If you’re diabetic, you know you need to take special care of their feet, or you can find them troubled in two ways in particular: reduced blood circulation and nerve damage.
According to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society, “Foot problems are a big risk. All people with diabetes should monitor their feet. If you don’t, the consequences can be severe, including amputation.”
Real briefly, here’s what to look for and some prevention ideas.
POOR BLOOD CIRCULATION IN DIABETICS
Are your feet always cold? Are your legs sore when you walk? Do your feet hurt while you’re lying down in bed at night? If you’re experiencing any of these problems, then you may be suffering from poor blood circulation. When blood circulation is poor, it can slow the healing process when you have cuts or other damage to your feet.
Maintaining a healthy, physically active lifestyle is one way to improve your circulation. A regular exercise regimen may be just the thing to keep your blood circulating properly and efficiently.
[Make sure you check with your doctor and/or health care specialist before beginning an exercise routine or physical fitness regimen. See our Medical Disclaimer.]
Controlling your blood fat and sugar levels in another way to help you improver you circulation. Often, this means a consistent, regulated and monitored diet.
[Make sure you check with your doctor and/or health care specialist before making changes to your diet and nutrition routine. See our Medical Disclaimer.]
Studies have revealed that smoking can increase blood pressure and adversely affect your blood circulation as well as damaging your heart, lungs and other organs and tissue. Quitting smoking can greatly reduce your chance of heart disease, improper blood circulation and lung disease.
NERVE DAMAGE IN DIABETICS
Do your feet get numb or feel numb at some point during the day or evening? Do you have a burning sensation on the soles of your feet? Do you experience pins and needles sensations? If you’ve experienced any of these symptoms, you may have signs of possible nerve damage.
In the nerves used to serve your feet are the longest in our bodies. Well, that stands to reason (sorry for the pun), but since the nerves must run from the central nervous system in the spine down to the feet and toes, then they would certainly be the longest. And being the longest, they are susceptible to damage by diabetes.
Nerve damage in the feet of a diabetic are particularly dangerous because cuts or blisters on the feet may go unnoticed and the neglect can lead to ulcers… and if still undetected, can ultimately lead to the loss of a foot or limb.
Inspect your feet regularly to ensure there are no signs of injury.
If you develop corns or calluses, see a podiatrist immediately for treatment.
Carefully wash and dry between your toes and keep your toenails neat and trimmed.
OTHER HELPFUL TIPS
Pamper your feet. Get a foot message periodically. Everyone loves to have their feet pampered, yet for diabetics, it not only feels great, it can also prevent serious health problems from arising down the road.
Don’t scrimp when it comes to socks, stocking and footwear. Gem Shoe Repair carries brands specifically catering to the needs of diabetics. Give us a call at (256) 236-5937 and ask about our shoe lines on sale… or come and see as at 908 Noble Street in downtown Anniston and get the fit that’s right for your feet from our knowledgeable footwear professionals.
Read the next article as we discuss the first lines of defense for the diabetic in serious healthcare… your socks. [Click Here to Read the Next Article]