How To Care For Diabetic Foot At Home

Imbalances in blood glucose levels affect the foot health of diabetes patients and increase the risk of wounds and amputations
How To Care For Diabetic Foot At Home

Last update: 30 May, 2022

The complications experienced as a result of high glucose levels can reduce blood flow to the lower extremities of you body. This deteriorates your arteries and nerves in your feet.

The problem can develop gradually, especially when you don’t regulate your blood sugar.

That’s why it’s essential to adopt a series of measures to care for diabetic foot at home.

As a result, the area becomes less sensitive and the likelihood of ulcers, cracks or other wounds increases, and these can be the sources of dangerous infections.

So, how can you care for diabetic foot to prevent complications? Keep in mind the following recommendations.

What is diabetic foot?

diabetic foot

Having above normal blood sugar levels causes many health complications. Among these, and one of the most common ones is diabetic foot.

This condition can originate from a reduction in the blood flow in the legs (vasculopathy) or from problems with the nerves (neuropathy).

Both problems lead to a series of symptoms which affect quality of life. After all, the patient may lose a significant proportion of their sensitivity and is at risk of wounds that can take a long time to heal.

These symptoms do vary depending on the severity of the condition. However, it’s essential to take care of it and monitor it to prevent it from getting worse.

Not taking care of this condition can lead to ulcers and infections. If they can’t be controlled, they end up requiring the foot to be amputated.

See also: 7 Clues for Detecting Diabetes Early

Advice for treating diabetic foot at home

According to the data from the World Health Organization, more than 80% of cases of foot amputation due to diabetic foot could be prevented with basic treatment and care.

Getting medical attention for the underlying diabetes is the main action to prevent these complications. However, as a complementary measure, it’s also important to adopt some habits that reduce the risks.

It’s essential to do everything possible to prevent injuries to your feet. After all, the wounds take a long time to heal and can become the entry point for infections. Also, these care habits should become permanent because, even if there are no wounds or visible symptoms, the risk is still high.

Check your feet every day

Check your feet every day

First of all, checking your feet daily enables you to detect any abnormalities that need special treatment. So, even if there’s no obvious problem, it’s important to dedicate time to your feet.

Watch out for symptoms like:

  • Sores or ulcers
  • Blisters or cracks
  • Calluses or deformities
  • Bruises or inflamed veins

Wash and disinfect

One of the basic actions to reduce the risk of foot infections is to wash your feet every day. Do this with products that help to disinfect them.

This measure helps eliminate bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms. As you can imagine, these can cause more serious problems if wounds do appear.

Avoid smoking

Avoid smoking

Tobacco is one of the factors that can accelerate the narrowing of the arteries. As a result, all diabetes patients should avoid smoking.

The toxins found in cigarettes affect the oxygen supply to your feet. Plus, they can contribute to complications due to the lack of blood flow.

Use moisturizing products

Next, to treat diabetic foot, it’s important to acquire moisturizing products which can help to protect the skin.

Applying them daily helps prevent calluses and cracked skin, thus minimizing the risk of infection.

Cut your nails

Cut your nails

Diabetes patients’ nails should be cut in a straight line to prevent them from growing into the skin. They should be cut in a way that does not damage the corners of the nails nor the cuticles.

Wear comfortable shoes

Wearing comfortable shoes that allow air to flow around your feet is one of the best measures to treat diabetic foot. This helps prevent inflammation and infections.

Overall, it’s ideal for the insides of the shoes to be made of smooth materials. They should be without parts that stick out, so that the skin can breathe easily.

Avoid high-impact activities

Daily physical exercise is one of the habits that helps to regulate blood sugar levels in diabetes patients.

However, it’s essential to make sure that the chosen activities do not have a big impact on your feet.

To prevent calluses or wounds, it is best to choose activities like:

  • Swimming
  • Cycling
  • Yoga
  • Pilates

In conclusion, it’s very important for all sufferers of high blood sugar levels to adopt measures to care for diabetic foot. Together with medical check-ups, these measures can prevent more serious situations.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.