When you suffer from diabetes, you not only have to worry about controlling your blood sugar. You also have to take better care of your feet. Diabetes can make you lose feeling in your feet and make you more susceptible to an infection. If the infection is bad enough, you could even lose one or both of your feet. Here are seven great foot care tips for diabetic patients.
Stay Out of Hot Tubs
Hot tubs may be very relaxing and help soothe sore muscles, but they can be dangerous for diabetic patients. When you develop nerve damage in your feet, it can be very difficult to tell if the water is too hot or not. If the water is too hot, you can develop burns and blisters on your feet, putting you at risk of an infection. If you still want to get into a hot tub, you should at least check the temperature with your elbow first.
Wear the Right Shoes
When you have diabetes, it is even more important to wear the right shoes. If you do not wear shoes that fit propery, you increase your risk of ulcers, which can lead to amputation. When shopping for shoes, choose a suede, canvas or leather pair because they allow more circulation. The pair of shoes you choose should also have soft insoles. Avoid shoes that have high heels because they put too much pressure on your feet.
Do not Go Barefoot Inside Your Home
Wearing shoes inside your home might not make sense, but it is a must for diabetic patients. When you do not have feeling in your feet, you can easily step on a needle or piece of glass and not even notice. If you do not take care of the cut or scrape on your feet right away, it can lead to an infection. If you always have shoes on, you do not have to worry about these problems.
Smoking tobacco does not just put you at risk of cancer and heart disease; it can also affect your feet. Cigarettes can deprive your feet of oxygen, making them more susceptible of infection. If you quit smoking right now, you can protect your feet and lower your risk of several chronic diseases.
Dry Your Feet Thoroughly
Remember to dry your feet thoroughly after you get done with your shower or bath. Pay special attention to the skin between your toes. If you do not dry your feet properly, the skin will get moist and can lead to an infection.
Examine Your Feet Every Day
Since nerve damage is common in diabetes, it is important to examine your feet every day. Look for sores, cuts and any changes in color. If you notice anything wrong with your feet, you should go to a podiatrist clinic right away. If you ignore feet problems too long, you can get an infection.
Choose Low-Impact Exercises
Exercise is very beneficial for diabetic patients, but it is very important to choose the right workouts. If you do exercises that involve a lot of jumping and bouncing, you could put too much pressure on your feet. It is best to stick to low-impact exercises such as swimming, walking and yoga.
Taking care of your feet takes a little extra effort, but it is well worth it. If you follow these helpful tips, you can keep your feet healthy and avoid infections. If you notice any changes in your feet, you should not wait to tell your doctor. Your doctor will thoroughly examine your feet and determine the best way to treat the problem.