Chilblains - What are they and how do you treat them?

Published: 07th April 2011
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Of all the infections that affect the feet, chilblains is generally found in people who live in cold countries. It is thought that they are directly attributed to poor circulation. Chilblains affects the toes and the feet and results in them becoming swollen, itchy and red. There are different factors that can cause chilblains:

- Bone marrow or connective tissue disorders
- Poor blood circulation
- Poor nutrition

When your feet are exposed to cold, the capillary beds in the skin get damaged which is the cause of the itching, inflammation and redness. Burning sensations on the feet that begin to turn red and end up purple is a common symptom of chilblains. It is also possible for the skin to break and an infection to develop. Although chilblains are said to be idiopathic in origin, they could be a manifestation of a medical condition that is more serious and investigating and treating them quickly is essential.

Chilblains treatment: There are different kinds of chilblains treatment. These include prescribed medication from doctors and also ointments, lotions and oils that can be used to treat chilblains. There are also ways to prevent chilblains from occurring and these are keeping the feet warm. This can be done by wearing woollen slippers and socks. However, it is important to stay away from direct heat like using hot showers and hot water bottles.

Symptoms of chilblains: The common symptoms of chilblains are:
- Inflammation of the skin on toes
- Redness of nose
- Inflammation of the skin on fingers
- Redness of skin
- Inflammation of the earlobe

Treatment for chilblains: With treatment, chilblains heal in a period of four weeks. During chilblains treatment, it is essential to keep the affected area warm and clean. Scratching must be avoided by using a suitable anti-itching cream, powder or oil.

Studies have shown that approximately 1 out of every 10 Brit's suffer from chilblains due to the poor blood circulation in their fingers and toes. For the prevention of chilblains, it is essential to improve the circulation to the fingers and toes. It is commonly seen in winter and you must keep yourself adequately warm by wearing gloves and other protective clothes.

A good diet and regular exercise help in maintaining the overall health of your body and prevent chilblains. Products used in chilblains treatment are available online and can be easily ordered.

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