Expert tips to prevent injuries

According to the Mexican Association of Chiropedists and Podiatrists, foot care and hygiene is important, especially if a person suffers from diabetes, because they may be at risk of amputation. Having inflammation in this part of the body can be deadly.

To avoid injuries in people with diabetes it is important to perform a daily inspection. In addition, it is advisable to use suitable footwear, which must meet some requirements such as:

  • Load absorption through elastic insoles.
  • Expansion of the load by distribution of pressure in a larger area.
  • Modification of conflicting support zones.
The diabetic foot is one of the consequences derived from an advanced stage of this disease.
The diabetic foot is one of the consequences derived from an advanced stage of this disease. – Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The above, taking into account that the type of shoe should always be extra deep and wide; when there is no deformity, it will be associated with soft insoles to distribute the pressure and, if there is deformity, to rigid orthoses to reduce and distribute abnormal pressures. For example:

  • The Sports shoes that have these characteristics are the most suitable for walks.
  • Change socks and shoes twice a day.
  • Never walk without shoes. Wear wide slippers in places like the beach or pool.
  • Never use hot water bottles or electric pads to heat them.
  • Never use the resection of ingrown toenails or calluses. Go to the podiatrist

Additionally, there are other recommendations for foot care, some of which are:

  • The person should wash their feet every day with warm water (30 to 37 degrees)
  • Wash with neutral soap
Feet, foot care, foot fungus, diabetic foot, ulcers, circulation
The person with diabetic foot should wash their feet every day with warm water. – Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto
  • It is advisable not to leave your feet in the water for more than five minutes
  • You should wash the entire foot, without forgetting the area of ​​the sole and between the toes.
  • Dry your feet well, especially between the toes and avoid hurting or putting pressure on them
  • Keep them hydrated with lubricating cream or oil, giving a light massage on the sole, back and the entire knee
  • After washing your feet, you should examine them every day. The best way is sitting and with good light
  • To cut the nails it is necessary to go to a certified podiatrist
  • The cut of the nail should be horizontal and preferably after bathing, since the nails are softer.
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The Mexican Association specifies that people who should be more careful with their feet, in case they have diabetes, are those who smoke, have problems regulating their glucose, who lose sensation in their feet or who present joint mobility limitations due to the existence of bone deformities.

Other foot care tips

In addition to the tips mentioned above, there are other care that can be given to the feet of diabetics, some of them are:

  • Wear wide, comfortable and soft shoes to avoid internal friction.
  • Use seamless cotton socks.
  • Wash your feet every day with lukewarm or cold water and an acid pH soap.
  • Inspect feet daily to detect signs of injury as soon as possible (heels, plantar area, and interdigital area).
  • Pat dry carefully with the towel (you should avoid rubbing your feet).
dry feet
Gently pat dry with a towel – Photo: Getty Images
  • In case of dry skin, with calluses and cracks, apply emollient or moisturizing creams.
  • Calluses should preferably be treated by a podiatrist; You should not use keratolytic solutions.
  • Nails must be cut straight; it is better to use a nail file.
  • You should never walk barefoot on any type of surface.
  • Do not use hot compresses or electric heaters, to prevent the risk of burns.

Diabetic foot diagnosis

It is important to remember that early diagnosis of this condition is important, because more than half of these patients may be asymptomatic, and They are at higher risk of developing ulcers, infections, and amputations. A foot examination is recommended for all diabetic patients to detect polyneuropathy; annually, or more often if the person is at high risk for ulcers.

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