Winter Foot Precautions for Patients with Diabetes

Wet and sloppy weather conditions along with colder temperatures can mean an increase in the risk of foot health problems for diabetic patients. At Long Island Foot & Ankle Group, PC we know that taking the appropriate precautions is essential for helping our patients with diabetes avoid serious medical problems. Poor circulation and nerve damage that decreases sensation in your feet are both conditions common in diabetics. Below are some reminders to help keep feet safe and healthy:

  • Wet socks can lead to athlete’s foot or fungal toenails. Moisture mixes with bacteria in your socks and shoes and an infection begins to grow. That’s why it’s important to change your socks if they get wet from snow or slush or due to sweating in overheated cars and buildings. Moisture wicking socks can also help keep skin dry. If your feet tend to sweat excessively try a foot powder in the morning before putting on your socks.
  • Dry skin can just be just as harmful as damp skin. Flaking, itchy skin can lead to rashes and even open cracks and sores that have the potential to become infected. Use a rich moisturizer after showering but avoid the area between the toes.
  • Don’t expose your feet to direct heat. Decreased sensation in your feet may make it difficult to recognize when electric blankets and fireplaces or pellet stoves are too hot and actually burning your skin.
  • Choose shoes with low heels and a tread that grips the pavement to help prevent slips, falls and ankle sprains.
  • Don’t ignore abnormalities in your feet. If you notice any unusual bruising, redness, cuts, blisters, swelling, growths or other changes in your feet contact our Valley Stream or Lake Success office as soon as possible. Our podiatrists, Dr. Russell Caprioli, Dr. Mary Ann Bilotti, Dr. John Haight or Dr. Marzana Mleczko will want to see and treat any potential foot problems before they develop into ulcers or other opportunities for infection or injury. Contact one of our offices for an appointment by calling: 516-825-4070 or 516-327-0074.