Primary causes of hospitalization and lower extremity amputation in patients with diabetes are wounds and cuts that occur on the feet and toes that can become quickly infected and gangrenous. Often a patient with diabetes is unaware that he or she has a cut because peripheral neuropathy inhibits the sensation of pain. However, foot ulcers are actually a preventable condition with the diligent intervention and care that is so very important if you have diabetes.
Foot Ulcer Prevention
Here is a list of steps to take to minimize the development of potentially dangerous and sometimes even deadly foot ulcers:
Proper shoes—Proper shoe choice and expert fitting with orthotics are essential to the good health of your feet in general, but especially in the case of those patients who have diabetes. Specially-made shoes and custom orthotic inserts are two excellent ways of avoiding foot and ankle injuries.
Proper washing and drying—You can help avoid infection by washing your feet daily and drying carefully.
Foot inspections— Always carefully check between the toes and don’t forget to look at the bottoms of your feet using a mirror if needed.
Proper nail trimming—An ingrown nail is often the place an infection starts. This can be avoided by always carefully trimming your toenail straight across rather than on a curve. Keep in mind to never share your clippers and other foot care products as well as footwear to avoid cross-bacterial and fungal contamination.
Temperature extremes—Avoid either very hot or very cold water and air temperatures.
Manage your disease—Keep your blood sugar in the recommended ranges. Proper exercise and eating a healthy, balanced diet are also vital.
Regular visits to your podiatrist—It is extremely important to develop a comprehensive foot care regimen with your foot care professional to properly manage your diabetes. This also is an excellent way to be proactive with your condition and to avoid unnecessary complications.
If you are experiencing foot ulcers or other complications from diabetes, 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) 363-9844 and schedule an appointment today!