With diabetes comes a much higher risk of other complications developing such as blindness, cardiovascular problems, and even limb amputation. All of these risks increase significantly if the underlying issue, diabetes, is left untreated.
Because diabetics are prone to damaged nerve endings, especially in the feet, a podiatrist is a key component of the care team. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with diabetes, there should be constant communication between the patient and a qualified podiatrist. Here are five things that are very important for diabetics to discuss with their podiatrist:
Diabetics can benefit from custom designed footwear that is meant to promote good circulation, which is important for maintaining healthy feet. Your podiatrist can suggest what footwear to buy, and what you should pass on. You may be told to avoid flip-flops and other open toed shoes. Poorly fitting or unprotected shoes are one of the biggest culprits of diabetic foot complications, often leading to red spots, sore spots, blisters, etc. Get custom orthotics here, or visit SureFit to see our inventory of diabetic shoes.
2. Any Foot Injuries Experienced
Another issue diabetics have is their inability to heal. When a foot injury goes unnoticed or undiagnosed, it can often lead to pressure sores and other serious complications. If you notice any type of injury or pain stemming from your feet or ankles, contact a podiatrist and get seen as soon as possible.
3. A Loss of Feeling in Your Feet
One issue that arises from diabetes includes a loss of feeling in the feet. This is called, and can cause diabetics to miss potential problems developing on the feet, even minor ones such as cuts, scrapes and blisters. It is also these minor ones that often lead to the major amputations, so it is imperative you check and clean your feet daily.
4. Changes in the Skin on Your Feet
Diabetes also impairs the foots’ ability to sweat and produce oils that lubricate the skin. This can lead to abnormal pressure on the skin, bones, and joints of the foot during walking and other activities. Pay attention to changes in the skin on your feet and ankles, and discuss them with your podiatrist. He or she may be able to suggest home remedies, foot soaks, or medical-grade lotions before cuts lead to open wounds.
5. Corns and Calluses
These can be frustrating for just about anyone, but more so for diabetics. Removing corns and calluses in a common fashion can be dangerous for diabetics because of the potential for open wounds. The safest route is visiting a podiatrist and letting them remove any corns and calluses you develop.
Again, if you are a diabetic, an ongoing care plan with a qualified podiatrist is vital. Midwest Podiatry Centers is your local thought leader, and here to answer your questions, help prevent or treat wounds, sores, or other complications, and diagnose any foot or ankle complications that arise. We have several locations in the Metro area - including Richfield, Minneapolis, Blaine, Saint Anthony, and Vadnais Heights.
Call our office at (612) 788-8778, or visit www.midwestpodiatrycenters.com to schedule an appointment.