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Give your feet some TLC if you have diabetes

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  • Give your feet some TLC if you have diabetes

    Give your feet some TLC if you have diabetes

    For some people, blisters or minor cuts on the feet might be just an annoyance or bother. But if you have diabetes, preventing injuries to your lower limbs is critical.
    Nerve damage may make it hard for you to feel your feet, high blood glucose can feed infections, and decreased blood flow to your extremities can cause pain and lead to further complications. Blisters can easily lead you down the road to serious foot sores and even amputation.

    Give your feet some TLC with these self-care tips:

    1.Control your diabetes. This will prevent complications with your feet and throughout your body. Eat right, exercise, and follow your doctor’s instructions for managing your blood sugar.

    2.Get to know your feet and toes. Check them every evening for cuts, blisters, red spots and sore toenails. If you have trouble bending over to check your feet, ask a loved one for help or use a mirror.

    3.Choose the right footwear. Never go barefoot—and pick shoes that fit comfortably and protect your feet. Since you might not be able to feel shoes rubbing and blisters forming, avoid pointy shoes that crowd your toes. And never buy too-tight shoes hoping they’ll stretch. You might consider asking your health care team if special shoes might be right for you.

    4.Practice foot hygiene. The National Diabetes Education Program recommends you wash your feet every day in warm water. Use a soft towel to pat them dry, taking care to reach between toes. Smooth on a thin layer of lotion on the top and bottom of your feet—but not between toes. Trim your toenails often, cutting straight across.

    5.Enlist your doctor’s help. Make sure your doctor checks your feet at every appointment. Take your shoes and socks off right away as a reminder. And let your health care team know if you spot signs of trouble or if your feet hurt or feel numb.[/LIST]
    I received the GIFT OF LIFE on Nov 9, 2010 thanks to my wonderful donor Laura and her family!