People with diabetes are more susceptible to foot problems due to their high blood sugar levels, which can damage nerves and blood vessels in the feet over time. Some common foot problems for people with diabetes include:
Neuropathy: This is a type of nerve damage that can cause a loss of sensation in the feet. People with neuropathy may not be able to feel pain, heat, or cold, which can make them more susceptible to foot injuries.
- Foot ulcers: These are open sores or wounds on the feet that are slow to heal. People with diabetes are more likely to develop foot ulcers due to poor circulation and nerve damage.
- Fungal infections: High blood sugar levels can create a warm, moist environment in the feet that is ideal for fungal infections such as athlete's foot and toenail fungus.
- Calluses: Calluses are thick, hardened areas of skin that develop on the feet due to pressure or friction. People with diabetes are more likely to develop calluses because they may have altered foot anatomy or gait, which can cause increased pressure on certain areas of the feet.
- Dry skin: High blood sugar levels can cause the skin on the feet to become dry and cracked, which can lead to infection.
- Charcot foot: This is a rare but serious complication of diabetes that can cause the bones in the foot to weaken and fracture, leading to deformity and disability.
- Poor circulation: Diabetes can damage the blood vessels in the feet, leading to poor circulation. This can make it harder for the feet to heal from injuries and infections.
It is important for people with diabetes to take good care of their feet by practicing good foot hygiene, wearing proper shoes, and regularly checking their feet for any signs of injury or infection.