Diabetes can significantly impact your health, but your feet are one area you may not realize requires a little extra care. Over time, high blood sugar levels damage the nerves in your feet, leading to diabetic neuropathy, which can quickly become severe and cause numbness, tingling, or even loss of sensation in your feet.
Nearly half of all diabetic adults have neuropathy, so we make diabetic foot care a key focus of our comprehensive services. We also prioritize equipping you with the tools to manage your foot health effectively.
Here, Dr. Maurice Aiken and our team at Bay Breeze Foot & Ankle Specialists highlight four simple ways to care for your feet and keep them healthy.
Sometimes, the most basic interventions are the most effective — the most important thing you can do to care for your feet when you have diabetes is simply check them regularly.
We recommend you inspect your feet daily for cuts, blisters, redness, or swelling. If you have trouble seeing the bottoms of your feet, use a mirror or ask someone to help you. If you notice any issues, you must address them right away. Even minor cuts or blisters can turn into severe infections if left untreated.
Choosing and wearing the right shoes is also essential for diabetic foot care. Make sure your shoes fit properly and provide enough support. Avoid shoes that are too tight or loose or have pointed toes. Look for shoes made from breathable materials and cushioned soles to help evenly distribute pressure on your feet and reduce stress points.
Also, avoid walking barefoot, especially outside or on uneven surfaces, to prevent cuts or injuries.
Another simple-but-effective tip for diabetic foot care — keep them clean and hydrated. Remember to wash your feet daily with warm water and gentle soap, and dry them thoroughly, especially between your toes, because moisture can cause infections. Apply lotion or cream to the tops and bottoms of your feet to moisturize them, but avoid putting them between your toes.
You can do a lot to care for your feet when you have diabetes, but it's no substitute for our care and expertise. A podiatrist like Dr. Aiken, who specializes in foot and ankle care, can help you manage foot problems and provide guidance on proper foot care.
If you have diabetes, we strongly recommend visiting us at least once a year, even if you don't have any issues, to ensure your feet remain healthy and to catch any potential problems early on.
Taking care of your feet is crucial when you have diabetes, and we can help you stay on track. Feel free to schedule an appointment online or over the phone at our Dunedin, Florida, office if you have any concerns about your feet or notice any issues.