Diabetes can affect different parts of the body including the feet for several reasons including reducing skin moisture (dryness), reducing sensation (due to damage to the nerves), reducing wound healing and increasing risk of infection (due to damage to the immune system).
There are general skin care recommendations for people who have diabetes from American Diabetes Association:
1- Always keep skin clean and dry.
2- Avoid very hot baths and showers. If the skin is dry, do not use bubble baths. If possible, use moisturizing soaps to relieve dry skin. Afterward, Use a standard skin lotion, but do not apply lotion between the toes, because the extra moisture between the toes may encourage fungus to grow.
3- Prevent dry skin. Scratching dry or itchy skin can damage the skin and allow infection to set in. Moisturize your skin to prevent chapping, especially in cold or windy weather. (our clinic can provide you with a balm that is made specifically for patients with diabetes. It is called Type2Science )
4- Treat cuts and scrapes immediately and wash minor cuts with soap and water. Only use an antibiotic cream or an ointment if your physician approves. Cover minor cuts with sterile gauze.
5- During winter and dry months, keep the home more humid, if possible, to prevent drying of the skin. See a specialist for skin problems that cannot be managed.
6- Check feet daily for sores and cuts.
7- Establish a daily skin care and foot care routine.
Our chiropody clinic will be gladly helping patients with diabetes for their feet concerns including regular nail trimming.