Understanding How Diabetes Can Affect Your Feet
Diabetes is a disease which can affect your body in a number of different ways, including your feet. If you have diabetes, you cannot ignore the risks posed to you and you must take extremely good care of your feet in order to prevent damage. When you fail to properly control your diabetes, you could be compromising your immune system.
As a result of this type of damage, you may not feel certain impairments or damage to your feet. At Newtown Foot & Ankle Specialists, our Newtown diabetic foot care expert strives to help educate our patients so you know how to prevent and recognize foot problems.
Foot Complications Caused by Diabetes
Many patients diagnosed with diabetes are told how to handle their insulin, but not how to look out for foot problems or infections. If you have had diabetes for years or have struggled with controlling your diabetes, you could be at higher risk for nerve damage in your feet. This is known as peripheral neuropathy and can lead to serious harm to your feet, such as strain, blisters, scrapes, and cuts.
The following can also put your feet at risk for further damage:
- Foot trauma
- Untreated infections
- Poor circulation
Precautions You Can Take for Your Feet
While some serious symptoms may require the intervention of surgery, others require the guidance of a doctor to how you can take precautions for your feet. The first thing to keep in mind is that you must monitor your feet frequently and not ignore signs that something is wrong, such as numbness or tingling. When diabetic patients fail to take precautions for their feet sooner than later, it can lead to serious complications like the loss of a leg, foot, or toe.
A few steps you can take to be proactive with your foot health include:
- Regularly look for scratches, cuts, or bruises
- Keep your feet warm and avoid getting them wet or cold
- Don't sit cross-legged, which can decrease blood flow
- Don't soak your feet and keep them dry
- Avoid smoking
- Keep your toenails trimmed
- Wear socks regularly
- Buy comfortable shoes