FAQ - Diabetic Foot Care
I’m diabetic, am I at risk for skin problems?
Certain diabetic skin problems occur only in people who have the disease. Acanthosis nigricans (raised brown or tan spots), diabetic dermopathy (light brown patches that are due to blood vessel changes), digital sclerosis (thick waxy skin), allergic reactions to insulin or other medication, and diabetic blisters related to neuropathy are some examples.
Other skin problems can occur in anyone, but seem more prevalent in the diabetic population. They include conditions like itching from dry skin, poor circulation, or a yeast infection; fungal infections such as athlete’s foot or fungal toenails; or bacterial infections such as boils, carbuncles, or folliculitis (infected hair follicles).
The main ways to combat skin problems associated with diabetes is first to keep your blood sugar levels under strict control. Also, keep your feet very clean and dry, use moisturizer on dry areas, and protect them with proper footwear. For more tips or to schedule an appointment to address your particular problem, call Flushing (718) 969-2266, Plainview (516) 822-9595, or Rego Park, NY, (718) 896-4433.
How are diabetic socks different?
Diabetic socks are designed with the complications from nerve damage and poor circulation in mind, because minor foot problems can quickly become serious if you have diabetes. These special socks have no seams to irritate your tender feet and cause sores or blisters. There are no elastic cuffs that would press in against your tissue and impede circulation. They may have extra cushioning to protect your skin or keep your feet warmer in the winter. They may also have moisture control characteristics to keep your feet dry and head off fungal infections in the summer. Some diabetic socks have special fibers that reflect your body heat back to your feet and also reduce friction. Others even have anti-bacterial properties to keep your feet free from infections.
For help in choosing the right socks, give Aadvanced Foot Care Associates a call at our three New York locations—Rego Park: (718) 896-4433, Plainview: (516) 822-9595, or Flushing: (718) 969-2266.
How can I prevent amputation if I’m diabetic?
Infected ulcers that develop gangrene are the main reason a toe or foot might need to be removed. The best way to prevent amputation is to monitor your sugar levels closely and keep them within range. If your glucose level goes haywire, it causes two main complications that contribute to foot sores—nerve damage and poor circulation. Keeping your levels stable heads off these problems at the start.
The second thing you can do is to practice exceptional hygiene and foot care. Clean your feet daily and check for sores. Trim toenails carefully and have corns or calluses removed by a medical professional. Don’t walk around barefoot and make sure your shoes and socks are comfortable and don’t cause friction on your feet. Visit your podiatrist regularly to monitor your foot health.
At Aadvanced Foot Care Associates, our expert podiatrists take your diabetic foot care seriously. Call us in Rego Park at (718) 896-4433, in Flushing at (718) 969-2266, and in Plainview at (516) 822-9595 and make us part of your care team.
Should I wear special shoes as a diabetic?
A diabetic person should never walk around barefoot. However, deciding on a shoe is a trickier dilemma. Whether or not you need special diabetic shoes is a question for you and your podiatrist to answer. While a good pair of regular shoes with adequate support may be reasonable, shoes specially designed for diabetic feet can help head off injury. They provide the support you need and eliminate any points of pressure or friction that could lead to an ulcer. Diabetic shoes are the best option for keeping your feet healthy in the long term. There are many good-looking styles that offer comfort, roominess, correct heel height, and smooth surfaces that won’t irritate. While you’re at it, invest in good diabetic socks as well. They cushion and handle moisture issues that could aggravate foot problems.
If you have questions about the best footwear for diabetic feet, contact Advanced Foot Care Associates in Flushing, NY at (718) 969-2266, Rego Park at (718) 896-4433, and Plainview at (516) 822-9595. Our expert podiatrists have solutions for all your foot conditions.
Why are my feet tingling?
There are many reasons for tingling in feet. It commonly happens when you cross your legs too long and put pressure on the nerves. This “pins and needles” effect is usually temporary and not too worrisome. Other causes are more serious, including exposure to toxins, infections, an injury, or one of the most common – diabetes. If the condition is just putting pressure on the nerve, from swelling, for example, simple treatments can often relieve the pressure and end the tingling.
Diabetes or exposure to toxins, on the other hand, can actually damage the nerves. A condition called peripheral neuropathy can worsen over time, causing pain, itching, and numbness that require more extensive treatment.
It is never good to ignore tingling in your feet. Contact Aadvanced Foot Care Associates in New York for an evaluation of your problem. Reach their Rego Park office at (718) 896-4433, the Plainview office at (516) 822-9595, and the office in Flushing at (718) 969-2266. Diabetic foot care is one of our specialties, and we want to put our foot care know-how to work for you.
Can I prevent ulcers?
Many things can cause foot ulcers, including shoes that irritate your skin, deformities like hammertoes, or complications from diabetes. You can take action to prevent ulcers from forming on your feet. If irritation is the problem, reduce it by wearing proper shoes and socks that leave enough room for your feet. Use moleskin or corn cushions to protect the vulnerable area when foot deformities cause friction in your shoes. However, never use pads or moleskin with chemical acid, especially if you are diabetic. Basic foot care like washing, drying, and inspecting your feet every day can head off problems. Trim toenails correctly and never cut calluses – soak and buff them with a pumice stone.
People with diabetes need to take special care because the neuropathy and poor circulation that accompany this condition can quickly turn a small irritation into a big problem. The most important way to prevent sores on your feet is to have regular checkups with your podiatrist. Aadvanced Foot Care Associates has offices in Rego Park, Plainview and Flushing, NY. Call us at (718) 896-4433, (516) 822-9595, or (718) 969-2266 for more information on preventative measures you can take.
What should diabetics do to care for their feet?
Because so many complications of diabetes occur in the feet and legs, diabetic foot care is crucial to keeping your foundation healthy. Daily care includes washing with soap and water, drying completely (including between toes), and moisturizing to keep skin soft and supple. As you do, inspect your feet closely for any sign of bruising, sores, cracked skin, or corns and calluses. Trim your toenails straight across and not too short to head off ingrown toenails. Wear shoes and socks at all times, and protect your feet from hot surfaces like pavement or beach sand. Other tips are to keep active as much as you can. If you have to sit for long periods, don’t cross your legs. Instead, lift them occasionally to rotate your ankles and wiggle your toes for 5 minutes. Keep your blood sugar level under control with exercise and a healthy diet, and don’t smoke. If you have diabetes and notice any problems with your feet, or if it is time for your regular podiatric visit, contact Aadvanced Foot Care Associates right away at (718) 896-4433 or (516) 822-9595 to prevent serious complications.
Why do my feet feel like they’re burning?
Walking on hot sand is significantly painful, that’s why we run across it or bury our feet under it for short periods of relief. For some, that burning sensation doesn’t end when they dip their feet in cool water or take cover in the shade. If your feet feel like they’re burning on a day-to-day basis, you may have neuropathy or nerve damage. Damaged nerves often misfire or become overactive, without injury, sending inappropriate pain signals to the brain. Other symptoms include tingling and numbness.
Nerve fibers can become damaged due to several medical conditions–diabetes and peripheral artery disease are the most common. Infection and inflammation can also cause a burning sensation.
Treating burning feet is a matter of reducing discomfort and preventing further nerve damage. Let the professionals at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates, of New York, treat your burning feet. We have several locations: Rego Park, Plainview and Flushing. Give us a call today or schedule an appointment online. We will find the treatment option that works best for you!
When should I worry about diabetes?
Simply having diabetes shouldn’t be a source of constant worry—with effort and investment in your health, you can live a full, active life. Diabetic issues like uncontrolled blood sugars and symptoms in your feet, however, are a cause for concern. They’re connected to serious health issues in your lower limbs, from peripheral neuropathy to diabetic ulcers. Preventing infections and keeping your feet healthy so you can stay active and maintain mobility is important. If you notice an ulcer developing, or some other problem in your feet, then you should be concerned enough to get immediate help.
Fortunately, basic diabetic foot care can go a long way in making sure your feet stay healthy and strong with this disease. Daily foot inspections can prevent sores from developing out of small cuts or blisters. Diabetic management can slow peripheral neuropathy and manage nerve pain. Good shoes and careful exercise will also be important parts of living with diabetes. Our team at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates is here to help with every step. Make an appointment to get started today instead of worrying. Call (718) 896-4433 for the Rego Park office, (516) 822-9595 for the Plainview office, or (718) 969-2266 for our Flushing location.