Diabetes Foot Care
When you have
diabetes, proper foot care is very important. Poor foot care may lead to amputation of a foot or leg.
As a person with
diabetes, you are more vulnerable to foot problems, because diabetes can damage your nerves and reduce blood flow to your feet. The American Diabetes Association estimates that one in five people with diabetes who seek hospital care do so for foot problems. By taking proper care of your feet, most serious health problems associated with diabetes can be prevented. Your doctor will check your feet each year for any problems.
Diabetes is a serious disease that can cause debilitating nerve pain.
Here's some helpful information:
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Here are some
diabetes foot care tips to follow.
Wash and Dry Your Feet Daily
Use mild soaps
Use warm water
skin dry; do not rub. Thoroughly dry your feet. After washing, use lotion on your feet to prevent cracking. Do not put lotion between your toes.
Examine Your Feet Each Day
Check the tops and bottoms of your feet. Have someone else look at your feet if you cannot see them.
Check for dry, cracked skin.
blisters, cuts, scratches, or other sores. Check for redness, increased warmth, or tenderness when touching any area of your feet.
Check for ingrown
toenails, corns, and calluses. If you get a
blister or sore from your shoes, do not "pop" it. Apply a bandage and wear a different pair of shoes.
Take Care of Your Toenails
toenails after bathing, when they are soft. Cut
toenails straight across and smooth with a nail file. Avoid cutting into the corners of toes.
Do not cut cuticles.
You may want a podiatrist (foot doctor) to cut your toenails.
Be Careful When Exercising
exercise in comfortable shoes. Do not
exercise when you have open sores on your feet.
Protect Your Feet With Shoes and Socks
Never go barefoot. Always protect your feet by wearing shoes or hard-soled slippers or footwear.
Avoid shoes with high heels and pointed toes.
Avoid shoes that expose your toes or heels (such as open-toed shoes or sandals). These types of shoes increase your risk for injury and potential infections.
Try on new footwear with the type of socks you usually wear.
Do not wear new shoes for more than an hour at a time.
Change your socks daily.
Look and feel inside your shoes before putting them on to make sure there are no foreign objects or rough areas.
Avoid tight socks.
Wear natural-fiber socks (cotton, wool, or a cotton-wool blend).
Wear special shoes if your
health care provider recommends them. Wear shoes/boots that will protect your feet from various weather conditions (cold, moisture, etc.).
Make sure your shoes fit properly. If you have
neuropathy ( nerve damage), you may not notice that your shoes are too tight. Perform the "footwear test" described below.