Happy Valentine’s Day! There’s no better day than this one to declare we’re sweet on feet! The connection between Valentine’s Day and chocolate provides us with the perfect segue to talk about the link between diabetes and foot care.
People with diabetes are more vulnerable to leg and foot problems because diabetes can damage your nerves (neuropathy) and reduce blood flow to your feet. One in five people with diabetes who seek hospital care do so for foot problems. The most serious health problems can be prevented by taking proper care of your feet.
Proper foot care – what you should and should not do
- Inspect feet daily for changes and breaks in skin. Redness, swelling, sores, bleeding, numbness or tingling all need to be addressed by a health professional.
- Wash feet daily with mild soap and water. Test the water temperature with elbow to avoid burns. Dry thoroughly especially between toes.
- Apply moisturizer to prevent cracks and dry damaged skin. (not to be applied between toes)
- Always wear footwear to prevent trauma. Check inside the shoes every time you put them on since even a small stone or uneven insole can cause serious wounds.
- Utilize white cotton socks that are smooth with no rough seams. White socks will allow early detection of wound discharge or bleeding.
- Make sure toes nails are cut straight across and are even with the end of your toes.
You should not
- Use heating pads, hot water bottles or thermal packs. Insensitive feet can be badly burned.
- Cut corns, calluses or ingrown nails. This can cause potential infections.
- Use medicated corn pads. They can cause ulcers in diabetic feet.
- Wear tight socks, garters, panty hose, shoes or any other clothing which restricts blood flow to your feet.
- Smoke. Tobacco impairs blood circulation.
To learn more about diabetic footcare. Be sweet on your feet! Make your diabetic footcare appointment today!