Because of the peripheral nerve damage caused by diabetes, there can be a pronounced numbness and lack of feeling in the feet. This can cause even a relatively minor injury to go undetected. It doesn’t take long for an infection to start and quickly turn into a diabetic foot ulcer. This condition requires aggressive treatment to prevent spreading and may lead to the possible amputation of a toe or even an entire foot or lower leg.
Taking good care of your feet by wearing the right shoes and by performing daily foot inspections is the best way to avoid a foot ulcer.
Help avoid foot ulcers and possible amputation with these steps:
Wear properly fitted shoes with braces and orthotic inserts—Your footwear needs to be comfortable yet supportive, which means not too tight or loose. Stress from rubbing can cause skin damage and blistering on your toes, so always choose shoes with a wide toe box to allow your toes room to move without rubbing. Specially-made shoes are available for patients with diabetes that have extra space for orthotic inserts and ankle braces.
Inspect your feet every day—Diabetes causes damage to the nerves in your hands and feet, which can make it difficult to detect an injury or damage without performing a visual inspection. Try to get in the habit of doing daily foot inspections to check for cuts, blisters, scrapes, and ingrown nails. Inspect your heels and the balls of your feet for calluses and heel fissures that can crack and bleed, leading to infection. Use a mirror to check the bottom of your feet and be sure to carefully check between your toes.
For expert advice on foot ulcer prevention and treatment, consult with our board-certified podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Center of Fort Lee, LLC. The center offers convenient locations in Fort Lee NJ, Ringwood NJ, Flushing Queens NY, Woodhaven NY, Brooklyn NY, and Forest Hills NY. Contact us at (201) 363-9844and schedule an appointment today!