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Why Diabetics Should Pay Extra Attention to Their Foot Care

Why Diabetics Should Pay Extra Attention to Their Foot Care

Foot care is an essential part of living well with diabetes. That’s because diabetes can cause foot problems that can quickly evolve into life-threatening conditions. This makes it crucial to have a podiatrist as a key part of your diabetes management team. 


Board-certified podiatrist Dr. David Biss leads the team at Concord Podiatry and specializes in preventing, diagnosing, and treating diabetic foot complications. He can help you keep your feet in top shape. Here’s how paying extra attention to your feet reduces your risk of developing serious complications.

How diabetes affects your feet

Taking special care of your feet is a must when you have diabetes. Even when you control your blood sugar well, having diabetes increases the risk of foot complications, primarily due to two major factors: nerve damage (neuropathy) and poor blood circulation. 


Neuropathy causes a reduction of feeling in your feet over time. This means injuries, blisters, or sores can easily go unnoticed. Meanwhile, poor circulation slows wound healing, which increases your risk of infection and ulcers.

A small cut can turn into a chronic open wound, which, if left untreated, can lead to serious health problems. 

Preventing diabetic foot complications

Once foot problems set in, prompt and aggressive treatment is necessary to limit damage and reduce your risk of life-threatening complications. Dr. Biss can guide you on how to take care of your feet daily to avoid foot problems. 

This includes advice on how to trim your nails properly, the importance of wearing shoes that fit well to avoid blisters, and how to recognize signs of potential problems. Dr. Biss can also recommend therapeutic shoes and custom orthotics to reduce the risk of foot-related issues.

Managing existing foot problems

If you’re currently dealing with foot issues, it’s crucial to visit a foot and ankle specialist routinely. Issues like corns and calluses generally aren’t serious issues in people without diabetes, but they can cause major problems for patients living with diabetes.

Dr. Biss can evaluate your feet and discuss the most appropriate treatment plan to manage any existing issues to prevent them from progressing to severe complications. 

Keeping your feet healthy

Here are some of the best ways to care for your feet:

Check your feet regularly

Because you may have reduced sensation and circulation in the feet, it’s vital to make regular foot checks a part of your daily routine. This includes a thorough examination of the top, bottom, and sides of your feet, in between your toes, and behind your heels. 

Look out for any signs of skin breaks, hard skin, bumps, bruises, or injuries. 

Practice good foot hygiene

Wash your feet daily with soap and warm water, ensuring that the water isn't too hot. After washing, dry your feet thoroughly, especially between your toes, to prevent infections like athlete's foot.

Keep feet moisturized

Due to loss of blood supply and nerve damage, your feet are prone to dryness, leading to cracks that can serve as entry points for infection. Regularly applying emollient creams, particularly those containing urea, can help you avoid dryness. 

Urea-based creams not only improve skin hydration but also help in breaking down excess keratin in scaly skin. For daily maintenance, a 10% urea cream is recommended, while a stronger 25% cream is effective in treating calluses.

Choose the right footwear

Ill-fitting shoes can cause a range of problems, from nail damage to blisters and calluses — all increasing your risk of infection. It's wise to get your feet professionally measured and choose shoes that fit well. If you have specific needs, specialized footwear can provide additional protection.

Act fast on injuries

Having diabetes means treating even the most minor cuts with utmost seriousness. Quick action can prevent complications, so it's important to address any foot injury, no matter how small, without delay.

In diabetes management, every step counts, and taking care of your feet contributes to maintaining your overall health and well-being. If you’re looking for an experienced podiatrist who can help you care for your feet, contact Concord Podiatry in Plymouth and Concord, New Hampshire, today.

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