If you have diabetes, your feet can become very problematic. Foot problems can include skin and tissue issues. You will need to see a podiatrist to take care of these problems. The Pennsylvania Hospital has an on-site podiatrist who is trained in diabetic foot care.
Avoiding over-the-counter foot care products
The best advice for diabetics is to avoid over-the-counter foot care products, as these can irritate the skin and increase the risk of infection. You should always see a podiatrist for foot care, as these professionals are trained in foot care and will know exactly how to treat your condition. Diabetics should also avoid going barefoot and should always wear proper footwear. In addition to that, they should never try to remove calluses on their own, as they can burn their skin and end up damaging their feet.
Avoiding sitting still for long periods
Oftentimes, people with diabetes neglect their feet and do not take proper care of them. Diabetes can also cause the feet to develop callouses, corns, and ulcers very quickly. It is easy for these patients to ignore their feet because they are busy dealing with other health conditions. However, ignoring these symptoms is not a good idea, and they should see a podiatrist as soon as possible.
When sitting still for long periods, people with diabetes should move their toes and ankles to promote blood flow to their feet. This can also help prevent infection. Those with diabetes should avoid putting their feet on radiators and in front of fireplaces. They should also refrain from smoking because this decreases the blood supply to their feet. Also, they should avoid using sharp instruments on their feet, especially the toenails. They should also use nail files instead of clippers to maintain a straight, natural-looking toenail.
Another important aspect of diabetic foot care is the prevention of neuropathy. A patient with diabetes is at high risk for developing neuropathy, a condition in which nerves are damaged. This condition can affect the feet, hands, and lower legs. Because most people don’t pay much attention to the feet, they may not realize they have problems until they begin to feel numbness or tingling in their feet. However, with regular foot exams and examinations, the podiatrist can help identify any problem before it becomes severe.
It is important for diabetics to watch their feet carefully and take action when they see any changes. It is also necessary to check for sores and color changes on a regular basis. These changes should be promptly reported to a Podiatrist so that they can be treated as soon as possible.
Diabetics are at higher risk for wounds on their feet, which can lead to infections and amputations. In fact, 130,000 diabetics are hospitalized for amputations every year. To prevent this from happening, wound care is essential.
Diabetics must be diligent about daily foot care to prevent wounds. In addition to keeping blood glucose levels in the recommended range, they must take their prescribed medications and maintain an active lifestyle. This includes regular examinations of their feet and skin, including the sides and in between toes. Even a slight rash or abnormality can turn into a serious wound.
Diabetics have compromised nerves in their feet, making them particularly susceptible to wounds. Without regular foot care, wounds can turn into ulcers. Fortunately, a foot specialist can help diabetics prevent them from becoming a serious problem. In particular, they can provide advice on how to avoid foot pain and numbness.
Diabetics need to be extra vigilant in checking their feet for sores, cuts, and ingrown toenails. They should visit a podiatrist daily and have their foot examined by a professional if there are any problems. If these conditions are left untreated, they can lead to amputation and serious infection. Additionally, diabetic foot ulcers can lead to neuropathy, a condition that affects nerves in the foot.
Diabetics should not walk directly on their wounds for several days until the wound is healed. They should also use post-op-shoes or removable orthopedic boots to provide off-loading. If the wound is not healing properly, the podiatrist may prescribe antibiotics or wound care to treat the infection.
Prevention of amputations in diabetics begins with early recognition and regular foot examinations. A podiatrist, a foot and ankle specialist, can offer a range of foot and ankle care services to prevent foot and leg amputations. Diabetics should regularly check their feet and wear thick, soft socks to improve circulation. They should also avoid excessive weight and exercise. Moreover, patients should wear appropriate athletic shoes when they do exercise.
Early treatment of foot ulcers is vital in preventing recurrence. Continuous podiatric care, offloading strategies, and appropriate diabetic foot education are recommended to help prevent ulcers. If infection persists, hospitalization and antibiotics are necessary. However, amputations should be reserved for severe conditions that are life-threatening.
Amputations are a public health burden and pose significant economic, social, and psychological consequences for patients. They reduce ambulatory independence and reduce life expectancy. The mental impact of amputation is often undervalued by health care providers. Patients can go through a wide range of emotional responses, including denial, anger, and depression. Some patients may require psychological or psychiatric counseling in order to cope with their new condition.
Diabetic foot ulcers are the leading cause of lower-limb amputations in patients with diabetes. Without proper care, these ulcers can become infected and require an amputation. Fortunately, diabetes can be managed and prevented. Proper care and management of blood sugar levels can prevent foot ulcers in diabetics.
In addition to foot ulcers, diabetes can cause peripheral neuropathy and foot ulcers. Diabetic neuropathy affects blood vessels, nerves, and the skin and bones. Diabetic neuropathy can make it difficult to recognize signs of infection.