Diabetes can pose a double threat to your feet. Firstly, it can reduce blood flow to your feet, depriving them of essential oxygen and nutrients. This hampers the healing process for blisters, sores, and cuts. Secondly, diabetic nerve damage, known as peripheral neuropathy, can lead to numbness in your feet. This lack of sensation increases the risk of unnoticed cuts, blisters, and infections. If left untreated, these can progress to severe infections and even amputation. Shockingly, individuals with diabetes face a 10 times higher likelihood of toe or lower leg amputation due to this reality.
Diabetic peripheral neuropathy can also cause sharp pain in your feet, making you hypersensitive to even the slightest touch, like the touch of bed sheets. Thankfully, with a bit of Tender Loving Care, you can significantly reduce foot problems associated with diabetes.
Here are 10 Tips to Protect Your Feet:
1. Check both feet daily. Examine your feet thoroughly each day, including the spaces between your toes. Blisters and infections can lurk there, and due to diabetic neuropathy, you might not feel them until they worsen. If checking your own feet is challenging, seek assistance from a family member.
2. Wash with warm, not hot, water. Gently wash your feet daily with warm water, ensuring it's not too hot. Since you might not sense heat with your feet, test the water with your hands first. Avoid prolonged soaking, as waterlogged sores are harder to heal. Dry your feet promptly and make sure to gently dry between your toes.