How Diabetes Affects Feet

Did you know that as a diabetic, you have a much greater risk of developing troublesome foot complications? At least half of all diabetic have debilitating foot pain and another 10% get problematic foot ulcers.   

Fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent diabetic foot issues and stop complications before they start. Board-certified podiatrist Jennifer Tauber, DPM, and the experienced care team at New Canaan Podiatry are committed to providing patients in New Canaan, Connecticut, with the best in diabetic foot care, including, preventive measures!

Read on to learn how diabetes impacts your feet and what you can do to keep your extremities healthy! 

How does diabetes cause foot problems?

Since people with diabetes have more glucose circulating through their bodies, they have a higher risk of developing foot problems. That’s because the underlying cause of diabetic foot problems is uncontrolled blood sugar. 

Sustained high blood sugar levels cause damage to your nerves and circulatory system, especially the nerve ending in your feet. This leads to conditions such as diabetic neuropathy and peripheral vascular disease. When you have these conditions, you’re at risk for even more foot problems.

Diabetic neuropathy

Diabetic neuropathy is nerve damage that causes a loss of feeling and sensation in your feet. Since you won’t be able to feel when your foot is cut, irritated, or develops blisters, you have a higher risk of these wounds becoming infected. As a result, gangrene can develop, putting you at risk for amputation. 

Peripheral vascular disease

Uncontrolled diabetes can damage your circulatory system and blood vessels, leading to a condition called peripheral vascular disease. With peripheral vascular disease, the blocked blood vessels in your legs stop your feet from getting enough blood. As a result, any wounds or injuries your feet experience heal very slowly and are more likely to become infected.     

What can I do to avoid diabetic foot problems?

It’s true that diabetes puts you at a higher risk of developing foot problems. But the good news is you can take steps to reduce your risk and keep your feet healthy. 

One of the most important steps in keeping your feet healthy is controlling your blood sugar. Studies indicate diabetics with well-managed blood sugar levels are able to prevent nerve damage. In addition, if you already have neuropathy, controlling blood sugar levels can reduce foot pain and further foot damage. 

Other ways to avoid developing issues with your feet when you have diabetes include:

Dr. Taub and the team at New Canaan Podiatry are dedicated to changing lives through excellent diabetic foot care. By coming into the office at least once each year for a preventive diabetic foot exam, Dr. Taub can address any problems early, before complications start. 

If you experience any of the following symptoms before your next routine visit, call to schedule an exam:

If you have diabetes and want to learn more about foot care for diabetes, Dr. Taub and the team at New Canaan Podiatry are here to help. Contact our New Canaan, Connecticut, office by calling 203-263-9052 to book an appointment now!

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