Of the 16 million people in the United States with diabetes, approximately 15 percent will suffer from diabetic foot ulcers at some point in their lifetime. These tips from the American Diabetes Association can help prevent problems with your feet.
- Keep your blood sugar in control.
- Wash your feet every day. Dry them carefully, especially between the toes.
- Check your feet every day for sores, calluses, red spots, cuts, swelling, and blisters.
- Choose socks without seams or other bumpy areas.
- Check inside your shoes for any foreign objects or tears before wearing them.
- Cut your toenails straight across and file the edges. Do not rip off hangnails.
- Do not cut off blood flow to your feet.
- Avoid placing your feet into hot water. Never use hot water bottles, heating pads, or electric blankets. You could burn your feet without realizing it.
- Never walk barefoot.
Of people with diabetes who enter the hospital, about one in five do so for treatment of foot problems. However, with proper care, many foot wounds can be prevented. If you have diabetes, talk to Surgical Podiatrist Dr. Lynette Meece about the special care your feet need.