If you have diabetes, foot care should become part of your every-day routine. An ulcer might seem benign to someone without diabetes, but we’ve seen firsthand how often they can lead to big trouble for our diabetic patients. Research from the American Podiatric Medical Association shows that 15% of diabetics suffer from ulcers and that ulcers put 6% of diabetics in the hospital. These infections occasionally lead to amputation of a foot or limb. Podiatry experts have said that ulcers and amputation are preventable.
These tips along with regularly scheduled visits to your podiatrist at Connecticut Foot Care Centers will help minimize the chance of foot complications for diabetic patients:
- Do daily checks. Get a mirror down under your feet to check for cuts, bruises, blisters, or punctures. Ulcers typically start on the sole of your feet, so be sure to check there daily. Don’t forget between your toes!
- Check for feeling. Run a blunt object along the bottom of your foot to ensure feeling persists. Nerve damage is common in diabetics and can lead to wounds going untreated.
- Keep your feet clean and dry. Wash your feet daily with mild soap and warm water. After you’re done, dry them thoroughly with a soft towel. Ulcers are less likely to develop on clean, dry feet.
- Trim your nails properly. Cut your nails straight across, but never too short. Curved nails can dig into the sides of your toes and create painful ingrown toenails.
- Properly dress your feet. Ensure your shoes fit your foot right. Too-tight or too-loose shoes can squeeze or cause rubbing and friction. Clean dry socks will naturally keep your feet clean and dry too. Bring an extra pair with you and change during the day if you need to.
- Manage your diet well. Follow the recommended dietary guidelines that your doctor laid out for you. Regularly check your glucose levels to ensure you’re in good standing.
- Quit smoking and cut back on drinking. Smoking constricts your blood vessels and alcohol can accelerate nerve damage. Either of these scenarios can lead to infections, ulcers, or other health complications.
A good relationship with your podiatrist is also a necessity if you have diabetes. Our knowledgeable foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers can help get you on a path to foot health. Click here to schedule an appointment or call one of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices today!