friction.

Fit and Function

Socks that are too loose can bunch and rub, while tight socks can restrict circulation. A well-fitting sock should conform to the contours of your foot without pinching or slipping.

Look for socks with features like:

  • Right and left-specific designs for a more anatomical fit.
  • Y-gore construction for a better heel fit and reduced blistering.
  • Sizing options to accommodate different foot shapes and volumes.

Compression Socks: Beyond Blister Prevention

While research is ongoing, compression socks may offer additional benefits like improved circulation, reduced muscle soreness, and enhanced proprioception (your body’s awareness of its position in space).

Antimicrobial Properties

  • Some socks incorporate antimicrobial materials like silver or copper to combat odor-causing bacteria.
  • New designs are also exploring the use of textured materials to stimulate nerve endings and potentially improve balance and proprioception.

Sock selection makes a difference! If any of the issues above sound familiar, get in touch with Your Next Step for expert recommendations and customized care.

Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, Dr. Aliza V. Eisen, and Dr. Cassandra Stache are ready to help you step forward pain-free. Schedule your appointment and contact us today!

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