How to Prevent Foot Ulcers in Diabetics?

Normally, foot ulcers are lesions that include loss of epithelium and can extend into the dermis and deeper layers, sometimes to the bones and muscles. Foot ulcers in diabetics are mainly due to neurologic and vascular complications.

foot ulcers in diabeticsDiabetics with abnormally high blood sugar levels are at a greater risk of foot ulcers.

Foot ulcers are mainly due to two complications developed in diabetics. They include:

Decreased sensation of the skin on the feet: Diabetics suffer from abnormal nerve functioning because of high blood sugar levels.

Nerves that transfer messages of pain and sensation are usually affected.

Patients may walk on any sharp objects, and develop blisters, bruises, etc. Loss of sensation prevents them from protecting these wounds which finally grow into ulcers.

Narrowed blood vessels going to the feet: Diabetics are at higher risk of developing furring of the blood vessels. This is due to deposition of atheroma fat inside the lining of arteries thus reducing the blood flow.

Legs are the most commonly affected areas. Poor circulation doesn’t allow the wound to heal and finally they turn into an ulcer.

Often foot ulcers respond well to any treatment. But foot ulcers in diabetics take longer to heal. Sometimes a more serious complication like gangrene may happen. In severe cases, foot amputation is needed.

Preventing foot ulcers in diabetics

Regularly examine your feet: Examine your feet for problems regularly like poor circulation or reduced sensation. Recognizing any complications needs regular feet examinations.

Treating diabetes and various health problems: The better you control diabetes, the less likely you are to be affected with problems like foot ulcers.

Reducing high blood pressure, high levels of cholesterol, and various risk factors can keep you at reduced threat of diabetic complications. If you are a smoker, it is strongly recommended to quit smoking.

Proper foot care: Protecting the feet from damage and taking proper foot care can keep you at reduced risk of foot ulcers.

  • Carefully look at your feet everyday for reduced sensation.
  • Consult your doctor if you observe any bruise, blister, cut, bleeding or redness on the feet.
  • Don’t try to deal the foot problems by yourself. Don’t use any chemicals or acid bandages to remove corns.
  • Apply moisturizing cream or oil if the skin is dry.
  • Regularly wash your feet and dry them thoroughly.
  • Avoid walking with bare foot, even in your house.
  • Cover the ulcer with protective dressing.
  • Take antibiotics if the ulcer becomes infected.
  • Sometimes a small surgery is needed to remove the pus and dead tissues.
  • If there are narrowed arteries in your leg, then an operation is advised to widen the arteries.
  • Wear special shoes to keep the pressure off the ulcer.

Protecting the foot ulcers in diabetics after development:

  • Cover the ulcer with protective dressing.
  • Take antibiotics if the ulcer becomes infected.
  • Sometimes a small surgery is needed to remove the pus and dead tissues.
  • If there are narrowed arteries in your leg, then an operation is advised to widen the arteries.
  • Wear special shoes to keep the pressure off the ulcer.

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