Diabetes and Foot Problems
Anybody can get common foot problems. But for diabetic people the common foot problems can lead to infections and serious complication. You need to be watchful of such issues.
Athlete’s foot is a fungus it causes itching, redness, and cracking. Germs can enter through the cracks of your skin and cause infections. There are pills and cream available to treat athlete’s foot. Consult your doctor if you see this not slowing down.
Nail fungal infection
Nails that are infected with a fungus may become yellowish brown, thick and brittle, and may separate from the rest of the nail. Nail crumble may also possible. Generally the shoe might help the fungal growth. There is always a risk of fungal infection with an injury to the nail. Fungal nail infections are difficult to treat. External treatments may work for a few fungal nail problems. Internal medications (pills) may be needed. As part of the treatment the damaged nail tissue may be removed.
Blisters can form when your shoes rub the same spot on your foot. This is pretty common with a new shoes. Sometimes blisters can become infected. When treating blisters, it’s important not to “pop” them. The skin covering the blister helps protect it from infection. Use an antibacterial cream and clean, soft bandages to help protect the skin and prevent infection.
A callus is a build-up of hard skin, usually underneath the foot. Calluses are caused by an uneven distribution of weight, generally on the bottom of the forefoot or heel. Calluses also can be caused by skin abnormality. The fitting of your shoes may cause Calluses. In general a bit of callus formation on the sole of the foot is common. Taking proper care if you have a callus is required. After your bath or shower, use a pumice stone to gently remove the build-up of tissue. Use cushioned pads and insoles in your shoes something similar to Dr.scholls. The important thing to remember is DO NOT try to cut the callus with a sharp object. It will infect more and may cause nerve damages.
A corn is a build-up of hard skin near a bony area of a toe or between toes. In general you will see this on your ancel. Corns may be the result of pressure from shoes that rub against the toes or cause friction between the toes. After your bath or shower, use a pumice stone to gently remove the build-up of tissue. You may better off not to use over counter medication to dissolve corns and don’t cut it using sharp object.
A bunion forms when your big toe angles in toward the second toe. Often, the spot where your big toe joins the rest of the foot becomes red and callused. This area also may begin to stick out and become hard. Probably it is genetical too. wearing high-heeled shoes with narrow toes may be the most common cause of Bunions. These shoes put pressure on the big toe, pushing it toward the second toe. A device also may be used to separate the big and second toes.If the bunion cause a sever pain, surgery might be inevitable.
Dry skin can crack, which can allow germs to enter. Use moisturizing soaps and lotions to help keep your skin moist and soft.
A foot ulcer is a deep sore, which can become infected. Foot ulcers can result from minor scrapes, cuts that heal slowly or from the rubbing of shoes that do not fit well. Early intervention is important in treatment. Ask your doctor for advice on how to best care for your wound.
A hammertoe is a toe that is bent because of a weakened muscle. The weakened muscle makes the tendons (tissues that connect muscles to bone) shorter, causing the toes to curl under the feet. Hammertoes can cause problems with walking and can lead to other foot problems, such as calluses, blisters, and sores. Splinting and corrective footwear can help in treating them. In severe cases, surgery to the toe may be necessary.
Ingrown toenails occur when the edges of the nail grow into the skin. The edge of the nail may cut into the skin, causing redness, swelling, pain, drainage, and infection. The most common cause of ingrown toenails is pressure from shoes. Other causes include improperly trimmed nails, crowding of the toes and repeated trauma to the feet from activities such as running, walking, or doing aerobics. Keeping your toenails properly trimmed is the best way to prevent ingrown toenails. If you have a persistent problem or if you have a nail infection, you may need a doctor’s care.
Plantar warts look like calluses on the ball of the foot or on the heel. They may appear to have small pinholes or tiny black spots in the center. The warts are usually painful and may develop singly or in clusters. Plantar warts are caused by a virus that infects the outer layer of skin on the soles of the feet. It is important to know NOT to use over-the-counter medications.
How To Prevent These Foot Problems
- Wash your feet in lukewarm water every day, using a mild soap. Soaking your feet is not a good idea. Nerve damage could affect your hands so test the water with elbow. Dry your feet well, including between the toes.
- Check your feet every day for redness, calluses, sores, blisters, or any of the other such problems listed above. If you have poor blood flow, it is especially important to do a daily foot check.
- Keep the skin on your feet moist by applying lotion after you wash and dry your feet. Do not put lotion between your toes.
- Check your toenails once a week. Trim your toenails with a nail clipper straight across. Do not round off the corners of toenails or cut down on the sides of the nails. After clipping, smooth the toenails with a nail file.
- Always check the inside of shoes to make sure that no objects are left inside by mistake.
- Always wear closed-toed shoes or slippers. Do not wear sandals and do not walk barefoot, even around the house.
- Always wear socks or stockings. Wear socks or stockings that fit your feet well and have soft elastic.
- Wear shoes that fit well. Buy shoes made of canvas or leather and break them in slowly. Extra wide shoes are also available in specialty stores that will allow for more room for the foot for people with foot deformities.
- Protect your feet from heat and cold. Wear shoes at the beach or on hot pavement. Wear socks at night if your feet get cold.
- Keep the blood flowing to your feet. Put your feet up when sitting, wiggle your toes and move your ankles several times a day, and don’t cross your legs for long periods of time.
- If you smoke, stop smoking. Smoking can make blood flow problems worse.
- If you have a foot problem that gets worse or won’t heal, contact your doctor for advice and treatment.
- Smooth corns and calluses with a pumice stone. Do this after your bath or shower, when your skin is soft. Move the pumice stone in only one direction.
- Make sure your diabetes doctor examines your feet during each check-up. An annual foot exam should be performed that includes an inspection of the skin, a check of the temperature of your feet, and an assessment of the sensation to the foot.
- See your podiatrist (foot doctor) every two to three months for check-ups, even if you don’t have any foot problems.