Diabetes increases the risk of skin and foot infections. Diabetes can damage the vascular (blood supply) and Nerve supply to your feet.
Damage due to diabetes makes you less likely to feel pain, so you might not notice a cut or bruise. And due to poor blood flow if the foot or skin is injured, wounds may heal slowly. If the wound is not treated correctly, severe infection may occur, leading to gangrene and amputation.
A Diabetes Foot Assessment should be carried out by your podiatrist every 12 months. At this appointment it would include:
- A Vascular assessment including a Doppler Ultrasound to check your blood flow.
- A Neurological assessment to check the nerve supply to your feet.
- A General Treatment including Nail cutting, Callus and Corn Debridement.
- Diabetes Foot Care advice.
- A full report will be sent to your GP.
If you have Diabetes here are a few HEALTHY FOOT TIPS that you can start doing now to help prevent further problems.
1. Check your feet every day
- You may have serious foot problems, but feel no pain. Check your feet for cuts, sores, red spots, swelling and infected toenails. Find a time (evening is best) to check your feet each day. Make checking your feet part of your everyday routine.
- If you have trouble bending over to see your feet, use a plastic mirror to help. You also can ask a family member or caregiver to help you.
- Make sure to call your healthcare team right away if a cut, sore, blister, or bruise is not healing looks red or swollen.
2. Wash Your Feet Everyday
- Wash your feet in warm, NOT hot, water.
- Before bathing or showering, test the water to make it is not too hot. You can use a thermometer (90 degrees to 95 degrees Fahrenheit is safe) or your elbow.
- Dry your feet well. Be sure to dry between your toes.
3. Keep the skin soft and smooth.
- Rub a thin coat of skin lotion, cream on the tops and bottoms of your feet.
- Do not put cream between your toes because this might cause an infection.
4. Corns and calluses
- lf you have corns and calluses, check with your podiatrist about the best way to care for them.
- Do not cut corns and calluses yourself. Don’t use razor blades, corn plasters, or liquid corn an callus removers-they can damage your skin.
5. Trim your toenails when needed
- Have a podiatrist trim your toenails if you can’t see well, if you cannot reach your feet, if your toenails are thick or yellowed, or if your nails curve and grow into the skin.
- If your toenails are ok and if you can see and reach your toenails easily, trim them with clippers after you wash and dry your feet.
- Trim toenails straight across and smooth them with an emery board or nail file.
- Do NOT cut into the corners of the toenail, this can lead to ingrown nails and cause infections.
Please contact us on (02) 4620 8877 and book in for a DIABETES ASSESSMENT if:
- You have diabetes and have not had your blood flow and nerves tested in your feet
- You are worried about diabetic foot care
- You have foot pain or numbness
- You have a wound or cut that is not healing
South West Podiatry Clinic is open from Monday to Saturday. We have Parking on site and Wheelchair access, our Reception Staff can advise on transport options to our clinic.
We are providers for Patients of Veteran Affairs, Enhanced Primary Care (EPC) Plans, HICAPS for private health fund rebates and Workers Compensation/Third Party Insurance.
Call us today at (02) 4620 8877.