Skin and Foot Care
In diabetes, care of the skin and the feet assumes paramount importance. Increased chances of contracting an infection, inadequate blood-supply and impaired sensations are the three factors which endanger a diabetic's skin and feet.
Skin-care: A diabetic should always remain alert to prevent an injury to the skin. He should take extra care while scratching his skin or while shaving. He should see that his skin is not abrased against the wall or a rough surface.
In spite of all the precautions, if the skin is injured, the wound should not be allowed to get infected. It should be washed with clean water, disinfected with a cotton-swab soaked in alcohol and lightly bandaged with a cotton cloth. Adhesive tapes should never be used to cover a wound. If a wed is felt, mild antiseptics like mercurochrome, acriflavine or furazolidine can be applied over the wound; but strong medicines like tincture of iodine, carbolic acid, salicylic acid or phenol should be avoided.
Skin Care Tips
If you have any skin problems, talk to your healthcare provider about them right away. Next week, we'll look at some specific skin conditions that affect people with diabetes.
Sometimes we do get injured. Here are some tips to treat your wounds:
Here are signs of infection:
Foot-care: Care for your feet more than your face', so advise the doctors to their diabetic patients, and rightly so.
A diabetic should constantly be on an alert to prevent a foot-injury.
The feet should be washed twice a day with soap and warm water. While washing the feet, the nails, the toes and the skin between the toes should be minutely observed. The feet should then be wiped dry with a soft cloth. In diabetics, the skin between the toes easily gets injured or infected with fungus. So a diabetic, after washing his feet, should apply a cream or an ointment like lanolin between his toes.
A diabetic should never move bare- footed. In his home, he should wear light slippers. While going out he should wear soft (e.g., canvas) shoes. Tight or pointed shoes are not desirable for a diabetic because they obstruct blood-circulation. A diabetic woman should not wear pencil- heel or high-heel shoes or sandals. New shoes should initially be worn only for short periods so that a bite does not develop.
Foot Care DO's and DON'Ts
A diabetic should immediately consult his doctor, if :-
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