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  • Diabetes Treatment: Don't Forget Your Feet

  • Foot care is especially important for people who have diabetes. Here are some suggestions:

    • Inspect feet daily. Pay particular attention to soles of feet and toes. Note any change in temperature, blisters, cuts, scratches or sores. Report any of these to your doctor.
    • Wash your feet daily with warm water, not hot, and a mild soap. Do not soak. Dry feet carefully, especially between toes.
    • If the skin is dry you can apply a cream. If you are trying a cream for the first time, apply it to your wrist for one day to see how you will react to it. Take care to avoid excess accumulation of cream between toes.
    • If toes overlap, you can place lamb wool, cut into short strips, between toes. You should change it daily.
    • Inspect the insides of your shoes for foreign objects, torn lining, protruding nails, etc. All of these can cause foot irritation.
    • Wear shoes that fit well, not tightly. Break in new shoes gradually.
    • See your podiatrist for the treatment of corns, calluses and other foot ailments. Do not trim your own corns or calluses or use commercial corn remedies.
    • If your feet are cold, wear warm socks. Do not use hot water bottles, heating pads or hot water soaks.
    • It's good to avoid things that decrease blood flow to your feet. These include smoking, wearing constricting garters, and wearing tight hose or socks.
    • Most over-the-counter foot care products caution that people with diabetes shouldn't use them. This is especially true for strong antiseptics and chemicals. Ask your doctor before using any of these products.
    • Discuss the technique for cutting and trimming your toenails with your doctor or podiatrist.
    • Remove your shoes and socks each time you see your doctor so your feet can be checked for changes in circulation and sensation.