Diabetes is a serious disease characterized by the body's inability to make or effectively use insulin, a hormone responsible for regulating the glucose in your body and converting it into energy. Without this essential hormone, excess glucose builds in the blood, resulting in hyperglycemia, also known as high blood sugar.
Over time, if glucose levels aren't tightly controlled with insulin injections or other treatments, the vessels that supply blood to vital organs can sustain damage, increasing your risk for complications like diabetic neuropathy. Diligent diabetes management, proper foot care protocols, and regularly seeing a podiatrist can help mitigate these risks. Fortunately, you've come to the right place. Keep reading to find out what the diabetic foot care experts at A Step Above Foot Care can do for you.
Long Beach Diabetic Foot Care Specialists
Our Board Certified Podiatric Surgeon Dr. Miller-Khawam and her associate Dr. Lisonbee have extensive experience caring for diabetic feet. Regardless of whether you were recently diagnosed or have been living with diabetes for years, you can benefit from a thorough evaluation from our caring, trusted professionals. We'll assess your feet for nerve damage and other health risks, then work with you to craft a treatment and prevention plan that meets your needs. Here are a few examples of common diabetic foot problems we treat at our practice:
- Diabetic neuropathy. For many diabetic patients, this nerve damage is the first step in a downward spiral of foot health. Neuropathy can cause a tingling or burning sensation—or even a loss of feeling—in the feet and toes. Diabetic patients who can no longer feel their feet may be less likely to notice cuts, blisters, calluses, and other issues that, if untreated, can develop into serious sores and infections.
- Foot ulcers. Distance from the heart, poor circulation in diabetic feet, and improper footwear can increase the risk for open sores and wounds that are slow to heal. Though not all foot ulcers are painful, all require evaluation.
- Amputation. When foot ulcers and open wounds fail to heal, you may require an amputation. However, by controlling your blood sugar, practicing good daily foot hygiene, undergoing regular routine care, and seeking prompt treatment for foot and toenail issues, we can help you avoid this undesirable outcome.
Keeping Diabetic Feet Happy and Healthy
Though diabetic feet require special consideration, maintaining good foot health doesn't have to be difficult when you follow these tips.
- Manage your diabetes, maintaining your blood glucose levels within the range recommended by your endocrinologist.
- Check your feet daily for cuts, sores, blisters, plantar warts, ingrown toenails, corns, calluses, and other problems.
- Wash your feet daily with lukewarm—not hot—water and gentle soap, then dry them thoroughly with a towel, paying special attention to the areas between your toes.
- Moisturize your feet several times a week if they're prone to excessive dryness, but avoid rubbing lotion between your toes, as it can prevent the skin from drying properly.
- Cut toenails straight across, making sure to avoid digging the clippers into the side on the sides of the nail. Or, better yet, make an appointment and let us trim them for you.
- See us regularly for routine podiatric care like toenail cleaning, cutting, and trimming; and corn or callus removal. Never try to treat a corn or callus yourself; make an appointment.
- Make an immediate appointment if you notice a cut, blister, or bruise that hasn't healed after a few days.
- Avoid walking barefoot, especially if you're suffering from diabetic neuropathy-related feeling loss.
- Consider wearing socks made specifically for diabetics, which offer extra cushioning and eliminate irritating seams.
- Don't smoke, as it can reduce blood flow to your feet.
Make an Appointment and Take the First Step Toward Better Diabetic Foot Health
Your feet are important to you. At A Step Above Foot Care, they're important to us, too. Not only do we provide the highest-quality diabetic podiatric care, but our friendly, welcoming office staff is committing to ensuring that every aspect of your visit is as pleasant as possible. Call us today at (562) 429-5300 to schedule an office visit. We offer convenient same-day or next-day appointments.