With proper management, people with diabetes can enjoy their lives without major setbacks. However, as many people know, diabetes can affect a patient’s health in any number of ways. Diabetic foot care is extremely important when it comes to an individual’s comfort, mobility, and overall quality of life. This is because people with diabetes are generally more susceptible to all types of infections.
Many foot injuries and ailments can lead to infection if left untreated. Because of this, routine foot care is very important for those with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. If you’re unsure what to expect from diabetic foot care, this article should give you a clearer understanding.
Keeping Track of Diabetic Foot Pain
When managing diabetes, looking out for any type of foot pain, just like diabetic wounds, is very important. Many doctors recommend that diabetes patients closely inspect their feet each day. If you notice any frequent or unexplained painful sensations, you should make a note of them. These sorts of diabetic foot pain can be an early indicator of nerve damage. If left unchecked, nerve damage can lead to a severe loss of sensation in the affected leg for diabetes patients.
It is also important to monitor your feet for any signs of infection, or change in appearance. Diabetic foot pain can sometimes be linked to foot deformities which can lead to changes in the shape of the foot arch or toes. This can cause severe discomfort and affect mobility later in life. Signs of infection on the feet should also be reported immediately. People with diabetes are more susceptible to all varieties of infection. Any redness in the skin, signs of rash, or other unexplained diabetic foot pain could be signs of infection. Ingrown toenails can also lead to infection, and should be taken seriously if you suffer from diabetes.
Diabetic foot ulcers are among the most severe conditions to monitor for when checking your feet. Diabetic foot ulcers often start as sores, marked by inflamed red skin on the feet. When left untreated, they can develop into ulcers, which are extremely painful and pose a serious health risk.
Diabetic Foot Care
Diabetic foot care, as we have mentioned, requires regular self-surveillance. But for the best all-around care, it helps to work with a knowledgeable podiatrist. Many podiatrists can offer great expertise in diabetic foot care, ranging from health and lifestyle tips to medical procedures.
In addition to checking your feet daily, there are several other basic at-home diabetic foot care habits recommended by podiatrists. The first is washing your feet thoroughly each day. This is the simplest measure anyone can take to prevent foot infections like athlete’s foot. When cutting your toenails, always cut in a straight line, rather than curved along with the shape of your toe. This is done to prevent the development of ingrown toenails.
Your daily footwear is also very important when it comes to diabetic foot care. To aid circulation and prevent injury or infection, you should always wear loose, supportive footwear. Footwear that is too tight can hurt your feet or reduce circulation without you realizing it. You should also try to keep your feet active and moving as much as possible.
Lastly, if you require diabetic foot care, even for a seemingly simple procedure, it is best to seek professional help. Even a small infection can pose a serious risk to diabetes patients. If you are in the Bay Area and require diabetic foot care, the staff at Diablo Foot & Ankle has the expertise to help you. Our team understands the unique health challenges faced by diabetics and knows what is required when it comes to diabetic foot care.
Common Podiatry Questions
What is a Podiatrist?
A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the foot and ankle.
What does a Podiatrist treat?
A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the medical and surgical care of the feet. They can treat conditions such as ingrown toenails, fungal toenails, bunions, hammertoes, and plantar fasciitis.
What’s the difference between a Podiatrist and Orthopedist?
A Podiatrist and Orthopedist are very similar to each other in many ways. They use most of the same tools and treat a lot of the same conditions. The main difference between the two is their medical training. Podiatrists are trained exclusively on the foot and ankle, whereas the Orthopedic is trained on the whole body with an additional year of training on the foot and ankle.