The fall is a busy time of year, as students are resuming classes and many of us are heading back to the “real world” after our summer holidays. The fact remains, as temperatures drop and flu season hits, people with underlying health conditions are more at risk. For instance, one thing that we don’t often make the connection between is Diabetes and foot health.
Diabetes treatment has expanded and improved throughout history. There are plenty of ways to treat the Metabolic disorder, notably by way of a computer powered pump that reads your blood levels and knows when the system needs more insulin. In the past, diabetes was a very difficult disease to treat. In fact, it almost always lead to severe complications. It is a testament to modern medical technology that we’ve come so far.
Despite this, diabetes can greatly affect one’s feet; the disease can cause nerve damage in your feet and lower legs, which means that when you get a minor cut or sore on your feet, your Pain receptors may not pass this information along to your brain. Therefore, diabetes patients should take extra care in the fall, and eventually the winter, when it comes to their foot health.
Risk Factors For Diabetes Patients in Fall and Winter
- Low temperatures: Those who suffer from diabetes are at risk of developing foot ulcers in colder, wet conditions.
- Poorly designed Winter boots: Those who suffer from diabetes are more likely to experience foot ulcers, blisters and cuts if they wear low quality footwear.
- Snow/Wetness: Dampness in the feet can cause bacterial build up.
Diabetes patients should avoid foot ulcers at all costs. Foot ulcers have the potential to progress dangerously, as observed below. You should seek immediate treatment if you think you may have a foot ulcer.
Diabetes And Making Foot Care a Priority
If you have diabetes, you should make foot care a priority and take it seriously. For example, you can put together a foot care kit consisting of:
- Toenail trimmers
- Nail file
- Hand mirror (for better visibility on the bottom of the foot)
- Warm socks (incase temperature drops)
You should also be sure to check your feet for:
- Whiter, pale skin – indicates dampness
These preventative steps will work wonders and are great ways to head off problems at the pass. Additionally, there are investments you can make that will greatly improve your quality of life. Compression stockings and custom made orthotics can work wonders for diabetes patients in the colder months.
Diabetes and Compression Stockings
If you experience severe swelling because of a diabetes related infection, you should definitely invest in a pair of Compression stockings. Compression stockings need to be custom fitted to provide the precise amount of pressure to stimulate blood circulation. Many people with diabetes swear by compression stockings and wear them all year round to promote strong blood flow in the lower legs. Compression stockings last about six months before they need to be replaced.
Diabetes, Custom Orthotics and Orthopaedic Footwear
Many people with diabetes praise the benefits of Custom orthotics, as well as Orthopaedic footwear. If your shoes are too tight, it is going to create problems. Your shoes should come with lots of room (wide, high toe box), so that the foot can breathe and blood can flow freely. You also should avoid buying shoes that are too big just for the extra space. Your feet will slide around, eventually causing problems for your feet, back and knees. Finding the right shoes and having the right orthotics are crucial to promoting good foot health, and if you have diabetes, promoting good foot health is essential.
We Can Help!
Diabetes can be a lot to manage, so let us take care of any related foot concerns. Whether you’re on the mild or severe side of the spectrum, you can rest easy knowing we’re able and happy to solve all your foot care needs.
Call us at 416-769-FEET (3338) or Book Your Assessment Today!