Frequent Questions Asked About Diabetic Foot Care
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What Do I Look for in a Daily Foot Inspection?
When you are diabetic, there are many threats to the health and wellbeing of your feet. Since neuropathy (nerve damage) often accompanies diabetes, you may not be able to feel issues that have developed and now threaten your health. This means you need to use a daily foot inspection to identify problems at the earliest opportunity so you can stay safe.
When performing a daily foot inspection, you basically need to look for anything out of the ordinary. As a general rule, any discoloration, growth, or wound needs to be reported.
Specific items you need to check for every day include:
- Scratches, cuts, and abrasions
- Dry, cracked skin
- Calluses and corns
- Plantar warts
- Ingrown and discolored toenails
If you find any of these conditions, schedule the earliest possible appointment with our office. In the event you discover any sign of infection (pain, swelling, warmth, or redness) seek emergency medical services.
How Can I Keep My Diabetic Feet Safe?
When you have diabetes, you need to give special care and attention to your feet. The disease puts you at risk for severe medical complications – including Charcot foot and diabetic foot ulcers.
The first step in protecting your feet when you have diabetes is to manage your blood glucose (sugar) levels. Excessive sugar in the body causes widespread, systemic damage. Specific systems impacting foot health for diabetic individuals include the circulatory, nervous, and immune systems. These respective systems all have vital roles throughout the body, including down in the feet.
In addition to managing sugar levels, specific actions for foot health include protecting your feet, inspecting them for damage, and seeking early treatment when problems are found.
With that in mind, the best action you can take—in addition to managing your blood sugar levels—is to come see Dr. Ripepi and create a diabetic foot care plan. Following your foot care plan will be essential for making sure your feet are safe and healthy, and problems are caught and resolved at the earliest opportunity.
An important part of your diabetic foot care plan will be a daily foot inspection.