17 Ways to Avoid Diabetic Foot Problems

Here are some tips, compiled from information supplied by the American Diabetes Association, on how diabetics can help avoid diabetic foot problems:stk79557cor

  1. Get a thorough foot exam at least once a year from a healthcare professional, more often if you have neuropathy or other diabetes complications.
  2. Keep your blood sugar under control.
  3. Wash your feet every day with warm water and dry them carefully, especially between the toes.
  4. Put lotion on your feet, but never between your toes, within 10 minutes after your shower to keep the skin from drying and cracking.
  5. Don’t put your feet in hot water; test the water first.
  6. Never go barefoot.
  7. Avoid using hot water bottles, heating pads or electric blankets.
  8. Cut your toenails straight across and file the edges. Do not rip off hangnails.
  9. Choose comfortable, supportive, flat shoes. Break in shoes slowly.
  10. Choose socks carefully. They should not have seams or other bumpy areas. Pull your socks on gently to prevent ripping a toenail. Choose thick, cotton socks.
  11. Don’t smoke, which only increases circulation problems.
  12. Don’t cut off blood flow to your feet by wearing tight socks, panty hose or garters.
  13. Check inside your shoes before wearing them. Make sure there are no rocks, nails or other objects inside and that the shoe itself is not rough or has torn lining.
  14. Check your feet, and between your toes, every day for sores, calluses, red spots, cuts, swelling and blisters. Use a mirror or ask someone for help if you can’t see the bottom of your feet.
  15. Don’t use chemicals on corns, calluses or warts. Over-the-counter products are often too strong for diabetics and can burn your feet.
  16. Do not cut corns or calluses yourself; have your doctor do it.
  17. Have any suspicious spots checked immediately by a foot care specialist.