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Diabetic Foot Prevention

Published July 30, 2015

Diabetes can cause a number of foot concerns that have the potential to be life threatening. However, the good news is that there are several ways to prevent possible complications, and with the proper routine care and maintenance, your podiatrist can help prevent serious foot issues. 

Recommendations for Diabetic Foot Prevention:

  • Manage your diabetes.  Form a plan with your healthcare team to achieve adequate blood glucose control. The better a person’s glucose control, the better a patient's outlook on preventing diabetic complications.
  • Never walk barefoot. Wear shoes and socks at all times. Wearing shoes and socks prevents possible injuries to the feet. Also, inspect the insides of shoes for foreign objects. 
  • Have a physical fitness routine. Set up a realistic physical activity program with your health care professionals to stay in shape. Physical activity increases blood flow to the feet and can improve the overall foot health.
  • Inspect your feet daily. Routinely, check your feet.  After washing feet, inspect for redness, foot swelling, nail concerns, and any new wounds. Untreated wounds could lead to serious infection and possible complications.  Use a mirror to see the bottom of your feet.
  • Protect feet from excessive temperatures. Some diabetics suffer from circulation issues.  Decreased blood flow to the feet makes them susceptible to ailments caused by extreme temperatures. Avoiding extreme temperatures lessens the chances of these complications.
  • Apply moisture cream or lotion to feet daily.  Keeping the feet supple and soft prevents callus build up, fissures, and the cracking of skin. Making sure feet are moisturized can aid in the prevention of infections. Never apply moisture cream or lotion between the toes.
  • Avoid trimming toenails. It is important for diabetic patients to be evaluated by a podiatrist before trimming their toenails. Diabetic patients should have their nails trimmed only by a podiatrist. 
  • Wear appropriate shoes. Diabetics should have their shoes evaluated by a podiatrist. Poorly fitting shoes can result in ulcerations and other foot problems. Patients should be fitted for new shoes at the end of the day when a person’s foot is at its largest, usually due to swelling. In some cases, special diabetic shoes may be needed to provide more accommodations.
  • Wear diabetic custom orthotics to prevent ulceration. Diabetic custom orthotics can be beneficial to distribute a person's weight more appropriately to prevent ulcerations and accommodate any structural deformities of the foot.
Routine and regular foot examinations by a podiatrist are important to prevent diabetic foot complications. Diabetes can be a progressive and life threatening disease that needs to be managed with appropriate preventive steps. If you are suffer from diabetes, call today to make an appointment to see one of the doctors at Progressive Foot Care. 
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