Foot Care in Diabetes

Nearly half of the patients with diabetes experience some form of nerve damage to the feet and legs.  They may feel tingling (pins and needles) sensation, numbness, leg cramps or even pain.  The combination of nerve damage (peripheral neuropathy) and poor circulation (peripheral arterial disease) increases the risk of diabetic foot ulcer and even gangrene.  The risk of nerve damage increase if you have the following risk factors;

Click to view Pfizer video on Foot Health in Diabetes

Tips for Taking Care of your Foot in Diabetes or Peripheral Artery Disease

DO wear shoes that are comfortable and fit well

DO regular feet-friendly exercises like walking or swimming

DO check your shoes before putting them on, to make sure there are no stones or insects inside

DO try to wear socks in your shoes or get custom-fitted podiatry shoes

DO trim your toenails regularly

DON’T walk barefoot outside the house or in the garden

DON’T wear shoes which constrict your feet such as pointed toes or high heels

DON’T wear sandals which expose your toes

Click to view Pharmacist Conversation video on How to take care of diabetic feet

Make it a Routine to Wash and Check your feet every day before sleep. Look out for the following;

  • Red spots or cuts
  • Sores or blisters
  • Swelling
  • In-growing or infected toenail

After washing your feet, always pat dry especially between your toes.  You can apply moisturising lotion to keep your feet soft and prevent the skin from drying and cracking but do not apply between your toes.  Have your feet examined regularly by your Nurse, Doctor or Diabetic Healthcare Practitioner regularly.

Image AAFP

Footwear Advice

Risk StatusActions
All diabetes footUse footwear that fits, protects and accommodates the shape of your feet
Moderate to high riskSee a podiatrist to get footwear with a) custom-fitted in-shoe orthoses or insoles b) off-loading orthoses or insoles with healed plantar ulcer
Foot ulcersOff-loading devices to help ulcer to heal

See your Doctor, Nurse or Podiatrist for treatment advice

Disclaimer. TELEME blog posts contains general information about health conditions and treatments. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information is not advice and should not be treated as such. 

If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention from your doctor or other professional healthcare providers. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.

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