Diabetes is a metabolic disease in which the body is unable to produce enough insulin, resulting in high blood glucose levels. High blood glucose levels, in turn, can have a negative effect on many different parts of the body. Since blood flow to the extremities is often lower in diabetics, feet are one body part that is often adversely effected by diabetes. A podiatrist can specialize in diabetic foot care to help patients have healthy feet.
A foot doctor is an important part of your diabetes care team. This doctor can check your feet periodically to diagnose and treat any sores, or problems. They can also test your feet for numbness and check the pulses to see blood flow activity. In addition, a patient will often get advice on how to care for the feet at home on a daily basis. Home care advice can include:
• Inspect feet daily for sores, warts, corns, infections, etc.
• Wash the feet daily
• Always make sure feet are thoroughly dry
• Wear comfortable cotton socks
• Trim toenails straight across and not too short
• If skin is dry, use a light lotion or cream
• Always wear shoes and socks
• Avoid sitting with your legs crossed
• If you smoke, stop
• Get adequate exercise
• Choose shoes that fit properly
Diabetic patients should see a podiatrist at the first signs of any foot problems. Even small sores can be an issue because the lack of blood flow doesn’t allow for proper healing in many instances. The lower blood flow puts these individuals at greater risk for injury and infection. Infections that are left untreated can lead to amputation of the foot or leg.
Diabetic neuropathy is another risk. Nerves, especially in the lower extremities and feet can become damaged as a side effect of the diabetes. When this occurs, a person may not feel heat, cold, pain, or itching of the feet. Thus, infections, injuries, or other ailments can be easily missed if the feet are not examined regularly. Because of the slow healing of diabetics, unrecognized symptoms can lead to delayed diagnoses and treatments. Diabetic foot care is an essential part of the healthcare plan, and a foot doctor is the best for this job. Contact Dr. Brett Roeder in Mesa, AZ today for a consultation. You can also visit their website at http://www.GilbertFootSurgeons.com.