Diabetic Foot Care
Our Goal is to Work with you to Keep Your Feet Healthy
Diabetes can lead to many foot and ankle complications because high blood sugars can affect your nerves/sensation, your blood flow/circulation, and your body’s ability to fight infection. These complications can include: skin changes, nail changes, foot pain, non-healing ulcerations, foot infections, amputations, numbness/tingling, painful neuropathy, and destructive arthritis (Charcot). Controlling your blood sugars and lowering your HbA1c can decrease your risk of complications!
How often do I need have my feet checked?
It is recommended to have you feet checked in a foot health screening by a Podiatrists at least once a year minimum, however, depending on your feet and level of risk your doctor may suggest more frequent check ups, especially if you have a history of diabetic foot complications .
Do I need to have my nails trimmed by a doctor?
For many diabetics it is recommended to have a health care professional cut/trim/debride your toenails. For patients with poor circulation (peripheral vascular disease) and/or decreased sensation (neuropathy) who have a higher risk of slow healing wounds and foot infections it is recommended to have a doctor cut your nails. Your doctor can help you decide if you a safe to cut your own nails during you foot health screening.
What is Diabetic Neuropathy?
Diabetic Neuropathy is a type nerve damage caused by high blood sugars in diabetes that can lead to many different symptoms and problems including numbness, tinging, burning, and pins and needles feelings in the feet. The severity can range from occasional pins and needles in your toes a night, to loss of feeling to the feet, to severely painful and debilitating nerve pain.
What is Peripheral Vascular Disease?
Peripheral arterial disease is the restriction or decrease in blood flow to the arteries by narrowing or blockage of the blood flow. High blood sugars in diabetes affects the small blood vessels first such as the small blood vessels of the eyes, kidneys, and feet. The feet are at a high risk as there are many small blood vessels and they are furthest from the heart. This decrease in blood flow can lead to many complications such as weak thin skin, slow healing wounds, ulcers, and gangrene.
What can I do to keep my feet healthy at home?
Avoid walking barefoot, even in the house. For example, keeping a pair or house shoes or house slippers.
Take a moment to look at your feet each day, make sure they are not any new problems or changes to your feet.
Keep your skin moisturized. Use lotion or cream for your dry skin, but avoid the skin between your toes.
Keep your feet clean, wash your feet daily and dry them completely after, making sure to dry between your toes.
Wear clean, dry socks that do not have thick seams that could irritate your skin.