Foot care is very important in diabetes, which is one of the most common causes of hospitalization in our country! Unfortunately, one of the places where diabetes hits the most is the feet. It is very important to pay attention to foot care in these periods when foot wounds are very challenging for patients. Associate Professor from Memorial Ankara Hospital, Department of Endocrinology. Dr. Ethem Turgay Cerit gave information about foot injuries and prevention methods in diabetes patients.
Diabetes, which is seen in 13.7% of our country’s population, that directly concerns over 10 million people, hits the feet the most. Diabetic foot ulcers are seen in approximately one third of diabetic patients. However, foot ulcers are among the most important problems of these people and the most common reason for hospitalization. It is known that such injuries seen in diabetics in hot weather increase compared to other times.
If You Urinate Frequently…
Diabetes is a metabolic disease that occurs as a result of the absence, deficiency or ineffectiveness of the hormone insulin and is characterized by lifelong high blood sugar. Due to the insufficient effect of insulin, sugar in the blood cannot enter the cell and the level of sugar in the blood rises. An elevated level of sugar in the blood is called hyperglycemia. Frequent urination, dry mouth, drinking a lot of water, weakness, fatigue and weight loss are among the symptoms of diabetes, and this disease can cause many problems if not treated well.
Foot wounds are the most important and most common reason for hospitalization of diabetics.
Hyperglycemia causes chronic complications related to diabetes. Microvascular complications include eye, kidney and nerve damage, and macrovascular complications include heart attack, stroke and foot ulcers. Foot ulcers are among the most important problems of people with diabetes and the most common reason for hospitalization.
It can damage the nerves in the feet and legs!
Diabetes has two negative effects on the feet. The first is nerve damage, the second is vascular damage. Diabetes damages the nerves in the feet and legs, causing pain and the inability to perceive heat and cold. This loss of sensation caused by nerve damage is called “diabetic neuropathy”. While patients with diabetic neuropathy cannot feel the trauma, wounds, cuts and burns on their feet, this situation also opens the door to infection in the later stages.
Foot Wounds Can Turn into Gangrene!
The second important problem caused by diabetes is the decrease in blood flow in the foot or leg, that is, vascular damage. This condition, called peripheral vascular disease, makes it difficult for wounds to heal. If the wounds and infections in the feet of diabetics are not treated, they can cause gangrene and even cut a part of the finger or foot.
Do Not Try Treatment Methods On Your Own!
Among the most common foot problems in diabetic patients, there are dryness and cracks in the skin of the feet, fungus, blistering, hallux valgus deformity (deformity of the junction of the thumb and the first metacarpal bone) and bunion, callus, claw foot and nail ingrown. Patients should not underestimate these problems and should not resort to treatment methods on their own. A specialist should be consulted for these problems.
Foot Care is Very Important in Diabetes!
Not recognizing foot ailments in a timely manner can lead to the progression of the infection on the one hand, and worsen blood sugar on the other. The points that diabetics should pay attention to in order to prevent this situation and to protect their foot health are as follows:
1- Feet should be checked every day. If there is a change in skin color, the sole, between the toes and the upper part should be checked, if the lower parts cannot be seen easily, a mirror should be used or help from family members should be sought.
2- The presence of wounds, cracks, blisters and calluses on the foot should be checked. If you have calluses on your feet, you should not intervene with a cutting tool, and a doctor should be consulted immediately.
3- In order to avoid serious burns, hot water bags or other heat sources should not be applied to the feet.
4-Smoking is one of the most important factors that disrupt the foot veins. Smoking should be avoided.
5-Compliant, non-squeezing, soft, leather and cloth shoes should be worn. Avoid high-heeled shoes that force the feet, pointed at the front; new shoes should be worn and changed for a short time in the first days.
6-Slippers should be used while walking on the sea and on the beach, just like at home. 7- 8- It should never be walked around in vineyards or gardens with bare feet.
9- Flip-flops or sandal-style shoes should be avoided.