Diabetic Foot Care

People with diabetes face a higher risk of foot problems than the rest of the population. This is often due to nerve damage that can prevent the person from feeling his or her feet properly, meaning that people with diabetes may not notice immediately when they have a cut, blister, or sore on their feet. If a person with dieabetes also has poor circulation or an impairment of the immune system, it may be very difficult for these types of injuries to heal.

Left untreated, a minor foot injury in a person with diabetes can lead to bacterial infection of the skin, muscles, connective tissues, and bones. The infection can become life-threatening if it spreads to the bloodstream, and because poor blood flow can make it difficult for antibiotics to reach the site of the infection, oftentimes the only treatment option is amputation of the foot or leg.

The good news is that these serious problems can usually be prevented with proper foot care. The following are some tips that can help people with diabetes keep their feet healthy:

  • Check your feet every day. Carefully inspect bare feet for red spots, cuts, swelling, and blisters. If you do discover any cuts or breaks in the skin, call your health care provider immediately.
  • Choose proper footwear. Wear comfortable shoes that fit well and protect your feet. Before wearing, check inside your shoes for wrinkles or small objects that may cause irritation.
  • Exercise regularly. If you are able, try to be physically active, as this can improve blood circulation. Plan your physical activity program carefully with your health care provider.
  • Avoid foot injuries. Never walk barefoot, especially outdoors, at the beach, or on pavement. Use caution before putting your feet into hot water so as to avoid burns.

Please note that the above information is intended for educational purposes only, and is not meant to replace a medical consultation. For diagnosis, treatment, or management of foot problems related to diabetes, please consult your physician, or click here to schedule an appointment with the licensed medical professionals at Medical & Foot Care Group.