Kick the habit campaigns typically focus on lung and heart health, but smoking affects your whole body – even your feet! Quitting smoking can have great benefits from your head all the way to your toes.
The tar, nicotine, and other chemicals in cigarettes have many known adverse effects on your body. One of those is peripheral arterial disease, or PAD, which means your blood vessels have hardened. This hardening slows down blood flow, making it hard for cuts or sores in your extremities to heal. This slowed healing process often comes with infection, and for diabetic patients whose blood flow is already compromised, this can be very scary. We encourage all of our patients to quit smoking here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers, but it is a must for our diabetic patients.
Are you a smoker who is worried about your feet? Here are the signs and symptoms of PAD:
- Pain in your legs after walking, relieved by resting
- Pain in your legs at rest due to poor circulation
- Poorly healing wounds on your feet
- Blood vessel injury on feet
- Discoloration of toes and feet
If you have these symptoms, contact us today to schedule a PAD vascular testing appointment.
If you’ve been diagnosed with PAD, follow these steps to avoid complications:
- Wash your feet daily with warm water and a mild soap. Dry well.
- Apply lotion to keep your skin soft.
- Trim toenails straight across, keeping the edges rounded to avoid ingrown toenails.
- Always wear shoes and socks to avoid cuts on your feet.
- Check your feet daily for sores, cuts, bruises, or other issues.
If you’re a smoker who has noticed changes in your feet, make an appointment today at one of our six conveniently located locations. Our expert team of foot doctors maintain the highest level of accreditation and stay abreast of ongoing trends in podiatry. If you need help quitting smoking, we’re always here for advice on that as well.