Foot Care Tips for Diabetics
Ultimately, the best way to prevent any complications, such as foot ulcers, for diabetics is to have your diabetes under control! To do so you need to have a healthy diet, get regular exercise, and monitor your blood sugar. However, to ensure you’re showing your feet the care that they need and preventing any future medical mishaps, just follow these foot care tips.
- Inspect your feet every day. Keep an eye out for blisters, cuts, cracks, sores, redness, tenderness or swelling.
- Wash your feet daily. This should be part of your daily routine anyway. Wash your feet in lukewarm water then dry them gently, especially between the toes. Use a pumice stone to rub the skin and prevent nasty calluses. To keep your toes dry, sprinkle talcum powder or cornstarch between them. For soft feet, rub lotion on the bottom and top of your foot.
- Don’t remove calluses or other foot lesions yourself. This could be so dangerous. Don’t take things into your own hands by using a nail file, nail clipper or scissors on calluses, corns, bunions or warts. That’s a job for your podiatrist.
- Trim your toenails carefully. Trim them straight across and file sharp ends with an emery board.
- Don’t go barefoot. Just don’t do it. Plain and simple. Even around the house. You never know what you might step on.
- Wear clean, dry socks. Stick to socks made of cotton and special acrylic fibers, not nylon. Socks with tight elastic bands reduce circulation, so you may want to stay away from those also.
- Buy shoes that fit properly. You need shoes that aren’t only comfortable but provide support and cushioning for the heel, arch and ball of your foot. As much as we hate to say it, you need to avoid those hot red pumps or narrow shoes that crowd your toes. In some cases, you may even need special orthotic shoes that are recommended by your doctor.
- Don’t smoke. This should go without saying. Smoking impairs circulation and allows less oxygen into the blood. These problems can turn into more severe wounds and poor healing.
- Schedule regular foot checkups. Have your podiatrist check out your feet at least once a year for early signs of nerve damage, poor circulation or other foot problems you may be having.
- Take foot injuries seriously. Do you have a foot injury? Don’t just ignore the problem, contact your podiatrist inspect your feet and prescribe the right course of treatment for you.