Diabetes is a disease in which your body is not able to process the glucose in your blood, which results in high levels of blood sugar. One complication of the disease is called “peripheral vascular disease.” It affects blood vessels that are away from the heart and leads to reduced circulation. Because your feet are at the lowest part of your body, they already have low blood flow; peripheral vascular disease complicates the problem and can lead to unhealed infections and foot ulcers.
Another complication of diabetes is nerve damage, or neuropathy, which can lead to loss of feeling in the feet and also increase the risk for developing sores.
Your cells need food in order to function, and that food is glucose, a sugar. Insulin in a hormone produced by your pancreas that removes the sugar from your blood and gets it into your cells. Diabetes is a disease in which your body either doesn’t produce insulin, doesn’t produce enough insulin (both classified type 1), or cannot use insulin effectively (type 2). The result is insufficient energy for the body and an increased risk of infections, neuropathy (nerve damage), and other diseases such as heart attacks or strokes.
Because of decreased circulation and possible nerve damage, you may not feel if you have cuts or sores on your feet or see that they’re not healing properly; you’re at risk of those sores tuning into painful and dangerous ulcers.
A board-certified podiatrist helps ensure that your feet stay healthy – and the rest of you too. All of the podiatrists at City Podiatry are highly qualified, board-certified doctors who help you develop a treatment plan that includes the following elements.
It is very important that you develop a habit of checking your feet often, so you can catch an issue before it worsens. Examine your feet every day, and look for any changes that might indicate a problem, such as:
Carefully wash your feet every day in warm water with mild soap. Make sure to dry them carefully, even between your toes, in order to avoid harboring any bacteria or fungi. Diabetes can easily lead to infections, and keeping your feet clean can help prevent harmful microbes from taking hold.
Use caution when cutting your toenails, especially if your nails are thick. Clippers are sharp, and you don’t want to cut into your skin when you are trying to cut your nails. If you need any assistance with nail trimming, ask your podiatrist for assistance.
Diabetes causes reduced blood flow and nerve damage, which puts you at risk for sores on your feet. You need a board-certified podiatrist on your diabetic care team to help you develop a good foot treatment plan and monitor your foot health. Call us at 917-810-4204 or click online to set up an appointment with the team at City Podiatry today.