People with diabetes are far more likely to develop complications such as foot ulcers. Research shows that people with diabetes who take care of their feet and protect them from injury, are less likely to develop ulcers.
- Look carefully at your feet every day including between the toes. If you are unable to do this, ask someone to help
- If you see anything new such as a cut, bruise, blister, redness or bleeding, treat immediately or seek medical help
- Do not try to deal with corns, calluses, verrucae or other foot problems by yourself. In particular, do not use treatments which use acid such as corn plasters
- Moisturise your feet to prevent cracking but do not apply between the toes
- Look out for Athlete’s Foot. This is a fungal infection which causes flaky skin and cracks between the toes which can become sore and infected. Treat with an antifungal cream
- If you cannot see properly, get someone else to cut your nails. File the nails to avoid sharp edges
- Do not walk barefoot, even at home. You might tread on something or bang a toe
- Wear socks with shoes but make sure they are not too tight and cut-off circulation
- Wash your feet regularly and dry thoroughly between the toes
- Footwear should fit well, have broad fronts to give room for the toes, have low heels to avoid pressure on the toes and have good fastenings to prevent slippage and rubbing
- Avoid Slip-Ons and Flip-Flops
- Check there are no foreign objects in your shoes before putting them on
- Always test the bath temperature with your hand to avoid burns to the feet
- Avoid electric blankets, foot spas and hot water bottles for the same reason
Finally, if you do notice a break in the skin or an ulcer, see your G.P immediately.