Diabetes Awareness: Putting Your Best Foot Forward

Diabetes is a serious disease, but more common than you may think. Thousands of people are diagnosed with Diabetes Mellitus every day while many others go undiagnosed.

Diabetes causes your pancreas to malfunction, inhibiting your ability to release insulin to bring carbohydrates from food into your cells, which results in high blood sugar.

There are 2 main types of Diabetes:

Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus, or Insulin Dependent:

  • The exact cause is unknown – researchers say it can be caused by a virus that makes the body’s cells attack the pancreas.
  • Those affected must supplement their bodies with insulin, either by injections or an insulin pump.

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, or Non-Insulin Dependent:

  • With type 2 diabetes, insulin is released but the body’s cells don’t take it in, causing hyperglycemia or high blood sugars.
  • Often caused by unhealthy dietary habits.
  • Most common type of diabetes.
  • Pre-diabetes can progress to Type 2 Diabetes if the patient doesn’t take medications and/or change certain habits.
  • Can usually be controlled with oral medications (antihyperglycemics) and dietary changes.

Why it’s important to see a podiatrist when you have Diabetes

People with diabetes are more prone to foot problems! Diabetes can cause many changes to the feet, including:

  • Diabetic neuropathy, which causes numbness, tingling, burning and itching in the feet. This condition can be debilitating and dangerous.
  • Very dry skin and nail changes due to the autonomic effects of diabetes on the sweat glands.
  • Cramping due to changes to the small muscles and tendons of the foot. This can lead to sores and pressure points.

The podiatric specialists at Advanced Foot & Ankle are knowledgeable about the effects that Diabetes has on your feet. Education and regular foot exams can make a world of difference for a patient with diabetes, as it can prevent, resolve, and manage complications.

If diabetic foot problems go unchecked, the result could be a non-healing diabetic ulcer, or even a partial or total amputation of the lower extremity. For more information on diabetic foot care schedule your appointment today at one of our conveniently located Middle Tennessee locations.