Foot Care: The Top 5 Tips

Taking care of your feet is important for everyone. But if you have diabetes, it’s doubly important, to avoid the serious complications that can happen to your feet. Follow these tips for happy feet!

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Diabetes and your feet

You may not always think of diabetes as a condition that can affect your feet. But you should. Without proper daily foot care and a thorough foot exam by your doctor, nurse or foot specialist every year, diabetes can take a serious toll on your tootsies. 
Diabetes can hurt your feet in two ways:
  • By damaging the nerves in your feet (a condition called peripheral neuropathy), diabetes can either give you extreme foot pain, or can make your feet go numb. That makes it harder for you to notice if your feet are blistered or cut – so there’s a risk that those wounds could become infected.
  • By reducing blood flow to your feet, diabetes can make it more difficult for any cuts, sores, or blisters to heal properly – again, increasing the risk of serious infections.
That’s why it’s so important to take care of your feet when you have diabetes.

Tip 1: Build a foot care kit

So you know that foot care is important with diabetes, but how exactly should you go about doing it? Well, every good journey starts with a good first step, and yours should be to put together a kit of supplies that you’ll need for your daily foot care routine.
What should you include in your foot care kit?
  • Nail clippers
  • A nail file or emery board
  • A small hand mirror to help you see all parts of your feet – try to find a mirror that’s unbreakable
  • Talcum powder or corn starch
  • A small bottle of lotion
  • A pumice stone, to gently file away calluses or corns
Keeping everything you need for foot care in one convenient kit will make it easier for you to care for your feet every day … even if you’re travelling.

Tip 2: Inspect your feet daily

Taking a good, close look at your feet every day is the best way to prevent potential foot problems. Set aside a common time to do this; for example, every evening when you take off your shoes. Checking your feet at the same time each day will help you make it a routine that you won’t forget.
What should you be looking for?
  • Dry or cracking skin
  • Cuts or sores
  • Corns or calluses
  • Swelling or redness
  • Ingrown or infected toenails
If you find any problem areas, it’s important to deal with them right away before they become more serious. Ask your doctor if you’re not sure what to do. And it’s not a bad idea to increase your foot inspections to twice a day until your problem areas have healed.

Tip 3: Wash your feet daily

Keeping your feet clean is a good way to help prevent infection. But it’s important to follow some key rules when washing your feet, so you won’t make any foot problems worse.
Wash your feet in warm water, NOT HOT WATER. Water that’s too hot can cause stress on your skin, and may cause a burn.  32-35°C (90-95°F) is a safe temperature. If you don’t have a thermometer to test it with, use your elbow (not your feet) to check: it shouldn’t feel “hot” to the touch.
Wash, DON’T SOAK. Soaking your feet can lead to a potential breakdown of the integrity of your skin. If you do bathe rather than shower, make sure not to keep your feet under water for too long.
Dry your feet thoroughly. Towel off gently but well, especially between the toes. If you have trouble keeping the areas between your toes dry, applying some talcum powder or corn starch after you wash can help.
Apply a lotion after you wash. But only to the tops and bottoms of your feet around your heels … not between your toes. Rub the lotion on your feet gently, and keep another towel handy to wipe away any excess lotion.

Tip 4: Keep your nails trimmed

Letting your toenails grow too long can cause problems – both to your toenails and to the toes around them. That’s why keeping them trimmed and tidy is important.
Some trimming tips to bear in mind:
Don’t trim your nails too short. Cutting them too close can cause wounds or lead to ingrown nails when they grow back.
Trim your nails straight across. Curving them in at the corners can also lead to ingrown nails.
Use a nail file or emery board after you trim, to smooth away any sharp edges.
If you have trouble seeing your toes, or if your toenails are yellowed, thick or curve inward, see a foot specialist who can trim them for you.

Tip 5: Always wear shoes and socks

We think that going barefoot in the grass on a summer day can be fun … but it can also be dangerous for your feet. Getting a cut from a sharp object or getting dirt in an existing cut is no fun at all. Even when you’re indoors, wearing socks as well as shoes or slippers is essentially to keeping your feet safe.
Clean, comfortable socks are the best way to start. Remember:
  • White cotton socks are a good choice, since they breathe well.
  • Don’t buy socks that fit too tight – they can make circulation problems worse.
  • Wear a clean pair every day.
  • Make sure your socks are in perfect condition. Rips, tears or holes can lead to foot problems.
  • Wearing shoes without socks is a bad idea, as they can cause blisters.
Comfortable, good-fitting shoes are just as essential. Remember:
  • Choose shoes that are supportive, have low heels (less than 5 cm or 2 inches tall) and don’t rub or pinch.
  • Avoid vinyl of plastic shoes, which don’t expand or breathe well.
  • Shop for your shoes later in the day, when your feet expand. That way you won’t buy a pair that’s too tight.
  • Always check the inside of your shoes before you put them on. Torn linings or small debris can cause foot damage.

Important information

The Pharmacist at Walmart is always ready to help you with foot care advice. Need help putting your best feet forward? Just ask!

Sponsored by

  • footlogix®
  • Helixia®
  • Hemovel&trad;
  • equateTM/MC Diabetic Meal Replacement

This information should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your doctor. There may be variations in treatment that your physician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances. If you have questions about your symptoms, ask the Pharmacist at Walmart for more information, and/or contact your doctor.

The pharmacist at Walmart does not endorse or recommend any sponsor or their products or services.
Any representation, performance claim, warranty or guarantee in any materials herein is the sole responsibility of the sponsor that has prepared such materials and is not independently verified by Walmart.

Footlogix® is a registered trademark of KVG Group Inc.

HELIXIA® is a registered trademark of Pharmascience Inc.
Pendopharm, Division of Pharmascience Inc.

HemovelTM is a trademark of Pharmascience Inc.
Pendopharm, Division of Pharmascience Inc.
This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.



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