Diabetic Foot Care
SCHEDULE NOW(SAME DAY OPTIONS OFTEN AVAILABLE)
23 Spring Street, Suite B
Scarborough, Maine 04074
O-207-774-0028 F-207-774-0063MAPS & DIRECTIONS
Diabetes, an autoimmune disease that affects millions of Americans, poses special risks to your feet. The condition slows your circulation and dulls your nerves, especially in feet and toes far from your head and central nervous system. This double whammy not only makes it harder for you to detect cuts, scrapes, and other injuries, but it also restricts your body’s ability to heal itself and fight infection. If unnoticed or untreated, even minor injuries develop into significant ulcers. You could even require an amputation. That’s why it’s so crucial to stay on top of this disease.
At-Home Inspection Is Important
The most important aspect of diabetic foot care is how you take care of your feet at home. You see your feet every day—we don’t. Catching problems early, and seeking help promptly, is the best way to avoid serious complications, such as amputation of a toe or foot.
Inspect your feet carefully and thoroughly at least once per day. Use a mirror or enlist a loved one if you have any difficulty seeing the bottom of your feet. Any cuts, scrapes, blisters, swelling, or any skin or nail issues should be reported to your doctor.
Treating Your Feet Right
To minimize the risk of infection, keep your feet clean, dry, and protected. Wash your lower limbs gently in warm water and dry thoroughly, including between the toes. A pumice stone can be used to carefully and gently scrub calluses and dry, dead skin. Use a moisturizer (everywhere but between the toes) to keep dryness and cracking at bay.
Be careful when trimming nails—always cut straight across from corner to corner, and not too short. Doing so reduces the chances of developing an ingrown toenail, which can be painful and easily become infected, or lead to fungal toenails.
Keep your feet protected by always wearing a comfortable, supportive pair of shoes that fits you well whenever you leave home, and check the inside of your shoes before putting them on to make sure they do not contain foreign objects. Although any pair of shoes will protect you from stepping on foreign objects, shoes that don’t fit you well can lead to sores, blisters, corns, or other conditions due to painful friction.
Managing Your Condition
Taking care of yourself and managing your diabetes will keep your circulation stronger and your nerves healthier, which in turn will help protect your feet. Carefully managing your sugar levels, maintaining a good diet, refraining from smoking or alcohol abuse, and getting plenty of exercise is good for your whole body, including your lower extremities.
How Lighthouse Foot and Ankle Can Help
Our office provides a full suite of diabetic foot care, from yearly foot checks to diabetic toenail trimming, corn and callus removal, custom orthotics, wound care, and more. Whether you have an ulcer that needs debridement, or you’re just looking for tips on selecting a good pair of shoes, Dr. Michele Kurlanski and the staff at Lighthouse Foot and Ankle Center are here to help.
If you notice any problems during your regular foot checks, including swelling, itchiness, redness, blisters, or other abnormalities, call Dr. Michele Kurlanski at (207) 774-0028 today. You don’t have to manage diabetes alone—let us help you stay healthy and on your feet.
Photo Credit: Michaelaw via FreeImages.com