Diabetes foot pain is one of the most common problems you can have. Yet, most of the time, the feet are like the Rodney Dangerfield of our bodies. They get no respect. You simply take them for granted. However, when you have diabetes foot pain, you sometimes can’t think of anything else but your feet.
Like every other diabetes complication, foot pain starts and ends with poor blood sugar management. Blood sugar spikes lead to nerve damage, especially in the lower legs and feet. The damaged nerves make it very difficult for a diabetic to feel pain, heat and cold. Often a sore or injury will occur and you will not even know it.
A secondary problem causing diabetes foot pain is decreased blood flow to the legs and feet, specifically called peripheral vascular disease. The decreased blood flow can make it more difficult for injuries to heal.
Compounding the problem is if you are managing your diabetes poorly. The increased glucose in your blood actually serves as increased food supply for various infections and germs. How does this work in practice?
First, you stub your toe while wearing sandals in the yard. You get a smallish cut, but because you have nerve damage in your foot, you don’t even notice. The cut becomes infected and the germs in the wound feast upon the high glucose in your blood.
Soon, the infection spreads causing more damage. If left unchecked, the wound can eventually kill surrounding cells and even lead to an amputation.
The good news is that this horrible outcome may be preventable. How?
Here are the Top 8 Tips for Managing and Avoiding Foot Pain:
- Check your feet every day. Look for sores, cuts, blisters etc.
- Clean and dry your feet every day. No soaking, just clean them. Apply any lotion to dry skin if needed, avoiding lotion between toes.
- Regular Maintenance. Corns, bunions, ingrown toenails. Yuck! But, learn what they look like and care for them promptly and safely.
- Wear Good Shoes (and slippers!). Get good, comfortable shoes that fit and protect your feet.
- Visit Your Doctor. Have your doctor check your feet for problem areas. Your doctor can also check how well the blood is flowing to your feet and how well the nerves are feeling (pressure, pain, hot, cold).
- Drink Water. Water keeps your skin moist.
- Get special Shoes (if needed). Ask your doctor about special shoes which offer more comfort, particularly if your feet have changed shape.
- Don’t treat your feet like Rodney Dangerfield. Give them some respect! Diabetes and foot pain is no joke.
There you have it, the Top 8 Tips for Managing and Avoiding Diabetes Foot Pain Complications!