Foot Care As a Diabetic
Our feet are the foundation of every stride we take, as the saying “Own the ground you walk on” rings true. Our feet give us our mobility, and allow us to take part in the everyday activities that we love. The American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) states that the foot of the average jogger hits the ground with two to three times the pressure of normal body weight. Therefore, have you ever taken the time to think about how essential your feet really are? It seems as if there is a consensus that feet are something people are not particularly fond of, however, it is time to start acknowledging the importance of our feet, and the value they have on our overall quality of life.
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a metabolic disease in which the body is unable to produce any or enough insulin, causing elevated levels of glucose in the blood. In other words, most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, for our bodies to use for energy. When someone is diabetic, the pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, does not produce enough insulin, which is what helps glucose get into the cells of our bodies.
How Diabetes Affects Our Feet
When you have diabetes, your feet need extra care and attention, even if they don’t hurt. Diabetes can affect the feet in several ways, which are often related to reduced blood flow. Symptoms include swelling, redness, a sore or wound and wound drainage. Diabetes can damage the nerve endings and blood vessels in your feet, causing lack of sensation making you less likely to notice when your feet are injured. This is known as neuropathy and can be caused by high blood sugar.
Diabetes and Foot Injury
Diabetes also can interfere with your body’s ability to fight infection. If you develop a minor foot injury, it could become an ulcer or develop into a serious infection. Ulcers can be found on the bottom of your feet or on the top or bottom of your toes.
Foot Injury Treatment
Treatment for diabetic foot conditions can progress from medicine to surgery, or even amputation, in the worst case. However, with good foot care you can prevent most problems and avoid treatment.
Find a Foot Doctor in Central Maryland
If you have any questions about how diabetes can affect the feet, call Orthopaedic Associates of Central Maryland to request an appointment with one of our podiatrists.