High blood sugar levels over time can cause nerve damage and circulation problems. These problems can cause or contribute to foot problems. Left unnoticed or untreated, sores, ingrown toenails, and other problems can lead to infection. Poor circulation makes healing an infection difficult.

Untreatable infections may require amputations. While your ulcers heal, stay off your feet and follow your treatment plan. Diabetic foot ulcers can take several weeks to heal. Ulcers may take longer to heal if your blood sugar is high and if constant pressure is applied to the ulcer.

Footcare is of utmost importance in Diabetes Management. A small cut can lead to serious
complications. Diabetes may cause nerve damage that takes away the feeling in your feet. It may
also reduce blood flow to the feet, making it an injury harder to heal. Due to these factors many a
time a Diabetic person may not even feel the presence of a foreign body in their shoe/feet. As a
result, you could develop a blister or a sore. This could lead to an infection or a nonhealing

Here are a few guidelines one could follow for proper footcare in diabetic condition:

  • Inspect your feet daily.
  • Bathe feet in lukewarm, never hot, water.
  • Be gentle when bathing your feet.
  • Moisturize your feet but not between your toes.
  • Cut nails carefully.
  • Never treat corns or calluses yourself.
  • Wear clean, dry socks. Change them daily.
  • Consider socks made specifically for patients living with diabetes.
  • Wear socks to bed.
  • Shake out your shoes and feel the inside before wearing.
  • Keep your feet warm and dry.
  • Consider using an antiperspirant on the soles of your feet.
  • Never walk barefoot.
  • Take care of your diabetes.
  • Do not smoke.
  • Get periodic foot exams.

Caring for Your Feet

  • Take care of your diabetes
  • Check your feet every day
  • Be more active
  • Wash your feet every day
  • Keep your skin soft and smooth
  • If you can see and reach your toenails, trim them when needed
  • Wear shoes and socks at all times.

Educate Patients on Proper Foot Care ? The "DO's" & "DON'Ts"


  • Check your feet every day for cuts, cracks, bruises, blisters, sores, infections, unusual markings.
  • Use a mirror to see the bottom of your feet if you can not lift them up.
  • Check the colour of your legs & feet ? seek help if there is swelling, warmth or redness.
  • Wash and dry your feet every day, especially between the toes.
  • Apply a good skin lotion every day on your heels and soles. Wipe off excess.
  • Change your socks every day.
  • Trim your nails straight across.
  • Clean a cut or scratch with mild soap and water and cover with dry dressing.
  • Wear good supportive shoes or professionally fitted shoes with low heels (under 5cm).
  • Buy shoes in the late afternoon since your feet swell by then.
  • Avoid extreme cold and heat (including the sun).
  • See a foot care specialist if you need advice or treatment.


  • Cut your own corns or callouses.
  • Treat your own in-growing toenails or slivers with a razor or scissors. See your doctor or foot care specialist.
  • Use over-the-counter medications to treat corns and warts.
  • Apply heat with a hot water bottle or electric blanket ? may cause burns unknowingly.
  • Soak your feet.
  • Take very hot baths.
  • Use lotion between your toes.
  • Walk barefoot inside or outside.
  • Wear tight socks, garter or elastics or knee highs.
  • Wear over-the-counter insoles ? may cause blisters if not right for your feet.
  • Sit for long periods of time.
  • Smoke.


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