If you've recently been diagnosed with diabetes, your doctor has probably given you a long list of instructions regarding your diet and the insulin you'll be using. However, you might not have been given instructions on how to care for your feet.
You might be wondering what your feet have to do with diabetes. Studies have shown that Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are associated with several different foot diseases including peripheral artery disease and peripheral neuropathy. Here are some simple ways to help you avoid diabetic foot problems.
Inspect Your Feet
You probably see your feet a couple times each day. But, do you really look at them? They could be trying to tell you something. When you have diabetes, you should inspect your feet once a day.
Use a mirror to look at the bottom of your feet. You should be looking for signs of injury, color changes, and ingrown toenails. If you notice any of those issues, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor – especially if you see signs of infections, such as redness or oozing sores.
Keep Your Feet Clean
Even if you shower or bathe each day, you should still give extra attention to your feet. Use a wash basin or large bowl to soak your feet each night. Fill the basin with warm water and wash your feet with a mild soap. Be sure to carefully wash between your toes and around the nail bed. Those are two places where germs and bacteria can hide. Once you've washed your feet, dry them with a soft towel.
You want to keep the skin on your feet from getting chapped and dry. Callouses can lead to cracks on the heels of your feet. Those cracks can become infected if left untreated. Apply a generous amount of moisturizing lotion to your feet each night. This will help keep your skin smooth and hydrated.
Always Wear Shoes
You never know what's on the ground. One wrong step and you could end up with an injury to your foot. Unfortunately, when you have diabetes, sores don't always heal properly. To protect your feet, keep shoes on when you're awake – even in your own home. According to research, someone loses a limb to diabetes, every 30 seconds. The same study shows that people with diabetes are 10 times more likely to require amputation due to foot wounds.
If you have diabetes, you need to protect your feet. The list provided above will help you give your feet the care they need. For more information, contact a professional like those Camden County Foot & Ankle Center.
A few weeks ago, my wife made me go to the nail salon with her. Instead of sitting around for hours while my wife perused nail decals and polish options, I decided to get a pedicure. It was a really relaxing experience, but I quickly discovered that the process was about more than a foot bath. Before I knew it, someone was cutting and sanding my toenails. Unfortunately, a few days later I developed a massive ingrown toenail infection, which my podiatrist attributed to my visit to the nail salon. I want everyone to know how to properly care for their feet, so I made this website.