There are of course different types of diabetes, but the effects on the feet are the same regardless of the type. If you are diabetic, or if you know someone who suffers from diabetes, the following page will be of great interest to you.
The care of the feet is vitally important for diabetic sufferers. A fact that cannot be emphasised enough and, therefore, regular maintenance and checks are vital. Why? This is due to the impact diabetes has on the neurological (nerves) and vascular (blood supply) systems.
A diabetic patient is susceptible to loss of sensation in the foot and lower leg as the nerves become starved of nutrients and blood supply. This can present itself as a burning sensation, pins and needles, numbness and loss of sensation and feeling. This condition is called neuropathy and comes in various forms.
The neuropathy, particularly the loss of sensation presents a great risk to a diabetic as injuries and trauma can go unnoticed and take a long time to heal. This greatly increases the risk of infection and serious complications such as neuropathic ulcers which can lead to amputation or worse.
As arteries and small vessels become clogged up, blood supply is reduced to the lower limb, with feet being affected first. This can result in ischemia and restricted blood supply, extremely hazardous to a diabetic patient.
Classic symptoms include cold painful feet and legs which is not relieved by rest or at night and painful calves when walking. This restricted blood supply greatly increases the risk of tissue breakdown, ischemic ulceration and infection which can also lead to amputation or worse. And when coupled with neuropathy the risk is high.
As you can see vascular disease, neuropathy and increased risk of infection presents a real problem to diabetics and put them at high risk. Regular checks and maintenance are vital to prolong the health of the lower limb and early detection of any problem is paramount to ensure the problem is kept under control and speedy referral if necessary.
Natural Balance has a deep understanding and knowledge of diabetes and its effects of the foot and is able to treat and care for sufferers with understanding and sympathy. Regular neurological and vascular assessments for diabetics are mandatory. Natural Balance understand this so at each routine visit these assessments come at no extra cost.
Hand outs and guides are also available at no extra cost. Natural Balance will support you every step of the way and provide a tailor made care and treatment plan, with patient support and education as standard. You are welcome to call at anytime to discuss your needs, for reassurance or to see what Natural Balance can do for you. Or, for a quick guide on how to care for your feet please look at our healthy feet checklist page.
Natural Balance would like you to note that while diabetes greatly increases the risk to the above problems it is not comprehensive, some suffers will not succumb to the difficulties, however, regular checks would still be recommended. If you have any immediate concerns contact your GP.