Diabetes is a threat to your feet as it causes several foot problems. It reduces the amount of blood flowing to your feet thus preventing circulation of oxygen and nutrients to the feet. In case you have sores, cuts and blisters then it will hardly heal. You may also suffer from nerve damage commonly known as peripheral neuropathy which makes your feet to be numb and may cause pain. Getting blisters and cuts may lead to the development of sores and infections since you can’t feel your feet and by the time you realize, it may be too late. This may even lead to amputation.
However, taking good care of your feet helps prevent any foot problems if diabetic. Best ways of taking good care of your feet include:
- Check your feet regularly
It is good to check your feet daily and carefully to help you detect any problem. Ensure to check in between your toes daily since infections and blisters often originate from there and it is important it is detected early to avoid severe damage. Regular checking also helps prevent diabetic neuropathy.
- Use warm water to wash your feet
Wash them every day using warm water. Use your elbow to check on water temperature to avoid using hot water. Do not soak them in water for long for waterlogged sores often takes time to heal. Ensure to dry them thoroughly not forgetting between your toes.
- Put on fitting shoes
Wearing fitting diabetic shoes is very important to avoid rubbing or unfitting shoes which often leads to developing blisters which become sores which are hard to heal due to severe infections. When buying shoes, make sure the seams are smooth and there are no sharp edges. Wear diabetic socks for extra cushioning and check for any objects before wearing them.
- Avoid walking barefoot
Wear slippers or shoes with socks to avoid irritation of the skin which may cause blisters. Avoid thin socks or knee highs since it may not protect your heels enough. Ensure that your sicks are thick for extra cushioning from calluses or sores.
- See the doctor in case of foot changes
When you notice any change in your foot such as numbness, needles feeling, pain, tingling or other signs that are unusual to prevent nerve damage on time. Failure to seek medical help early may lead to amputation when the problem has become already severe.
- Ensure your feet are dry and stay soft
High levels of glucose make your skin to dry and crack hence bacteria can easily get under the cracks causing infections that are hard to heal. Use moisturized lotion on the skin and not between the toes. Make sure the feet are not damp to prevent sores.
The best and healthiest exercise routine to engage in include cycling, swimming, and yoga since it has a minimal impact on the feet. Always seek a doctor’s opinion on the best exercise for you.
- Fix hammertoes, corns, and bunions
A hammertoe is a buckled-under toe that nerve damage that weakens the muscle. Corn is a spot of a rough and thick skin caused by too much rubbing. A bunion, on the other hand, is when your big toe slant towards other toes causing a big bump on the big toe. Seek help from a podiatrist in fixing these to prevent pain and discomfort when wearing shoes.
- Use fitting orthotics
Orthotics are shoe inserts which provide extra support for your feet, especially when your muscles are weakened or you have nerve pain. If the pain is severe, orthopedic shoes or foot brace will help ease the pain. Your podiatrist will advise you on what is best.
- Blood sugar control
In order to prevent nerve pain, ensure your blood sugar is well managed. The best way to control blood glucose is with an intensive insulin therapy since it has been experimented and found out to lower pain, tingling or peripheral neuropathy. How you control blood sugar and how long you’ve had diabetes determines if you will get diabetic neuropathy. To prevent this, avoid smoking, control blood fats and pressure.
To reduce diabetic nerve pain, make sure to control the level of glucose in your blood. This can be achieved by good dieting and exercising. Medications prevent peripheral neuropathy as well as reducing its effects. Make sure that your feet are checked by the doctor more often to prevent or detect any foot problems on time.
Poor circulation due to high blood pressure can result in damage to your nerves. To increase blood circulation and ensure pain is reduced, you can buy a foot massager to help your legs relax.
The diabetic foot challenge is a common problem for most people living with diabetes. The article has offered you with valuable data to help keep your foot health.