At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we treat many patients with diabetes. November is American Diabetes Month and a good opportunity for us to go over some care tactics for patients with this disease. Below are some key areas to focus on:
Your Daily Care Routine
Of course, a good foot care regimen is important for everyone, but for a diabetic patient, it is even more critical. Your daily care plan should include:
- Washing your feet with warm water and a mild soap
- Drying your feet completely, with extra care to ensure that the area between your toes is completely dry (this will help prevent fungal infections)
- Checking toenails for jagged edges. Always trim nails straight across with no rounded edges. Do not cut too short and never cut the corners.
- Inspect your feet from every angle. Look for changes in skin and nail color, rashes, flaking skin, bruises, swelling, any scratches or cuts. Report anything that concerns you to our podiatrists, Victoria Foley and Dr. Constance Omelas to evaluate. It’s always better to be over cautious!
Your Shoes and Socks
Shoes should have wide, roomy toe boxes and be made of soft, flexible materials. Avoid heels higher than 2 inches. When buying new shoes, have your foot professionally measured. Run your hand around the inside of the shoe to make sure there are no rough spots or loose stitching. Wear new shoes for only a few hours at a time and examine your feet after wearing to make sure there are no red spots or blisters forming.
Socks should be the type that wick moisture away from your feet. If you sweat excessively, change your socks multiple times throughout the day. Avoid socks that have overly tight elastic on the tops and those with seams across the toes.
Your Lifestyle Choices
Eating an appropriate diet to help manage your blood sugar is essential. A regular exercise routine will help you maintain a good weight and also improve circulation. Don’t smoke because it has a negative impact on circulation. Follow all of your doctor’s recommendations for keeping your diabetes under control.