Taking Care of Your Toes and Feet

Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy: 3 Simple Preventive Ways to Care for Your Feet

Though diabetes affects the eyes, causing scarring, it affects the feet more. A small cut, footsore, bug bite or blister on your feet could cause a serious foot problem. Foot problems such as calluses, athlete's foot, blisters, corns, bunions, diabetic ulcers, ingrown toenails, hammertoes, plantar warts and dry skin are common to people with diabetes. However, diabetic peripheral neuropathy can lead to more serious complications like amputation if proper diabetic foot care is ignored.

How Does Diabetes Peripheral Neuropathy Develop?

Diabetes peripheral neuropathy develops when the feet and leg nerves get damaged, causing your feet not to feel pain, cold or heat. If this condition causes you not to feel a sore or cut on your foot, then the cut could worsen and get infected. If the foot muscles' nerves are damaged, the muscles won't work properly. Thus, too much pressure would be created on one part of your foot, causing it not to realign properly. See what diabetic care a podiatrist could recommend to help enhance foot sensation and avoid severe infections.

Keep an Eye on Your Feet and Toe Nails

Don't wash your feet in hot water because it could burn your skin; use luke-warm water instead. Use your forearm or hand to check the water temperature before you dip your feet in the basin, and use a soft towel to dry the areas between your toes gently. Let the podiatrist recommend the moisturiser you can use so you could use one that won't leave your feet dry or cracked. Avoid using lotion between toes because it increases chances for athlete's foot infections. Trim the toenails straight across, and use an emery board to file edges. You risk developing ingrown toenails when you round the toenail corners. If you can't reach your toes, visit a foot-care specialist to trim the calluses, corns and toenails for you.

Wear Orthotic Shoes and Foot-Friendly Socks

People with diabetes should choose socks and shoes that can help prevent diabetic neuropathy. Avoid flip-flops and high heels and don't go barefoot without socks. Dry socks and comfortable, supportive shoes will help prevent foot-nerve damage. Choose shoes made of leather and natural fibres because they keep your feet more comfortable. Check what's inside the shoes before you wear them; nails, tacks, a torn lining or small pebbles inside the shoes could harm your feet in a big way. Choose seamless and loose socks and change them daily or even two or three times if your feet get too sweaty.

Visit a Podiatrist to Examine Your Feet

A podiatrist should examine your feet once a week to find out if you are improving or losing sensation in your feet. If the foot-care specialist notices skin changes, nerve damage, deformities or circulation problems, they could recommend a comprehensive foot examination or prescribe a different podiatry diabetes treatment. The podiatry diabetes treatment services you get could also depend on if you ever had an amputation or foot ulcers.

For more information, contact a diabetic podiatry care service.