Diabetes and Foot Problems

Foot problems tend to happen more often in people with diabetes than in those who do not have this disease.

According to the American Diabetes Association, anyone who is diabetic should check his or her feet every day and get medical help right away if a foot injury occurs. All diabetics should have their feet checked at least one time each year, and if they develop an ingrown toenail or any other problem, it is very important for them to see a doctor right away. Other foot conditions that require fast medical treatment include corns and calluses. Diabetics should wear shoes at all times to avoid injury to their feet. Most diabetes treatment plans include seeing a podiatrist, or foot specialist, if one has any problems with one's feet.

Precautions for Diabetics

Diabetics need to be extra careful with their feet because they may have some nerve damage in their legs or feet. This could keep them from feeling cuts or
another injuries on their feet. By the time that they do notice the wound or injury, it could already be infected and more difficult to treat.

To add to the problem, diabetics often have wounds that heal more slowly as a side effect of this disease. If the foot problem is not seen and treated right away, it can result in a serious infection that could require hospitalization or even amputation of the foot if the infection does not heal.

Some diabetics burn their feet by stepping into bath water that is too hot because they cannot feel the temperature accurately. It important to reach down with your hand and feel the water to see if it is safe to put your feet in it if you take baths instead of showers.

The best way to prevent foot problems is to manage your blood sugar level. Too much sugar in the body is often the source of foot problems in diabetics. The excess sugar is the cause of diabetic nerve damage, or neuropathy, which takes the feeling out of your feet and toes.

Healing Properly and Fighting Infection

Excess sugar in your body also prevents wounds from healing properly. Your body will function better when your glucose level is within your target range. Diabetes affects every cell in the body, including your feet.

When diabetics have problems with blood circulation, they are not able to fight off infections in a normal way. Blood vessels may narrow and harden, causing additional problems with sores or wounds on the feet healing.

Although walking and exercise are important for diabetics, it is important not to wear shoes that rub your feet and can cause sores. Also, if you do have a current foot problem, it is best not to walk until it heals so that your shoes do not rub on the wound.

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