//The Steps You Need To Take To Prevent Diabetes Foot Problems

The Steps You Need To Take To Prevent Diabetes Foot Problems

When we think about the ways diabetes can affect our health, we may not consider our feet. Yet serious foot problems and damage are real risks.

One of the biggest dangers facing those with diabetes is diabetic neuropathy, or nerve damage.

While diabetic neuropathy can produce uncomfortable tingling and even pain, the biggest harm comes from losing feeling. If you can’t feel your feet, you don’t know when something is harming them. This can lead to scrapes, burns, infections, injuries, etc.

Blood flow is problem #2. When you don’t have proper circulation, infections or injuries can take longer to heal. If it doesn’t heal, gangrene is a real possibility, which can even lead to amputation.

A rarer, but possible, issue is Charcot’s foot, which can completely alter the shape of your foot and create a “rocker bottom.”

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent these issues. Here’s what everyone with diabetes needs to do for their feet:

1. Look At Your Feet

You need to examine your feet daily. Those with diabetic neuropathy may not feel injuries, burns, bumps, or rashes – so you need to look for these problems. Plus, infections and Charcot’s foot can display early warning signs that will be the difference between saving your foot and losing your foot.

Don’t forget to look for redness, swelling, warm spots, cuts, blisters, athlete’s foot, or signs of toenail infections. When you notice anything at all, see your doctor right away.

You need to examine your feet daily. Those with diabetic neuropathy may not feel injuries, burns, bumps, or rashes – so you need to look for these problems. Plus, infections and Charcot’s foot can display early warning signs that will be the difference between saving your foot and losing your foot.

Don’t forget to look for redness, swelling, warm spots, cuts, blisters, athlete’s foot, or signs of toenail infections. When you notice anything at all, see your doctor right away.

2.Take Care of Your Feet

You have to take care of your feet when you have diabetes. Poor foot care may lead to amputation of a foot or leg. Your doctor will check yours each year for problems. If you take good care of your feet, you can prevent most serious problems related to diabetes.

Wash and Dry Your Feet Daily

Use mild soaps and warm water.

Pat your skin dry; do not rub. Thoroughly dry your feet.

After washing, put lotion on them to prevent cracking. But not between your toes!

3. Wear Your Shoes and Socks

When you can’t feel your feet, protection is your friend.

Wearing shoes all the time is essential. When barefoot, you could step on something sharp and cut your foot or step on something hot and burn your foot – all without knowing it happened. Never wear your shoes without socks, otherwise you could get blisters that can become sores.

You may need special shoes depending upon your condition. Your podiatrist can order them for you.

4. Encourage Your Blood Flow

Not all forms of exercise are acceptable for those with diabetes, so run any potential exercise regimen by your regular doctor and podiatrist.

Blood flow tips safe for most people include:

· Elevating your feet when you sit

· Wiggling your toes frequently

· Stopping the cigarettes

5. Visit Your Podiatrist

Everyone with diabetes must include a good podiatrist in their medical team.

If you have diabetes and haven’t seen a podiatrist (or haven’t gone in a long time), the time is now. Make an appointment today. And, of course, if you notice any issues at all, see your doctor immediately – it could literally save your feet.

Sources: https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/preventing-problems/foot-problems

https://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/neuropathy/steps-to-prevent-or-delay.html

By |2018-01-20T17:00:07+00:00January 20th, 2018|
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