Posts for tag: diabetic foot care
Diabetes affects more than just your blood sugar levels—for diabetics everywhere, proper foot protection and care is of the utmost importance for retaining overall health and safety.
The consequences of neglecting diabetic feet can be extreme, but fortunately, your foot doctor, Daniel J. Roche, DPM of Roche Podiatry Group in both Edison and Woodbridge, NJ, can help keep you in the best of health. Read on to learn more!
How does diabetes affect my feet?
For individuals with diabetes, nerve damage can take away your ability to feel pain/discomfort in your feet, making you unable to detect things like a rock in your shoe or stepping on a sharp object. This can then create cuts, sores, and ingrown toenails that may all lead to infection.
Additionally, because diabetes causes a reduction of blood flow to your feet, foot wounds are far more susceptible to slow or disrupted healing. In extreme cases, sores combined with poor circulation can cause gangrene, a condition in which skin tissue darkens and dies. In such a case, the foot, toe, or even a portion of the leg will likely require amputation.
What are the signs of unhealthy feet?
You may not be properly caring for your diabetic feet if you are experiencing thickening or yellowing toenails, a tingling or burning sensation, numbness, or repeated blisters, sores, or infected corns.
How do I care for my diabetic feet?
In addition to seeing your foot doctor in Edison and Woodbridge for regular exams and at the first sign of infection, it is important to take the following steps and precautions:
- Inspect your feet daily for any injuries, cuts, swelling, pus, or inflammation
- Moisturize your feet, avoiding the tight area between your toes where fungus can grow when moisture is trapped
- Cut your toenails straight across, taking care not to cut them too short
- Clean your feet gently in lukewarm water and dry thoroughly
- Keep your feet, and socks, dry and wear socks to bed if your feet get cold
- Abstain from smoking and maintain a healthy diet
- Wear shoes at all times, including indoors
- Wear properly fitting shoes, and make sure there are no foreign objects like pebbles inside before putting them on
If you have any concerns about the health of your diabetic feet, your foot doctor in Edison and Woodbridge is just a call away at 908-753-0500.
For people with diabetes, even minor foot problems like blisters or ingrown toenails can lead to potentially serious complications. Dr. Daniel Roche, a foot doctor in Edison and Woodbridge, NJ, advises diabetic patients to practice regular self-care and monitoring at home for signs of any problems and to schedule regular appointments for maintenance like safely trimming the toenails.
A condition known as diabetic neuropathy can increase the risk of developing serious infections and complications from otherwise common foot problems. Neuropathy (nerve damage) is common in people with diabetes and affects approximately half of all people with diabetes according to the American Diabetes Association. Poor circulation/blood flow to the feet and nerve damage make diabetics more vulnerable to ulcers and can make it harder for infections and injuries to heal.
Diabetic Footcare Tips and Recommendations
Keeping your feet clean and dry and the toenails neatly trimmed is especially important with diabetes. To avoid ingrown toenails, make sure that the toenails are cut evenly across, and avoid sharp or jagged edges. For best results, schedule an appointment with a foot doctor to make sure your nails are trimmed and cut properly. Other tips to keep your feet healthy include:
- Wash and completely dry your feet every day
- Wear clean socks and comfortable, supportive shoes that fit well
- Avoid going barefoot
- Keep the skin on your feet moisturized (but do not apply lotion between the toes)
- Avoid extremes in temperature, like walking on hot sand or dipping the feet in extremely hot or cold water
- Keep the circulation flowing to your feet by engaging in appropriate physical activity and exercises
- Avoid smoking
- Maintain healthy blood sugar levels
- Let your podiatrist know if you notice any changes or develop ulcers or blisters
For more information on how to care for your feet and lower your risk of infections and diabetes-related complications, contact Dr. Daniel Roche at Roche Podiatry Group with locations in Edison and Woodbridge, NJ. Call (908) 753-0500 to schedule your appointment at the Edison location and (732) 636-8500 to schedule your appointment at the Woodbridge location today!