Chilblains can be a very frequent problem of the feet in colder environments. They are practically unknown in warmer environments. They are a painful response of the blood circulation in the toes after a foot is cold and are heated up too quickly. Due to this issue with the blood circulation not reacting, there is an inflamation related reaction that results in small red-colored and itchy lesions on the toes. As the problem becomes more persistent the skin takes on a painful darker discolouration as the waste elements accumulate.
The most effective management of chilblains is avoiding them. Firstly, use good hosiery and footwear so that the foot does not get too cool. In the event that the foot does become cold don't put it in from of a source of heat so that it gets warm too fast. The foot should be able to warm up gradually so the blood circulation has time to adapt to the changes in temperature. When a chilblain does develop it needs to be protected so that it will get better, particularly if the skin is damaged. Keep it covered to guard it from trauma from the shoe. Soothing chilblain creams may be used to stimulate the circulation and help remove the waste products which have accumulated in the skin which are creating the inflammation and congestion. Care also needs to be taken to avoid further chilblains developing, so the approaches that should be used to prevent them must be used even more. It is easy to get another one before the first one has healed up turning this into a chronic condition. If the local measures to take care of the chilblains don't help, there are some medicines a doctor may recommend that can be used to open up the circulation. The drugs are not specific to the feet and work everywhere, so may be reserved for the more serious cases. In the very most severe cases, it is not unusual that they can be given advice to move and live in warmer environments.