Diabetes is a metabolic disorder which can have a number of debilitating effects. The health of blood vessels can be compromised and nerve function may be lost. In many instances people with diabetes develop a condition known as peripheral neuropathy. This results in a loss of sensation in the feet making it impossible to feel the pain of an injury which if left unattended, may become infected. When combined with skin that has become less elastic and has a compromised blood flow, the consequences are often very serious. The good news is that with the proper care, many of these complications are preventable. At Hills District Podiatry we conduct annual assessments for all of our patients with diabetes.
Get a foot examination and neurovascular check every year. Our podiatrists carry out diabetic foot assessments on a regular basis, using various diagnostic tools such as ultrasound to detect issues before they get out of hand. Check your feet every day By checking your feet every day you can prevent minor injuries becoming major issues. Small wounds can become ulcers if neglected long enough. If you have compromised blood flow an ulcer can take a long time to heal, even with the best of care. Take care of your diabetes and exercise Seek advice from your doctor or health care team about keeping your blood glucose within your target range. Regular exercise and weight loss has been proven to assist with the effects of diabetes, but it is always wise to seek support from a health professional before taking on a new exercise regime. Wash your feet everyday Keeping your feet clean and dry will help prevent infection. Make sure you take extra care to dry between your toes to prevent fungal infections and soft corns. Moisturise your feet regularly Diabetes can affect the nerves that control the sweat response and the small foot muscles of the feet. This may cause the feet to become dry and change shape over time. Moisturising your feet will help maintain soft skin which is less likely to form callus or crack, minimising the chance of infection. Get regular foot care and advice If you can’t reach your feet to cut your toenails, please come see us at Hills District Podiatry. It is important to keep your nails in good condition. It is also important to wear good socks and shoes at all times. The shoes should be a good size and fit. If you have any questions about footwear or if you are not sure if your shoes fit correctly, seek advice from a podiatrist.