Michael Naylor, MD
Summer is here, and while most people enjoy walking barefoot, diabetics should never do this. Many diabetics have neuropathy or decreased sensation in their feet and may be unaware they have had an injury. Diabetes can also reduce blood flow to a person’s feet, which makes it more difficult for a wound to heal. Wearing shoes protects your feet and helps reduce the chances of developing a foot injury.
“People don’t always realize how important it is to take care of your feet, especially if you’re diabetic,” said Michael Naylor, MD, a surgeon with Sumter Surgical. Naylor also provides patient care at the Wound Healing Center, a department of Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital. “Wounds that do not heal can lead to infection and, in worse cases, amputation, so even small wounds should be cared for properly.”
Follow the tips below to help prevent foot injuries:
- Visually inspect feet daily
- Wear socks and supportive shoes that fit well
- Don’t walk with bare feet even when indoors
- Check the inside of your shoes before you put them on for objects
- Keep your blood sugar well controlled
- Wash your feet daily and dry thoroughly
- Moisturize feet but don’t put lotion between your toes
- Seek medical care if you notice any open areas, redness or drainage
- Keep nails clean
- See a podiatrist for nail care
- Protect your feet from hot and cold
If you’d like to know more about how wounds impact diabetics, contact the Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital Wound Healing Center at 803-774-8715 or call your primary care physician.