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853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
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By contactus
November 16, 2011
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DIABETES AWARENESS MONTH CONTINUES WITH

FREE DIABETIC FOOT SCREENINGS

THROUGHOUT THE MONTH OF NOVEMBER

 

Over the past couple of weeks, we have learned a few facts about Diabetes Mellitus and how it can affect our lives on a daily basis. Since you cannot come to the podiatrist office every day or even every week, today we will discuss a few things you can be doing at home to ensure the health of your feet in between doctor’s office visits.

·         Examine your feet daily, and if you are not able to see every part of your feet, find a foot-check buddy such as your spouse, your kids, or a friend. Check for dry, cracked skin or any open sores, blisters, cuts, or scratches anywhere on your feet or legs. Check for any areas of redness, warmth, or tenderness. Check your feet for corns and calluses, or areas of thickened skin. If you find any of the above, clean the area with warm soap and water, put a bandage over the area, wear clean shoes and socks, and see your doctor as soon as possible.

·         Check your toenails for abnormal appearances in color, length, and thickness. It is usually better to have your podiatrist cut your toenails, but if you cut your own nails, cut them straight across and avoid cutting the corners. See your podiatrist immediately if any bleeding or other injury occurs. If you get pedicures done professionally, notify them before your session that you are diabetic and make sure they use clean water and clean tools.

·         In order to best protect your feet, make sure you wear comfortable shoes and thick, cushioning socks (cotton, wool or cotton-wool blend) that are not too tight.  Avoid shoes that expose your toes or heel. It is important to avoid walking barefoot, as you may step on a foreign object (splinter, piece of glass, etc) without feeling it, and an infection could develop. Look inside your shoes before putting them on to make sure there are no foreign objects or bunched-up cloth from the shoe liner. Make sure to wear appropriate shoes for the weather/environment you will be in, to keep your feet warm and dry. If you have neuropathy and are unable to feel if your shoes are too tight, you can use a simple at-home test by standing (your foot changes shape when you are standing versus sitting) on a piece of paper, trace the outline of your foot, then trace the outline of your shoe over the outline of your foot. This will give you an idea of how much room your foot has in your shoe. There should be at least ½ inch of space between the end of your longest toe and the shoe and the shoe should be at least as wide as your foot.

Call your podiatrist immediately if you notice any changes in the appearance or feeling of your feet. The key to healthy diabetic feet is early detection and prevention, so there is no problem too small to ask your doctor.

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