Foot wounds are quite common in diabetic patients. This is due, in part, to the neuropathy that diabetes causes. You can't always feel a small nick or scrape on your foot because of this nerve damage, and as a result, actual wounds tend to form due to the friction experienced when you walk and move. Although diabetic foot wounds are not typically painful, they do require very precise care to prevent infection. Follow these dos and don'ts if you ever find yourself with a foot wound as a diabetic.
Don't: Go barefoot.
When you already have a wound, make sure you always wear shoes, even in the house. There are a few reasons for this. First, the floors — even those in your home — are not as clean as you would hope. It's easy to introduce bacteria to the wound and end up with an infection. Second, the friction between an open wound and the floor will just make the wound worse. When you wear a shoe, you can first apply bandaging to reduce friction and therefore help speed healing. The shoe will hold the bandage in place.
Do: Check the wound twice a day.
Remember, you can't rely on your sense of pain to tell you whether the wound is healing or getting worse. You need to physically look at it. If you cannot see the wound easily, try using a mirror to help. Or, you can have a friend look at the wound for you. If the wound keeps getting larger, or if you notice any signs of infection, such as pus or redness, you need to contact a podiatrist sooner rather than later.
Don't: Put socks on while your feet are wet.
You should definitely be washing your feet at least once a day. But equally as important as washing is drying. Let your feet air dry completely before you put a sock on. If you put a sock on a moist foot, that moisture can perpetuate the growth of bacteria and fungi in the wound — basically leading to infection.
Do: Wear socks that control moisture.
Moisture from your own sweat can make diabetic foot wounds worse, too. In order to keep this moisture at bay, wear socks made from wool another highly breathable material. Change your socks daily, too. Even if they look clean, they could be trapping bacteria that would lead to an infection.
Diabetic foot wounds can and do heal without infection, but only if you're careful to follow the tips above. Contact a podiatrist if you have any questions.
Contact a company like Collier Podiatry PA if you need any professional foot wound services.
Walking is simple, right? You just put one foot in front of the other. This can be harder than it sounds if your feet are sore or plagued by ailments like bunions, hammertoe, or plantar fasciitis. If you've ever struggled to simply put one foot in front of the other, you're familiar with this unique pain and frustration. Thankfully, podiatrists have solutions for most common foot ailments. In the articles we've collected here, you can learn all about those solutions, and also about podiatrists in general. We hope that by being more informed, you can take a more preventative approach to foot care also also know what to expect when you seek treatment.