Momma always said, “If you take good care of your feet, they’ll take good care of you.” Of course, the reverse is also true. Feet are often overlooked, and if you don’t treat them right, you could wind up with some problems you didn’t expect.
This is all especially important if you have diabetes. The disease poses significant health risks for feet. These include a greater risk of wounds, broken bones, deformities, and complications that can even lead to surgical limb salvage attempt or outright amputation. But all of these negative outcomes are preventable if you take good care of your lower limbs! Here are five things you can do to treat your diabetic feet:
- Give feet a thorough inspection at least daily. You can’t always rely on pain or discomfort to alert you of a problem, so you may need to use your eyes and hands to detect cuts, corns, swelling, blisters, wounds, lumps, temperature changes, and other trouble spots.
- Keep them clean with a daily bath or shower, followed by a thorough drying and application of moisturizer. This minimizes your risk of toenail and skin infections.
- Protect your feet from injury. Comfortable, properly fitting, supportive shoes should be worn at all times, including at home. This defends against scratches and stubs, while also minimizing friction and pressure damage.
- Clip your toenails correctly. Cutting too short or curving from corner to corner increases the risk of an ingrown toenail, which can in turn lead to fungal toenails or another skin wound or infection.
- Know when it’s time to talk to your doctor. Skin breakdowns, especially those that are getting worse or not healing, should be referred to our office for treatment as soon as possible. You should also be visiting us yearly for a full diagnostic check-up. You definitely don’t want to take any unnecessary risks that could cost you your foot—and ultimately your mobility and independence.