For diabetics suffering from neuropathy, proper foot care is necessary to live a happy and healthy life.

Diabetic neuropathy is a type of nerve damage that can occur if you have diabetes. High blood sugar can injure nerve fibers throughout your body, but diabetic neuropathy most often damages nerves in your legs and feet.

If you are diabetic, you need to know how to take care of your feet!
If you are diabetic, you need to know how to take care of your feet!

This condition can manifest in both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics. In Type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce the insulin necessary to convert glucose into the energy that the body needs. Type 2 diabetes, which is far more common, occurs when the body is unable to use insulin properly.

It has been estimated that between 60 to 70 percent of diabetics will deal with some form of neuropathy in their lifetime, compared to only a 25 to 30 percent chance for non-diabetics.

For diabetics already living with neuropathy, or those who may deal with it in the future, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum of Delray Beach Podiatry has come up with several helpful tips to help keep your feet healthy:

Check your feet regularly: Regular foot checks are an increasingly essential part of diabetes management as nerve damage and reduced circulation caused by diabetes can lead to reduced awareness of pain and slower healing of the foot. Foot problems are one of the most common complications associated with diabetes and it’s important to check your feet daily for signs of damage in order to avoid future problems. In severe cases, poor foot care may lead to amputation of a foot or leg. In fact, even something as minimal as a blister or a sore could lead to an infection or a non-healing wound.

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Circulator Boot Therapy is a revolutionary treatment option for both diabetics and non-diabetics that can prevent amputations of the lower extremities, even in advanced cases where surgery has already been scheduled.

Circulator Boot Therapy in action at Delray Beach Podiatry.
Circulator Boot Therapy in action at Delray Beach Podiatry.

As well as providing an immediate boost to arterial and venous circulation, the procedure can also slowly break down clots. It increases the breakdown of plaque within the arteries by the release of nitric oxide oxygen and nourishment increase. You will see swelling and pain subside with the first few sessions. As circulation is restored with each further session, the body can begin to heal itself.

At Delray Beach Podiatry, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum, a podiatric physician and surgeon with over 30 years of experience, has used Circulator Boot Therapy to save a staggering 38 limbs from being amputated.

“It saves people’s lives,” said Dr. Goldbaum, who is the only doctor in South Florida with access to a Circular Boot. “When you have an amputation, within five years there is usually another event that transpires and people can pass away because of it.”

Circulation Boot Therapy is an excellent method for treating and correcting circulation problems such as diabetic ulcers and venous insufficiency.

“This is one of the few things we have that’s external and it does a terrific job,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “This actually saves people’s limbs from being taken off.”

Many amputations begin with a small injury to the foot, leg or toe, especially in the case of diabetics. Proper treatment, such as Circulator Boot Therapy, can prevent what may ultimately lead to infections and gangrene and end with an amputation and often a myriad of life long medical complications.

“Every time I have used Circulator Boot Therapy, it has increased blood flow,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “It’s all about blood flow. If you have good blood flow, then you have oxygen and nutrients that the body needs to heal.”

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Your feet and ankles are further from the heart than any other points on your body, so it’s important to know how to improve circulation in your legs.

(Jirka Lejska / Wikimedia Commons)
(Jirka Lejska / Wikimedia Commons)

For this reason, it is especially important that blood is able return from your lower extremities up to the heart without any difficulty. When you recognize that your circulatory system isn’t working properly, it’s likely time to make some changes to your lifestyle and contact your physician in order to work out a plan to get your blood properly flowing throughout your body again.

If you are diabetic, this issue becomes even more serious as poor circulation can often lead to a myriad of problems, including the formation of ulcers and potential amputation.

Luckily, there are several simple steps that can be taken to improve your circulation, such has:

How to Improve Circulation in Your Legs

1) Exercise Regularly

The transition from inactive to active can often be overwhelming for those looking to improve their health. The task doesn’t have to be daunting, however, if it is approached with the intent of gradually improving your levels of intensity and exercise duration rather than attempting to become a tri-athlete overnight. A good place to start is with some simple walking and then work your way up from there. If you begin to feel pain, take breaks as needed, but the goal should be to walk for 20-30 minutes a day, three to five days a week. From there, the sky’s the limit!

2) Maintain a Proper Diet

You are what you eat, and dietary choices often have a direct affect on your physical conditioning. Choosing to consume meals that are based on low-fat, minimally-processed foods are a great way to promote healthy blood flow and improve your overall physical health. Specific foods to include in your heart-healthy diet include oranges, sunflower seeds, salmon, avocados, watermelon, garlic and ginger.

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Believe it or not, there’s a lot more to good diabetic care than healthy eating and maintaining stable blood sugar levels.

Regular foot checks are an increasingly essential part of diabetes management as nerve damage and reduced circulation caused by diabetes can lead to reduced awareness of pain (neuropathy) and slower healing of the foot, which increases the risk of infection and foot ulcers.

Foot problems are one of the most common complications associated with diabetes and it’s important to check your feet daily for signs of damage in order to avoid future problems. In severe cases, poor foot care may lead to amputation of a foot or leg. In fact, even something as minimal as a blister or a sore could lead to an infection or a non-healing wound.

“Patients with diabetes have a decrease in sensation to their lower extremities,” said Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum, a podiatric physician and surgeon with over 30 years of experience. “Because of this, they can’t feel things that a person would normally feel.”

While there are many preventative measures that diabetics can be taken reduce the risk of a foot infection, Dr. Golbaum insists that his patients not only check their feet twice a day — once in the morning and again at night — but also moisturize their feet daily to combat dryness.

“Diabetics have a dryness, which can cause cracking on their feet,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “This cracking makes them more vulnerable to infections that can enter through those openings and cause problems.

“The moisturizing and massaging process increases circulation through movement and also supplies moisture that diabetes takes away from the skin. It really acts as a protective barrier for your skin.”

When examining your feet at home, look out for any general signs of damage that include:

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In an effort to greatly improve the lives of neuropathy sufferers in South Florida, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum is proud to announce that Delray Beach Podiatry and Boynton Beach Podiatry will now also serve as Neuropathy Centers for Lower Extremities.

“We can offer treatments for the lower extremities that most doctors do not have,” said Dr. Goldbaum, a podiatric physician and surgeon with over 30 years of experience. “We offer the newest technological advances for the treatment of neuropathy.”

Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum (pictured) has been practicing medicine for over 30 years, arriving to South Florida in 1985.
Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum (pictured) has been practicing medicine for over 30 years, arriving to South Florida in 1985.

An estimated 20 million people in the United States suffer from some form of neuropathy, a condition that affects the normal activity of the nerves that connect the central nervous system — the brain and spinal cord — to the rest of the body.

Neuropathy can involve various different nerve types, including motor, sensory, and autonomic nerves. It can also be categorized by the size of the nerve fibers involved, large or small.

In the world of podiatry, most cases of peripheral neuropathy are found in the feet and develop from nerve damage caused by diabetes. Diabetic neuropathy can occur in both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

In Type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce the insulin necessary to convert glucose into the energy that the body needs. Type 2 diabetes, which is far more common, occurs when the body is unable to use insulin properly.

It has been estimated that between 60 to 70 percent of diabetics will deal with some form of neuropathy in their lifetime, compared to only a 25 to 30 percent chance for non-diabetics.

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