Over 34 million people in America have diabetes. It can affect many different parts of the body. It is associated with severe complications such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-limb amputation, and more. It is the leading cause of limb loss, affecting over 65,000 people annually. A foot ulcer precedes 85% of diabetes-related amputations. If you have diabetes, it is vital to keep your feet healthy by taking a step in the right direction.
Diabetes and the Feet
Diabetes can reduce the blood flow to your feet and cause nerve damage. This makes healing take longer and also causes numbness. Reduced blood flow and numbness mean you lose the feeling in your feet, making it harder to tell when they have been injured. Blisters, sores, and calluses that are left untreated can lead to foot ulcers. Diabetes is the leading cause of non-traumatic amputations of the foot, toe, or leg. Over half of these cases could have been prevented with daily foot care.
Daily Foot Care Tips
A podiatrist specializes in conditions of the feet and ankles. They can also work with you to find a foot care plan that covers your needs. If you cannot feel your feet properly, even trimming your toenails can lead to severe issues. A podiatrist can help you with that. Other daily tips to keep your feet healthy are:
- Take time to sit down and examine your feet daily to watch for any calluses, cuts, sores, blisters, red spots, and swelling. For feet bottoms, use a handheld mirror.
- Wash your feet daily with warm water. Test temperature with your hands or elbows. You should not soak your feet. Don’t forget in between the toes and dry them well.
- Wear shoes and socks at all times.
- Ask your primary care doctor to check your feet each visit.
- Elevate feet when sitting, and don’t cross legs for long periods.
- Protect your feet from hot and cold by wearing appropriate shoes that fit. Do not use heating pads or bottles on your feet.
Diabetes Glandular Disease Clinic
If you’re looking for better diabetic care or want to help advance the future of diabetes treatments, let our clinic here at DGDC take care of you. Our diabetes care services include educational services, nutritional counseling, continuous blood glucose monitoring, weight loss clinic, and more, all under one roof! To learn more about our diabetes research studies or how you can get the best diabetic care in the Alamo City, call (210) 614-8612, or visit our website.