Posts for tag: diabetic foot
Why is foot health important?
People with diabetes are at a much greater risk for developing serious problems such as nerve damage, loss of sensation, ulcers, and decreased circulation. This chronic condition also increases your risk for infections. Even small cuts and minor blisters can lead to a serious infection if left untreated.
This is why it’s important that any changes to your feet, even minor ones, are addressed and treated by a podiatrist rather than trying to treat the problem yourself. By turning to a podiatrist you can prevent further complications from happening.
How do I care for diabetic feet?
There are many things that you can do every day to maintain healthy, happy feet. This is something that your podiatrist can discuss with you when you come in for a comprehensive evaluation. Even if you have your diabetes properly controlled with medication, it’s still important to have a foot doctor that you can turn to for routine care, nail trimming, and more. Some tips for keeping diabetic feet healthy and problem-free include,
- Washing feet with warm water and soap at least once a day. Make sure that you also clean between toes. Once your feet are thoroughly clean, also dry them off completely before applying moisturizer.
- Never go barefoot, even indoors, as this could lead to an injury. Make sure to always check your shoes before putting them on to ensure that dirt or small objects may not be inside (as this can lead to injury).
- Wear shoes that provide the proper fit. There are shoes designed specifically for those with diabetes; however, as long as you wear shoes that provide protection, optimal support, and the ideal fit, this is all you need.
- You should always have your feet examined by a podiatrist at least once a year to check blood flow and to make sure that there are no issues. If you have trouble trimming your nails properly, you can also turn to a podiatrist who will do it for you.
Common podiatry problems like athlete's foot, ingrown toenails, warts and calluses can be uncomfortable, inconvenient and painful under any circumstances. For people suffering from diabetes, even minor foot injuries or infections can increase the risk of developing into potentially serious complications. People with diabetes are also especially vulnerable to a condition known as peripheral neuropathy, which results in damage to nerves in the feet.
In order to prevent and catch potential foot problems as early as possible, the podiatrists at Oakton Foot and Ankle Center, PLLC in Fairfax, VA advise diabetic patients to make routine foot care and check ups a part of their general yearly healthcare routine.
Diabetic Foot Care in Fairfax, VA
One of the most common foot problems for people with diabetes is nerve damage to the legs and feet (peripheral or diabetic neuropathy). The elevated blood sugar levels characteristic of diabetes also increase the risk of neuropathy, which can technically develop anywhere in the peripheral nervous system, but is most common in the feet. General symptoms of neuropathy include:
- Numbness, tingling or burning sensation in the feet
- Pain, cramping or heightened sensitivity to touch and even gentle pressure
- Muscle fatigue and weakness
- Sores, ulcers or infections that do not heal on their own within a reasonable amount of time
If you are suffering from diabetes and are experiencing symptoms of neuropathy, seek immediate treatment from a podiatrist with experience in diabetic foot care.
In addition to the potential for developing neuropathy, diabetic patients are also at risk for complications from common problems like a ruptured blister or an infected ingrown toenail. In order to prevent complications, people with diabetes are advised to make regular foot care appointments with a podiatrist for check-ups and regular toenail and foot maintenance.
Find a Podiatrist in Fairfax, VA
For more information on how to prevent peripheral neuropathy and other diabetic foot problems, contact Oakton Foot and Ankle Center, PLLC by calling (703) 352-8888 to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist today.