Foot problems are common in people with diabetes. Maybe you’re afraid of losing a toe, a foot or a leg, or maybe you know someone who has been through that. However, you can reduce the likelihood of having problems with your feet with good daily foot care. Controlling blood glucose levels (blood sugar) can also help you keep your feet healthy.
How can we help you with this? Here at Happy Feet Pedorthics we’ll assist you in the selection of shoes for your daily routine. First of all, we will measure your feet in order to make your new shoes fir perfectly, then we will recommend the best and most comfortable design for you, ask for aesthetic preferences and present a brief view at what we will your new shoes look like.
How can diabetes affect the feet?
Over time, diabetes can cause nerve damage, which is also known as diabetic neuropathy, which can cause pain and a tingling sensation, and can make you lose sensation in your feet. When you lose feeling in your feet, you may not feel a pebble in your sock or a blister on your foot, which can cause cuts and sores. Cuts and sores can become infected.
Diabetes can also decrease the amount of blood flow in the feet. If you do not have enough blood flow in your legs or feet, it is harder for a sore or infection to heal. Sometimes, a severe infection of the nerves is never cured. The infection can cause gangrene.
If the gangrene and foot ulcers do not improve with the treatment, the toe, foot or part of the leg can be amputated. A surgeon can perform an amputation to prevent a serious infection from passing to the rest of the body, which could save your life. Good foot care is very important to prevent serious infections and gangrene.
Although it does not happen often, nerve damage from diabetes can cause deformation of the feet, such as Charcot’s foot. Charcot foot can start with redness, warmth and swelling. Then, the bones and toes begin to move or break, which causes the foot to take on a strange shape, like the “clubfoot”.
What can I do to keep my feet healthy?
Work with your health care team to create a personal diabetes care plan, consisting of an action plan on how to manage diabetes. The plan must include foot care. A podiatrist (foot specialist) and other specialists can be part of your health care team.
Include these steps in your foot care plan:
- Suggestions for foot care
- Check your feet every day.
- Wash your feet every day.
- Lightly wash calluses and calluses.
- Cut your toenails in a straight line.
- Always wear shoes and socks.
- Protect your feet from heat and cold.
- Help maintain blood flow in the feet.
- Ask to have your feet checked at each medical visit.
Check your feet every day
Maybe you have foot problems and do not feel pain. Checking your feet every day will help you find problems at an early stage before the problems get worse. A good way to remember it is by checking your feet every night when you take off your shoes. Also check the area between the toes. If you find it difficult to bend to see your feet, try using a mirror or ask someone to check them.
Watch for problems such as:
- Cuts, sores or red spots
- Swelling or blisters with fluid
- Ingrown nails, when the edges of the nails grow buried in the skin
- Corns and calluses, which are circular lesions of hardened skin caused by too much friction or pressure in the same place
- Plantar warts, which are flesh-coloured growths on the soles of the feet
- Athlete’s foot
- Hot areas on the feet
If you have certain foot problems that increase the likelihood of developing sores on your feet, your doctor may recommend that you take skin temperature on various parts of your feet. A “hot area” may be the first sign that a blister or ulcer is beginning to develop.
Wash your feet every day
Wash your feet with warm water (not hot) and soap. Feel the water temperature to make sure it is not too hot. You can use the elbow or a thermometer (between 90 ° and 95 ° F or between 32 ° and 35 ° C is a safe temperature) to feel the temperature of the water. Do not soak your feet because the skin will dry out.
After washing and drying your feet, put talc or corn starch between your toes. The skin between the toes tends to retain moisture. The powder will keep the skin dry, which will help prevent an infection.
Gently rinse corns and calluses
Thick layers of skin known as calluses or calluses may appear on the feet. If you have them, talk to your podiatrist about the best way to take care of these foot problems. If you have nerve damage, these layers can become ulcers.
If the doctor tells you to, use a pumice stone to file calluses and calluses after bathing or showering. Pumice is a type of rock that is used to file the skin. Rub it gently, in one direction, to avoid breaking the skin.
It is important that you DO NOT:
- Cut corns and calluses
- Use patches for corns, which are medicated pads
- Use liquid callus remover
- Products without a prescription or to cut or eliminate calluses can damage the skin and cause infections.
- To keep the skin soft, apply a thin layer of lotion, cream or petroleum jelly above and below the feet. Do not apply lotion or cream between your toes because moisture could cause an infection.
Remember that here at Happy Feet Pedorthics we can help you find the best option for you, we’ll assist you in the selection of shoes for your daily routine. Today we will help you find proper shoes for each member of the family. Contact us today!