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What You and Your Podiatrist Can Do to Prevent Diabetic Foot Ulcers

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Foot ulcers on people with diabetes are the most common cause for foot amputation. Although common, foot ulcers should never be left untreated, as the consequences could become severe. To avoid getting a foot ulcer, and thus make sure you won't have to become a subject of amputation, there are precautions you can take.

Examine your feet

The easiest, and most important, thing you can do to avoid foot ulcers is to carefully examine your own feet every day. This is particularly important if you have lost some of the sensations in your feet due to diabetes.  Look for anything that might resemble a cut or a blister. If you find anything unusual and don't know what to do, go see your podiatrist. You should also wash your feet regularly; make sure to let them dry completely to prevent fungus, and treat them with a moisturising cream to prevent them from cracking.

Comfortable shoes

Another important thing you can do, which again is extra necessary if you have reduced sensation in your feet, is to buy comfortable shoes that won't cause any chafes or blisters. Using comfortable, stable shoes that let your feet breathe can help you prevent many issues with your feet. Use your shoes with socks that aren't too tight around the ankle, as this can hinder the already low blood flow to your feet.

See a podiatrist

Make sure you go and see your podiatrist regularly, even if you don't have any problems with your feet yet. They will be able to tell if your feet are in danger of developing an ulcer, and can help you with solutions that are particular for your feet and your needs. If you were to develop an ulcer, they would be able to tell in time and give you the proper treatment.

Treating an ulcer

If you do develop an ulcer, there's no reason to panic. With immediate action and proper care, the ulcer doesn't need to cause amputation. Just make sure that you see a podiatrist as soon as possible when you suspect you're developing an ulcer. Sometimes they will just clean the wound and dress it to protect it. You will probably get more appointments with the podiatrist so that they can re-dress it regularly. Sometimes small operations are required to help the ulcer heal. The procedures can vary from having to remove the hard skin to let the ulcer heal, to widening the arteries in your leg to increase the blood flow to your feet.