How to Care for Your Feet When Living with Diabetes

Why Proper Foot Care is Important

If you are currently living with diabetes, it is essential that you take care of your feet. Diabetes can make you more vulnerable to foot problems because it can damage the nerves and reduce blood flow to this area. In fact, the American Diabetes Association estimates that one in every five patients with diabetes who seeks medical care does so for the treatment of foot problems. Fortunately, most serious health problems that stem from diabetes can be prevented through proper, and diligent, care.

“Diabetes is predictably unpredictable. Complications will arise, but the key is to deal with them quickly and effectively.” – Hassan Kobaissi, D.P.M. Podiatrics .

Preventing Foot Problems Caused By Diabetes

Are you living with diabetes? Listed below are a few helpful foot care tips:

#1: Wash & Dry Your Feet Every Day:

  • One of the most important ways to care for your feet is to wash and dry them daily. Use mild soaps and warm water, and pat your skin dry when you are done – do not rub them.

#2: Examine Your Feet Every Day:

  • Apart from having your doctor examine your feet annually, you should also inspect them daily. Look for dry, cracked skin and blisters, cuts or scratches. Also check for ingrown toenails.

#3: Keep Your Skin Smooth & Soft:

  • To prevent the skin on your feet from cracking, you should try to moisturize them daily. Rub a thin coat of lotion on the top and bottom of your feet, but not in between your toes.

#4: Take Care of Your Toenails:

  • To prevent your toenails from growing into your skin, you should trim them regularly. It is best to do this right after bathing, since they will be soft. Cut them straight across.

#5: Wear Shoes & Socks at All Times:

  • Wearing shoes and socks at all times is critical to protecting your feet. Not only will this keep you from stepping on something sharp, but it will help you avoid blisters and sores.

#6: Keep Blood Flowing in Your Feet:

  • Diabetes can reduce the blood flow to your feet, so you should make it a point to keep them active—even if you just wiggle your toes for five minutes, two to three times a day.

#7: Wear Shoes that Fit Correctly:

  • Ill-fitting shoes can further restrict the blood flow to your feet and leave you susceptible to blisters or sores. Your shoes should be at least ½ inch longer than your longest toe.

Talk to your health care provider if you have concerns or questions about proper foot care when living with diabetes.

This article contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. The information is not advice and should not be treated as such. The information is not intended to replace the advice or diagnosis of a physician.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.