Posts for tag: Diabetes
Summertime brings flip-flops, pool time and more. While these are the signs of enjoyable warm weather, they can also be concerning if you have diabetes. Higher temperatures and opportunities to walk barefoot increase the chances you can injure your feet or experience cracking, swelling and discomfort.
Because you are living with diabetes, you likely know the condition puts you at greater risk for nerve damage to your feet. This affects your foot sensations, meaning you may experience a scrape or cut without realizing you had it. Because diabetes affects your body’s wound healing time, having a cut that’s unknown to you can easily turn into a more serious wound if left untreated.
To ensure your feet have an event-free summer, here are some warm weather-specific tips from our podiatrist.
Always wear shoes. If you’re planning a beach vacation, it can be tempting to leave the flip-flops behind in favor of sand beneath your toes. This can be a troublesome habit, however, because it increases your risk for cuts from seashells, beach glass or other unknown beach items. Close-toed beach shoes that have breathable mesh and a protective sole are available that protect your feet from injury while also allowing you to walk comfortably.
Give your feet a once-over twice daily. When you have diabetes, you should inspect your feet at least as often as you should brush your teeth: at least twice per day. Pay special attention to the areas between your toes and underneath your feet. You may even want to get a mirror to place on the ground and put your foot a few inches away to identify hard-to-see areas. In addition to checking out your feet, you’ll also want to check out your shoes. Debris, such as dirt and rocks, can easily accumulate in your shoes and cause injuries. Give them a good shake before wearing to protect yourself.
Don’t forget to apply sunscreen. You can just as easily burn your foot skin as you can anywhere else, yet many people forget to apply sunscreen to this important area. When you are applying sunscreen to your arms, legs and face, don’t forget to apply it on the tops and bottoms of your feet before putting on your outdoor shoes.
Don’t feel the burn. Remember the beach isn't the only place you can burn or injure your feet. Campfires, cookouts and even ultra-hot pavement are all areas where you can unexpectedly injure your feet in the summer. The same rules apply when it comes to wearing shoes and taking every precaution to protect your feet.
Finally, remember that it’s important to see a podiatrist regularly to inspect your feet and ensure you have not experienced an injury that could easily affect your overall health. Visiting our podiatrist to have your toenails cut can help to prevent ingrown toenails and injury. If you notice other foot conditions, such as blisters or scrapes, seeing us as quickly as possible can help to prevent your injuries from worsening.
It is important to raise awareness for diabetes, but what does that mean for your feet? If you have diabetes, you may understand the importance of proper care and maintenance of your blood sugar levels. However, did you know that the health of your feet directly relate to your diabetes as well?
Your podiatrist understands the importance of diabetic foot care, which is why they continue to raise awareness for the importance of proper diabetic foot care. Your podiatrist is available to provide you with some helpful tips for caring for your feet if you suffer from diabetes. Let’s take a look at some helpful tips.
The 5 Helpful Tips for Diabetic Foot Care
The importance of understanding how to care for your feet, whether you have diabetes or not, can't be underestimated. Here are the top 5 tips your podiatrist wants to emphasize for diabetic foot care:
- Inspect Your Feet Daily – When it comes to your feet, daily inspection is vital in the maintenance of your health. Even the smallest prick can cause immense pain and infection.
- Wash Your Feet in Lukewarm Water – Do not wash your feet in ice cold water or scalding hot water, as these can cause harm to your feet. When washing, remember to use lukewarm water so that you do not irritate your feet.
- Cut Your Nails Carefully – By taking care when you cut your nails, you can prevent ingrown toenails, while also preventing cuts or other complications. Make sure to cut your nails straight across, rather than curved or at an angle.
- Never Treat Corns or Calluses Yourself – We all know how tempting it can be to perform home surgery on your corns or calluses, but please refrain from doing so! By attempting to treat your corns or calluses, you are putting the health of your feet at risk for infection and other complications.
- Take Care of Your Diabetes – This tip may seem like an obvious one, but we cannot reiterate it enough—take care of your diabetes. If you properly care for your diabetes, you are paving the way for health and success.
By following these guidelines laid out by your podiatrist, we hope that you will continue to take care of your feet. If you have diabetes, constant monitoring of your feet is very important. Remember to look for puncture wounds, bruises, pressure areas, redness, warmth, blisters and ulcers, and to contact us immediately if you notice any of these things.
Inspect Your Feet Regularly
Small Foot Problems Can Lead to Bigger Problems
- Ulcers that don’t heal
- Cracked heels
- Ingrown toenails
Keep Your Feet Healthy with Proper Foot Hygiene
- Wash your feet daily with lukewarm water and mild soap, making sure to dry them thoroughly, especially between the toes.
- Keep the skin on your feet smooth and soft by applying a non-irritating moisturizer, avoiding the areas between the toes. Doing so can help prevent cracks and sores that lead to infection.
- Avoid ingrown toenails than can get infected by keeping them neatly trimmed straight across.
- Wear clean, dry socks and change them every day.
- Avoid walking barefoot to protect feet from harmful foreign particles.
- Never attempt to remove corns, calluses or other sores from your feet on your own. See your podiatrist for safe and pain-free removal.