Keys to diabetes foot care

An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure

People with diabetes can develop several foot problems, some of which can lead to serious complications. Diabetes can cause nerve damage, which makes your feet less sensitive to pain, heat and cold. Another result of nerve damage is your feet become very dry. Because of this you might not notice a sharp object in your shoe, or even a small cut on your foot. Diabetes may also reduce the flow of blood to your feet, which will make it harder for your body to heal a small cut or blister, or fight off an infection. Therefore a small cut or wound could develop into a serious infection and even to amputation. This handy test can help you monitor the sensation in your feet and your risk for ulcers. Ask your doctor for a ‘monofilament’ so you can test your feet at home! Diabetes foot test   Push to make the filament bend Push to make the filament bend Foot screen test sites

Foot care tips

  • Keep your blood glucose in your target range as much as possible.
  • Examine your feet every day for blisters, cuts, swelling, and red sports.
  • Be active, but pay attention when you exercise. Do not exercise with open sores on your feet.
  • Wash your feet every day. Dry them carefully, especially between the toes.
  • To keep your feet from getting dry, use skin lotion for the tops and bottoms of your feet. Do not use lotion between your toes.
  • Cut your toenails after bathing when they are soft. Cut them straight across and avoid cutting into the corners. File the edges with an emery board or nail file.
  • Always wear comfortable shoes and socks that fit well. Never walk barefoot. Check inside your shoes for foreign objects before putting them on.
  • Be careful with hot and cold temperatures. Do not walk barefoot on the beach or on hot pavement. Use your elbow to measure water temperature instead of your feet.
  • To keep the blood flowing to your feet, put your feet up when sitting. Avoid crossing your legs. Wiggle your toes and move your ankles up and down a couple of times a day.
Keys to diabetes foot care