Saturday, 23 March 2019

5 Foot Care Tips For Diabetics

Since diabetes causes nerve damage (diabetic neuropathy) that affects your feet and legs, a small cut or bruise may go unnoticed because you fail to feel it. Even when you develop a blister or sore, you may not notice it until the condition has worsened. Thus, even a small cut or bruise may have serious consequences – from becoming infected to turning up into a non-healing wound that may put you at the risk for amputation. This is why proper foot care is extremely important for diabetics. Here are five tips that can help you get started:

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1. Daily foot inspection:
Make sure to inspect your feet daily for swelling, blisters, cuts, redness or nail problems. You can use a magnifying glass to take a good look at the bottom of your feet and ensure you do not miss anything untoward. If you have trouble reaching, seeing, or checking your feet, you can ask a family member to help. In case you notice anything irregular or worrying, get in touch with your foot doctor without any further delay.

2. Keep your feet clean and use lukewarm water: You should keep your feet clean by washing them daily. However, use lukewarm warm and not very hot water as that may hurt and scald. Be gentle with your feet and do not scrub them vigorously. Ideally, you should use a sponge or a soft washcloth. Once you have washed your feet, make sure to dry them well, especially the regions between your toes. In case your feet sweat excessively, you may even apply an antiperspirant on the sole of your feet after you have washed and cleaned them.

3. Moisturize your feet: To ensure that the skin on your feet does not crack or itch, apply a thin coat of a moisturizing lotion daily on the top and bottom of your feet. However, do not moisturize between your toes because it could trigger a fungal infection. 

4. Clip your toenails: Cut your toenails straight across and use a nail file or an emery board to file the edges. Make sure to cut your nails every week or when required. However, take care not to cut them too short, as this may cause ingrown toenails. In case you have concerns about your nails or face problems while trimming, it is best to consult your doctor rather than buying over-the-counter medicines and playing the doctor yourself.

5. Manage your diabetes: Preventive measure is the best in most cases and it is no different for diabetics. To keep your feet healthy, your primary job is to keep your blood sugar within the accepted range. Additionally, you should schedule regular foot checkups with your podiatrist as an experienced professional with specialization in foot care is the best person to help prevent foot complications that are triggered by diabetes. 

You can take some additional steps like never walking barefoot (even inside your home), wearing socks that wick moisture away from your feet, checking the inside of your shoes before wearing them, and refraining from smoking to avoid serious foot problems.   

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Fighting Chronic RA Pain with these Tips

From a loss in appetite to complete fatigue, rheumatoid arthritis can have an effect on your life in so many different ways. However, one of the greatest side effects of RA is pain that limits mobility and life in general.

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1. Inflammation medication

When it comes to handling rheumatoid arthritis most pain-relief methods take the back seat to control inflammation. The best way, experts say, to control inflammation is by using DMARDs or disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. Such drugs work by suppressing the overactive immune system of the body and prevent joint damage by slowing down disease progression.

2. Pain medication

One of the best drugs to curb acute pain are anti-inflammatory nonsteroidal drugs. Ibuprofen and Aspirin are a part of this class, as is celecoxib. However, NSAIDs handle joint pain but do not prevent joint damage. Apart from this, NSAIDs may disturb the lining of the stomach which leads to kidney damage when utilized over time.

3. Diet

There are several foods and diets that are known to help rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. However, there is no solid evidence that special foods actually decrease RA pain. Experts still believe that omega-3 fatty acids reduce joint pain and inflammation. Omega-3 is found in fish oil supplements and cold-water fish. Those who take fish oil supplements regularly do not need strong pain medication.

4. Weight management

Keeping a healthy weight will assist you in managing joint pain more effectively. One of the studies published suggested that weight loss can help reduce the need for pain medication in those with rheumatoid arthritis.

5. Massage

A therapeutic massage can be a complementary and soothing treatment to assist you in reducing joint and muscle pain. A study was done involving people with RA who received medium to light massage from a therapist every week for one month. These participants also performed self-massage at home. The results, after one month, for those who received moderate-pressure had greater motion range and less pain.

6. Exercise

Most people feel it’s impossible to stay active with RA, with the misconception that any form of exercise will create stress. However, the truth is, gentle exercises can help in decreasing muscle and joint pain, too. Low-impact exercises have proved to be a great way for lowering pain. Experts suggest swimming, walking, and cycling.

7. Orthoses

These aids assist in protecting and supporting your joints. Some of the examples include, padded shoe insoles or braces that help in keeping the joints in aligned. You may even get the right gloves for finger and hand RA. A podiatrist is the best person to seek advice from as to which device is best.  

8. Hot and cold

Heat assists in relaxing the muscles, while cold compress assists in dulling the pain sensation. You will see that using ice packs or hot packs, or switching between cold and hot, helps decrease your joint pain. Taking a hot bath can also help relieve pain.

By following these tips, you are likely to see a difference in your RA pain and symptoms. It is also best to discuss the problem with a qualified podiatrist to get the best results.