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.   


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