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How Podiatrists can support those living with Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects millions of Australians. 

In fact, according to Diabetes Australia, over 1.7 million Australians have diabetes, with 280 Australians developing diabetes every day. Diabetes can lead to a number of health complications, including foot problems. 

One of the most common complications of diabetes is ‘diabetic neuropathy’. This is a type of nerve damage that can affect the feet and lower limbs, causing loss of sensation, pain and tingling. It can also lead to foot ulcers, infections and other complications.

In fact, according to Diabetes Australia, 85% of diabetes-related amputations are preceded by a foot ulcer.

That’s where our podiatrists come in!

Podiatrists are healthcare professionals who specialise in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of conditions that affect the feet and lower limbs. They are an important part of the healthcare team for people living with diabetes.

It’s important for people with diabetes to see a podiatrist regularly. In fact, Diabetes Australia recommends that people with diabetes have a foot assessment at least once a year. This is because early detection and treatment of foot problems can prevent complications and reduce the risk of amputation.

Warning Signs of Diabetic Foot Issues

As a person living with diabetes, it is important to be aware of the warning signs of foot issues and seek help from a podiatrist as soon as possible. Here are some signs to look out for:

  • Numbness or tingling: If you experience numbness or tingling in your feet or toes, it could be a sign of nerve damage (neuropathy). This can make it difficult to feel when your feet are injured, leading to further complications.
  • Changes in skin colour: If your skin changes colour, such as becoming red, blue, or black, it could indicate a lack of blood flow to the area.
  • Dry or cracked skin: High blood sugar levels can cause dry, cracked skin on the feet, making it easier for bacteria to enter and cause infections.
  • Swelling: Swelling in the feet or ankles could indicate poor circulation, and can also be a sign of an infection or injury.
  • Foot ulcers: Foot ulcers are open sores on the feet that can develop when an injury or wound goes unnoticed due to neuropathy. They can become infected and lead to serious complications if not treated promptly.
  • Ingrown toenails: Ingrown toenails occur when the edge of a toenail grows into the skin, causing pain, redness, and swelling. This can be particularly dangerous for people with diabetes, as it can lead to infection.
  • Calluses or corns: Calluses and corns are thickened areas of skin that can develop on the feet due to friction or pressure. If left untreated, they can become painful and lead to further complications.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see seek support quickly.

We are here to support you!

At On The Go Rehabilitation Services, our team of podiatrists are experienced in providing care and support for people with diabetes…and best yet, we come to you!

Our podiatrists can provide a range of services to people with diabetes, including foot assessments, education on foot care and footwear advice. They can also provide treatments such as nail care, callus and corn removal, and wound care.

Contact our friendly team today to book in your consultation with our podiatry team. Click here to find all of our contact details!

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