The effects of diabetes extend to your entire body, impacting your eyes, vital organs, feet, and more. Because diabetes can cause very serious foot complications, a podiatrist is a critical member of your care team. Podiatrists work to prevent complications, detect problems as early as possible, and intervene if complications do arise. For expert diabetic foot care, schedule your appointment with the experts at Westchester Foot Care today, serving patients in their three Westchester County offices located in Yonkers, New Rochelle, and White Plains.
How does diabetes affect my feet?
If you manage your blood sugar efficiently, you’re at lower risk of foot complications from diabetes, but there will always be some level of risk. Brittle diabetics and those with uncontrolled sugar are at highest risk of foot problems, including:
- Sores, ulcers, and wounds that don’t heal on their own
- Loss of feeling in your feet, which can cause trips, falls, and sores that go unnoticed
- Neuralgia, a condition that affects the nerves in your feet and causes chronic pain, tingling, and numbness
When sores go unnoticed or intervention is too late, people with diabetes commonly experience serious consequences, including amputation of toes, feet, or even the lower leg.
What signs and symptoms should I watch for?
It’s essential to involve a podiatrist in your care before you ever experience signs and symptoms of foot problems because the podiatrist is as engaged in prevention as treatment. However, you should contact a podiatrist immediately if:
- You notice a loss of sensation in your feet
- You experience frequent trips and falls
- You have a sore on your foot that isn’t healing
- You need help with foot care
- You have foot pain
The doctors at Westchester Foot Care have extensive experience in diabetic foot care.
What is a podiatrist’s role in my diabetic care plan?
The podiatrist plays a critical role. They inspect your feet to identify issues early, while treatment is still effective. They can also assist with routine foot and nail care to prevent complications and provide both surgical and nonsurgical treatment when problems do arise.
Is there anything I can do to prevent diabetic foot problems?
Although you may not be able to prevent problems completely, you can significantly reduce your risk by taking these preventive measures:
- Involve a podiatrist in your care early (as soon as you know you have diabetes)
- Wear socks and shoes at all times to protect your feet from injury; special shoes designed for diabetics are recommended
- Keep your blood sugar under control by following your doctor’s recommendations for diet and medication
- Examine your own feet daily if you can, and ask your primary care doctor to check your feet at every appointment
- Schedule routine foot care to maintain healthy feet and toenails