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Saturday, December 27, 2014

Why People With Diabetes Need to Inspect Their Feet Daily -- And 4 Other Tips!

Diabetes is a long-term medical condition caused when the body's blood glucose (sugar) levels rise to levels that are higher than normal. People of Middle Eastern, African, or South Asian descent have a higher risk of developing the disease. People with diabetes also have an increased risk of foot problems, which is why they need to pay particular attention to their feet.

Diabetes and foot problems

When people have diabetes, even minor sores on the feet may not heal and can easily turn into ulcers. If left untreated, these ulcers can even become gangrenous, resulting in tissue actually dying and often requiring amputation of the foot. Following these 5 suggestions can prevent more serious damage to the feet.

  1. Early diagnosis - get regular checkups with your doctor if you have diabetes. Early detection of foot problems resulting from diabetes may prevent further damage.
  2. Inspect feet daily - you can look for signs of foot damage at home, such as blisters, cuts, cracks, dry skin, redness, tenderness, or sores on the skin. These can be found on the bottom of feet or between the toes.
  3. Avoid tight-fitting shoes - diabetes causes damage to blood vessels and nerves in the feet, so wearing tight shoes will cause more damage. Make sure shoes fit properly and comfortably.
  4. Protect feet - not only should diabetes patients always wear socks, but they need to protect their feet from cold and injury.
  5. Don't use OTC products on your feet - people with diabetes always need to have their feet treated by their doctor. It is risky to use over-the-counter products to cure infections or get rid of corns and bunions.

Why the feet are affected

Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes cause damage to blood vessels and peripheral nerves that can result in problems in the legs and feet. Both peripheral artery disease (PAD), and peripheral neuropathy can cause cause the muscles of the feet to work improperly or decrease the amount of oxygen going to the legs and feet with can increase the risk of foot problems in people with diabetes.

DISCLAIMER: The content or opinions expressed on this web site are not to be interpreted as medical advice. Please consult with your doctor or medical practitioner before utilizing any suggestions on this web site.