What Is Diabetic Foot Care And Why Is It Important?

Diabetes is a chronic debilitating disease that is prevailing worldwide. It negatively affects your immune system and can lead to several complications if not controlled. Foot problems are common in people with diabetes. 

Newnan GA podiatry specialists provide comprehensive foot care for diabetic people of all age groups, thereby reducing the risk of nerve damage and other complications like gangrene and amputations. 

What is diabetic foot care?

Special care taken to keep your feet healthy, especially if you suffer from diabetes is known as diabetic foot care. Foot problems are common complications of diabetes, which can be affected in two ways:

  • Nerve neuropathy: Uncontrolled diabetes can damage your nerves in the feet making them lose sensitivity. 
  • Peripheral arterial disease: The blood vessels in your feet become constricted, leading to poor circulation. This greatly comprises the wound healing ability. 

Foot care is important during diabetes since you can prevent damage to your nerves, thereby minimizing the risk of complications like foot ulcers, sores, and gangrene. These foot-related problems if not prevented or treated can lead to amputations. 

What are the signs that necessitate diabetic foot care?

Diabetic foot care is crucial and highly recommended if you notice the following symptoms:

  • Skin discoloration
  • Poor sensitivity to heat, cold, or touch 
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Severe pain
  • Loss of hair on your legs and feet
  • Thickening and yellowing of toenails 

In case of ulcers and sores, seek medical attention immediately.

What does diabetic foot care involve?

Initially, diabetic foot care involves an extensive evaluation and physical examination of your feet. 

  • Your podiatrist will review your medical history to know about the duration since you have been suffering from diabetes, the type being suffered, and the medications being taken.
  • A podiatry exam will be conducted to evaluate the severity of your symptoms. Your doctor will assess your legs, feet, ankles, and toes to check for skin discoloration, hair loss, or open wounds. 
  • Your doctor may order a biopsy test if you have an open wound to determine the type of infection to plan the treatment. 

How to prevent diabetes-related foot problems?

You can prevent diabetes-related foot problems by following the below-mentioned tips, to keep your feet healthy.

  • Keep a check on any changes that may occur in your feet, like skin discoloration, or hair loss
  • Visit your podiatrist at least once a year for evaluation
  • Keep your toenails trimmed
  • Wash your feet regularly with warm water and unscented soap, and dry them well
  • Do not walk barefoot, always wear socks and comfortable shoes
  • Smooth out corns or calluses

Remember, diabetes-related foot problems can worsen very quickly and are difficult to treat, thus it is important to seek prompt medical attention.