Winter Diabetic Foot Care Tips
Why is Diabetic Foot Care Important in Winter?
Diabetes affects many different aspects of your body, including your feet. As a result, people with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing complications related to their feet, such as ulcers and infections, which can cause nerve damage and even amputation if left untreated. Therefore, as a diabetic, you must take extra care of your feet during winter when cold temperatures can exacerbate existing issues or create new ones.
This blog post will cover some foolproof tips for helping keep your winter diabetic foot care in check, from proper footwear selection to ensuring circulation stays healthy. Read on for our tips on managing and maintaining healthy feet throughout the chilly months:
Keep your Feet Warm & Dry
Keeping feet warm and dry is especially important to prevent the onset or worsening of diabetic foot complications, such as ulcerations or infections. The risk of developing these types of wounds increases in cold weather due to reduced circulation, vasoconstriction, and a weakened immune system caused by exposure to extreme temperatures.
Keeping your feet covered and warm indoors or outdoors can reduce your chances of developing such injuries by helping maintain optimal blood flow and regulating body temperature.
Make sure you wear warm socks and keep your feet covered when you go outside in colder weather. Also, avoid wearing sandals or any other open-toed shoes, as these will quickly allow moisture into your shoes and put you at risk for blisters or other skin irritations.
Do Not Expose Your Feet to Direct Heat
When inside, resist the temptation to stick your feet directly in front of a heater or fireplace – this could lead to burns on sensitive skin without you even noticing. Instead, use layers of clothing and warm, closed-toe shoes to protect your feet.
You risk any cuts or scrapes on the feet becoming infected if not kept clean and dry when exposed to direct heat. This is because hot water or other direct heat sources may make it difficult for skin cells to regenerate properly, making them more susceptible to infection.
Additionally, exposure to direct heat can also put people with diabetes at risk of peripheral neuropathy, a condition in which nerve damage occurs due to an impaired blood supply. Peripheral neuropathy can cause tingling or numbness in the affected area(s), loss of balance, pain, and even muscle weakness if left untreated. Ultimately, you must avoid exposing your feet to direct heat so that you do not worsen existing foot problems or risk developing new ones.
Apply Moisturizing Lotion Daily
Applying a moisturizing lotion after showering is one way to help combat this issue. This provides a protective barrier against further dryness/chapping/irritation caused by environmental factors like wind chill, snowfall, etc.
It is essential to keep your feet moisturized twice a day and avoid moisturizing between your toes to minimize the risk of developing fungal infections like athlete’s foot.
Wear Moisture-Wicking Socks
You’ll benefit significantly during the cold season by wearing moisture-wicking socks. These socks are designed to keep feet dry and comfortable by wicking moisture away from the skin, helping to prevent infection. Moisture-wicking socks can also help improve circulation in the foot, which is essential for those with diabetes.
Furthermore, they are also designed to fit well and provide more cushioning than regular cotton, or woolen socks, which is especially helpful as irritation at high-pressure points on the feet can lead to tissue damage.
Make Sure You’re Wearing Properly Sized Shoes & Boots
Don’t try squeezing into too-tight shoes just because you need them for snowy/icy days outside – find boots and shoes that fit correctly so that there’s no risk of blisters or corns forming due to chafing against ill-fitting footwear (this also applies indoors where slippery floor surfaces can be just as problematic). Additionally, make sure you have plenty of room around your toes in order to avoid pinching them or otherwise constraining foot movement which can lead to further aggravating issues over time.
If you need advice on the proper footwear for your diabetic feet, you can discuss your footwear needs with us. At Waco Foot & Ankle, we understand the importance of protecting diabetic feet during winter months.
Our team of experts can provide customized diabetic footwear that can help keep your feet warm and dry throughout the colder months. In addition, our experienced staff can assess your individual needs and recommend a style of shoe best suited for comfort and protection during cold winter days.
Schedule Regular Visits With Your Podiatrist For Checkups
It’s always important for diabetics who suffer from any type of foot-related problem(s) to visit our office on a regular basis. Our doctors can assess your overall condition and perform a health checkup.
If you are new to the area or to us, the Waco Foot & Ankle team would love for you to come in for an appointment anytime throughout the winter so we can further assist in ensuring everything looks good before temperatures start rising again. Our team of certified podiatrists is dedicated to keeping your feet healthy and safe all year round.
Contact Us for Diabetic Foot Care!
We understand how challenging it can be to manage diabetic foot care during cold weather seasons – but with our tips above (plus regular visits to our podiatrists), there’s no reason why anyone should suffer from any preventable issue.
Contact us today if you need further assistance managing your diabetic foot care needs now. Our team can help you build a winter diabetic foot care plan and treat any foot problem immediately.
With regular visits and proper care from our experienced doctors, you can remain confident that your feet will stay well cared for throughout the winter season!