Every 17 seconds, someone learns that they have diabetes - with type 2 diabetes being the most common diagnosis. This disease affects not only the person’s health but also their feet. Diabetes is the leading cause of amputation in the world, so it’s essential to recognize the signs of diabetic foot problems and seek treatment early.
Fortunately, there are plenty of tools available that can help you manage this condition and prevent future aches. Keep reading for tips on diabetes foot care and how to protect your feet.
It's difficult to detect early signs of foot problems as a diabetic, especially if you don’t know what to look for. A person with diabetes has about a 25% chance of developing a foot problem in their life. Because serious foot damage can occur without warning, it’s important for diabetic patients to recognize the symptoms and seek help before the condition worsens.
The most common symptom of diabetic foot problems is a tingling or pins-and-needles sensation in the feet. Other common symptoms include extreme sensitivity to touch and slow-healing wounds on your feet (which could lead to infections). Some patients experience no feeling in their feet at all.
Diabetes and foot care should go hand in hand. Diabetic foot pain is difficult to treat at home, and for treatment to be successful, it’s important that you get all the facts. Here are a few ways to treat your aching feet.
Choose the Right Footwear
As a first step, wear therapeutic shoes or shoe inserts to relieve the pressure on your arches. These help prevent pain and stop sores from developing on the bottoms of your feet.
Keep Your Feet Protected
Always wear shoes and socks when you’re out of the house, even if you think it’s going to be a quick trip. If you have an open sore on your foot and don’t wear shoes, it could become infected by bacteria outside and require surgery to heal.
Improve Blood Circulation
Elevate your feet as often as possible, particularly after standing for a long time. This will reduce swelling and improve blood flow.
Warm showers are also effective at boosting blood flow and helping with pain.
Visit Your Healthcare Provider
Finally, the most important step in foot care for type 2 diabetics is seeing your podiatrist. You should visit your foot doctor at least once a year, but if you’re having foot problems, make an appointment immediately.
Your podiatrist can help you treat any injuries or infections quickly, so they don’t become more serious and require more extensive treatment later.
Start With the Basics of Diabetes Foot Care
Care is the most important thing for diabetics with foot problems. If you have any of these symptoms, it’s important that you don’t try to self-diagnose or treat them on your own. Your doctor can help you find the right diabetes foot care plan for your condition.
But one thing is certain: they’ll probably advise you to get more comfortable shoes. Apex Foot, a leading footwear provider since 1946, offers a variety of diabetic orthopedics to treat your foot pain. Explore our diabetic footwear that’s made to reduce foot pain and increase your comfort.