Foot Care and Diabetes
Diabetes can cause nerve damage that may reduce feeling in the feet. If this becomes very bad, it can lead to serious injuries and infections. If you have diabetes, self-testing devices can help monitor your feet. Test your feet every three months, or as directed by your doctor.
In addition to a self-testing device, there are other things people with diabetes can do to take care of their feet:
- Look for cuts or sores.
- Check for warning signs — redness, swelling, warmth, pain, dry cracks, bleeding corns or calluses, and tenderness.
- Wash feet daily and dry them carefully, especially between the toes.
- Use talcum powder.
- Do not cut corns or calluses — use a foot care specialist if needed.
- Keep toenails trimmed and smooth.
- Quickly treat dry skin or athlete's foot.
- Keep blood glucose levels under control.
Periodic foot exam by a doctor
- Get an annual exam for everyone with diabetes, or every three to six months for those at high risk.
- Take off your shoes and socks at every doctor’s visit.
- Ask for a risk evaluation.
- Wear shoes and socks at all times.
- Don't wear shoes and socks that are too tight.
- Wear well-cushioned shoes.
- Buy shoes that are roomy and "breathe."
- People diagnosed with foot problems may need special footwear.
If you have diabetes, foot care is key. Be sure to work with your doctor to help prevent and quickly treat any foot care issues that may arise.