If you suffer from diabetes, you likely know that high blood sugar levels can do damage to nerves, which can lead to calluses, blisters, ulcers, and most commonly, neuropathy. According to the American Diabetes Association, about half of all diabetics will experience neuropathy, so it’s important to know how to properly care for your feet.
"A little attention on a daily basis can help prevent major complication with your feet in the future," says Geoffrey Habershaw, DPM, Chief of Podiatry at Boston Medical Center. Here, he provides some helpful tips to ensure good foot health.
- Check your feet every day
Nerve damage can make it hard to feel when something might be going wrong with your feet. Inspect your feet regularly, and look for color changes, sores, blisters, or cracked skin. If you do not have anyone to help you, place a mirror on the floor. If you notice a problem, contact your doctor right away.
- Take care of your toenails
If you can see and reach your toenails, trim them when needed. Always cut straight across, avoiding the edges, and use a file to smooth.
- Make sure you have the right shoes
Always wear shoes that are comfortable and supportive, and preferably laced or with Velcro. They should be a finger width longer than the longest toe. Avoid walking barefoot to reduce your risk for infection.
- Keep your feet dry
Keeping your feet as dry as often as possible, especially in between the toes, since moisture can lead to infection. Remember to towel off right away after bathing, and change your socks often, especially in the warm weather.
- See a podiatrist regularly
Seeing your foot doctor on a regular basis can help prevent diabetic foot complications. Keep your feet healthy!
To make an appointment with a podiatrist (foot specialist) at BMC, please contact us at 617.414.6840.