Anyone with diabetes, regardless of age, must take good care of their feet. This is because diabetes can lead to nerve damage, which can cause you to lose all the feeling in your feet. If you can’t feel pain, you may not notice a small cut or blister that becomes infected.
Also, with diabetes, the blood flow to your feet may be reduced. This makes it even more difficult for infections – even small ones – to heal.
Individuals with diabetes are also at a higher risk of wounds that don’t heal, fractures, infections, and amputations. While this is true, there are steps you can take to keep your feet healthy. Keep reading to learn what those tips are.
Look at Your Feet Every Day
Remember, you are your best defense for diabetic foot infections or wounds. If you notice blisters, cuts, swelling, or any other type of injury, it’s a good idea to apply a bandage and contact your doctor. If you can’t see your feet that well, ask someone to look at them for you.
Keep Your Feet Clean
It’s important to keep your feet clean by washing them with a cloth. Once you have washed them, dry them off and apply some cornstarch or talcum powder in between your toes. This will help ensure they remain dry.
It’s important to keep the skin on your feet balanced – not damp or overly dry. Never soak your feet either since this can cause the skin to dry out.
Use Unscented Lotion to Dry Your Feet
Moisturizing your feet will help you keep the skin healthy. It also helps prevent it from becoming overly dry. If your skin is dry, it may crack, which may allow an infection to set in.
Avoid Going Barefoot
If you go barefoot or only wear socks, you may step on something sharp without ever feeling it. You may also burn your feet on the hot asphalt if you are outside.
Wear Shoes That Fit Well
If you wear shoes that don’t fit properly, they may press and rub against your feet. This can result in calluses or blisters that cause infections.
For individuals with hammertoes or bunions, be sure you wear shoes that work with the shape of your foot.
Reducing the Risk of Complications with Your Feet
You can make a few lifestyle changes to help keep your feet healthy. These tips include:
- Avoid smoking which increases the risk of amputation
- Control your blood sugar and weight
- Engage in non-weight bearing exercises if you have experienced diabetic foot wounds in the past
If you want to avoid serious issues with your feet, it’s important to stay aware of their health and any issues you may have. If you suspect a problem, contact your doctor. They can evaluate your feet and figure out what to do to ensure they remain healthy and problem-free. Diabetes is a serious illness. It can impact you in many ways. Protecting your feet is just one way to maintain your health, well-being, and quality of life.