Diabetic Feet: The Risks and How to Avoid Them

Statistics from the American Diabetes Association indicate that 24 million Americans suffer from diabetes. This disease is also the leading cause of amputations of feet, legs, and toes. Today, our podiatrist Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists outlines some of the risks associated with this disease and some tips for diabetic foot care.

Top 4 Risks for Patients With Diabetic Feet

As a person with diabetes, your feet face distinctive risks. Understanding them is the best way to avoid the common foot problems that come with this disease. Here are some of the most common foot health risks that people with diabetes have to cope with.

  1. Peripheral Arterial Disease: This disease reduces circulation and limits the amount of blood flow that reaches your feet, sometimes causing serious side effects.
  2. Infections: Blisters and abrasions are more dangerous for people with diabetes because blood flow to the feet is restricted so cuts cannot heal properly.
  3. Neuropathy: When your nerves do not function correctly, neuropathy occurs. This is particularly dangerous because if a patient cannot feel blisters or abrasions, they are at a higher risk of infection.
  4. Charcot Foot: This condition causes your foot to change its shape and is usually caused by fragile bones that break and collapse.

Daily Tips to Care For Your Diabetic Foot

With proper daily care, you can reduce the risk of having a foot ulcer or infection. Following are some tips to help maintain your healthy feet every day.

  • Make it a habit of inspecting your feet each day for cuts, sores or red spots.
  • Keep your feet clean and dry, paying particular attention to the area between your toes.
  • Wear socks around the house to keep your feet warm.
  • Exercise – it’s the best way to encourage blood flow to your feet.
  • Do not cut your toenails around the corners to avoid getting an ingrown toenail; instead, cut them straight across.
  • Improve blood circulation by quitting unhealthy habits such as smoking or sitting with your legs crossed for long periods.

If you notice any changes in your feet, it’s essential to visit your podiatrist right away to reduce the chance for infection or a more serious foot problem. Call the office of Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists today at (425) 455-0936 or schedule an appointment online.

Protect Your Feet if You Have Diabetes

If you’re living with diabetes, you may face problems with your feet, which is a common symptom of the disease.  Diabetes sufferers are at an elevated risk for a number of foot problems such as corns, calluses, bunions, and blisters. And high blood sugar can turn these minor issues into incapacitating infections.

There are, however, several tips to help keep your feet in healthy condition; Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing six of them today.

Tips to Keeping Your Diabetic Feet Healthy

  • Examine your feet daily. Nerve loss or damage can make it difficult to identify any irritations that may be affecting your feet. Be on the lookout for changes in color, lesions, or dry, cracked feet.
  • Wear diabetes-friendly footwear. When shopping for shoes, look for styles that have more depth in the toe area, provide proper coverage of both the top and bottom and have no seams inside the shoe that can irritate your feet.
  • Keep your feet dry. Make drying your feet a part of your daily hygiene routine, particularly in the space between your toes. This area tends to get moist and can lead to infection.
  • Visit a podiatrist regularly. Small issues can become large problems if they are ignored. Schedule a visit to a podiatrist instead of looking for an over-the-counter product at the pharmacy.
  • Treat your feet with low-impact exercises. Be aware that many fitness classes and aerobic exercises may not be good for your feet, especially if you suffer from neuropathy. Research other options that don’t put a lot of pressure on your feet. And always be sure to wear proper footwear.
  • Keep your blood sugar under control. When your blood sugar is out-of-control, it can lead to neuropathy, so the better you are at regulating your blood sugar, the healthier your feet will be.

Sufferers of diabetes have enough to worry about without having to worry about the health of their feet. Hopefully, these simple tips will help alleviate some of your concerns.  Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is an expert at providing comprehensive diabetic foot care.  Call our Bellevue, WA office today to schedule a consultation, or email us here.